Knights finish season 11-6
The last regular season soccer game of 2010 pitted the Silver Knights of Tyler Consolidated against the Red Devils of Ravenswood on Saturday in Middlebourne. Having never defeated a team from Ravenswood, the Knights were prepared to leave all they had on the field before proceeding to post-season play. Though they did just that, the Silver met defeat, yet again, at the hands of the Devils, 3-0.
“They’re a good team,” said Knight head coach Scott Wall. “That’s all there is to it. We played well, really didn’t make any huge mistakes, but just were not able to score.”
The Knights took five shots on goal to the Devils seven.
“Jared Lantz did a good job for us in goal,” the coach said. “We just couldn’t score.”
“In all honesty though, it’s good for us to play a team the caliber of Ravenswood right before we go into playoffs,” he said. “It forces us to play up and be ready for anything.”
The Silver Knights recognized the four senior members of their team immediately before the game: Justin Cooper, Jared Lantz, Waylon Rosenlieb, and Einar Mellem.
Cooper, a four year letterman for the team was one of the top scorers for the team last year, and this year, due to playing a different position, leads the team in assists, setting a new record with 11. “Justin is our old timer,” Wall said. “He’s been here from day one and is an excellent soccer player. I won’t be surprised at all to see him further his soccer career at college. I am both pleased with him and for him. He’ll do good things.”
Lantz has three years under his belt as a Knight varsity soccer player and though he has held down the goalie position for most of this season, is counted on as a utility player for the team. “Jared will do anything we ask of him,” the coach said. “He’s a total team player and will play any position and do anything for the good of the team. He’s the most selfless player we have, and we’ve been fortunate to have him on the team.”
Rosenlieb also returned for his third season on the soccer field for the Knights, generally in a defense, mid-field position. “I have to say that of all of our players, Waylon has improved the most by leaps and bounds since he first joined the team. He’s turned into a better soccer player than even he realizes, I think. He’s become the kind of player you can rely on, and is the guy you want in the field when the pressure is on.”
Foreign exchange student from Norway, Mellem brought a higher level of soccer to the team, scoring 19 goals and credited with nine assists on the year. “Einar has been a blessing,” Wall said. “Trained as a goalie, he never changed words when we asked him to play in the field. And he excelled there. Again, we were so fortunate to have him.”
“This is a great group of seniors, and they’re good kids to boot. I’m so pleased the season has turned out so well for them. I think people were a little concerned at the beginning of the season, with our loss of so many seniors from last year. But these guys stepped up and made this their team early on. We wouldn’t have 11 wins without them, and it’s been a pleasure to coach them.”
These four seniors and the rest of the their team will begin Sectional play on Wednesday or Thursday in New Martinsville. The date and opponent will depend on the winner of the Magnolia – Trinity game on Tuesday. Should the Silver repeat as Sectional champions this year, they earn the right to play for the Regional title on Oct. 28 at Wheeling Island Stadium.