Soccer team falls short of play-off berth
Though they were far from ready for it, the ’09 season came to an abrupt end for the Tyler Consolidated High School boys soccer team on Oct. 30. Playing for the championship in the Regional final at Brooke High School against the Weir Red Riders, the Silver Knight boys saw their dream of making it to the state tournament dashed by a 3-0 score.
Oddly enough, this game was only the second of the year in which the Knights had been shut-out, the other was in the OVAC finals, on the same field.
“It was sad to end our season on such a down note,” said head coach of the Silver Knights, Scott Wall. “It has been such a great season for us. The boys have played good and they have played hard, I’m so proud of them.”
“We’d have love to have won, but I guess it just wasn’t meant to be. We knew we were going to have to make the most of our opportunities against Weir. They’re a very good team. They have skilled players at every position. We knew that going in, so no excuses here.”
The Knights gave up the first goal to Weir early in the first half, putting the Red and Black on the defensive and scrambling to protect their lead.
Before the half ended, the Riders put another in the net to lead the Regional game 2-0 at the half.
“We hoped that we could hold them to just the two points and make a come back in the second half,” coach Wall said. “Which we did, we just weren’t able to score. We got caught off guard a couple of times, and we just found ourselves in the wrong place at the wrong time.”
The Knight goal keeper, Skylar Kinnard had eight saves in the game. The Knights took eight shots on goal while Weir took nine shots.
The Silver Knights ended the season with a win/loss record of 13-7-1.
The Tyler Consolidated team will lose seven seniors to graduation in the spring: Spencer Kinnard, Dustin Snider, Aaron Estep, Alex Jones, Mack Haught, Curtis Romine and Trent Tuttle.
“Our soccer program has really came a long way since we first started,” the coach said. “This group of seniors have been instrumental in every success we have had this year. In fact, the reason we have been able to play at the level we have is largely due to the hard work and dedication of our seven seniors.”
“They will certainly be missed, there’s no doubt about that, but they’re leaving us with some younger players who have been able to learn under these guys, and we’re going to be all the better because of them.”
“The group we have coming back is a solid group of good players. They know that expectations are high for them, so we’re looking to make even greater strides next year.”
The goalie, Kinnard, is credited with 110 saves on the year and six shut-outs.
Spencer Kinnard scored 25 goals throughout the year and had 10 assists; Justin Cooper scored 22 goals and had two assists; Dustin Snider scored eight with six assists.
The Silver Knight soccer program played their first game in 2003 and have continued to improve every year since, with this year marking one of the most successful to date. The ’09 season saw the team collect the most wins in a season at the school, with 13; gained more shut- outs than in any year past, with seven; members of the team scored more goals this year (68) than any previous years teams; scored more goals in a single game than they have before, 11; and achieved their 50th win as a program.
For the first time the soccer team finished the year ranked in the top 10 of class AA high schools in the state, and at one time, climbed all the way to second.
The ’09 Knight soccer team ends the season as OVAC regular season champions, Sectional champions, and runners-up to the Regional champs, just a game away from the WV State Soccer Tournament. Postions they never dreamed they would find themselves in.
“All in all, it’s been great,” Wall said. “We had a very good year, beyond any of our expectations. I could not ask for anything better and I could not possibly be more proud of my guys.”