Silver Knight soccer team returns nine
The 2009 soccer season was a dream season for the boys soccer team at Tyler Consolidated High School. Not only did the team set record after record for the program at the school, but they won their Sectional and played in the Regional final. Several players were honored with many post-season accolades and the program was the most successful men’s team at the school and in soccer history at Consolidated.
While these facts may seem overwhelming to overcome, the 2010 team may just have the right stuff to do it.
“As soon as these guys realize that they can do it, I’m hoping that they will do it,” said head coach of the Silver Knights, Scott Wall. “We have some excellent players back who handle the ball extremely well and have only got better since last season.”
The team lost seven outstanding seniors to graduation in June including: Spencer Kinnard, Dustin Snider, Alex Jones, Curtis Romine, Aaron Estep, Mack Haught, and Trent Tuttle.
“Those guys molded this team, and made it their own, the kids this year have to do the same,” Wall said. “They’re good enough to be successful, they just have to make it happen.”
Returning to lead the Knights on the soccer field this season are seniors: Jared Lantz (co- captain), Justin Cooper, and Waylon Rosenlieb; juniors: Skylar Kinnard (co-captain), Jeremy Smith, and Chris Postlewait; and sophomores: Brandon Frey, and Dustin Tawney.
“These are good kids and hard, hard workers,” Wall said. “I’m very pleased to have these guys back on the field again. They know the program, they got to be part of the success of last year, so they know what it’s going to take to get there again.”
“I know they can do it, they just have to know it too. As soon as they get some confidence I think we’ll surprise some people.”
New to the team this season are junior Einar Mellen; sophomore, Scott Sole; and freshmen: Dylan Reynolds, Matt Goudy, Dylan Romine, Austin Souders, and Chase Cornell.
“I’m also very pleased that the new guys have fit right in with our returning players,” the coach said. “The returning players have been very helpful and patient with the new guys and you can already see a team forming. That’s what we’re looking for.”
Wall praises youth soccer programs in the area for turning out kids that already know the game, understand the rules and are used to being coached for the skills that the younger players on the team join with. “Feeder programs are our lifeblood,” he said. “Without them we’d be at square one every single year, teaching more than coaching. We appreciate those youth programs and hope they continue to send us the caliber of players we’ve been getting for the past couple of years.”
The main strengths of the Silver Knight team this year seems to be the adaptability of several players to play many different positions on the field, as well as their ball handling and passing skills. “We’re going to be flexible,” the coach said. “We’re going to change things up from game to game to see which scenario’s work the best for us, which ones we’re more comfortable with.””These are hard working kids and they’ve done everything coach Matt Kinnard and I have asked of them. They’ve proven to be very adaptable and willing to try new things.”
“Our obvious weakness is the overall height of the team in general. Last year we were pretty tall, this year, not so much. But we’re going to find ways to make that work for us as well. Also, we’re in need of some confidence. But I think once we get some games under our belts, maybe a few wins, that will come.”
“All in all, this team is comparable to any other on our schedule. We can win, we just have to know that we can win.”
The Silver Knights will begin their season on Thursday when they travel to Magnolia to take on the Blue Eagles. The first home game for the team will be on Saturday at Brubacher Field vs. Trinity Christian at 1 p.m.