After placing second to Loyola High School in Mission League and losing to Hueneme High School in the first round of CIF Playoffs last season, the boys’ soccer team is focused on winning a Mission League Championship this year.
“We have a really good group of core players, and I’m really hoping that we can win our first Mission League in 27 years,” midfielder Connor Colao ’21 said. “Last season, I thought that we had a really strong group of players, but due to injuries, we weren’t able to win the games that mattered the most. Not being able to win last season was a very disappointing result.”
Last season’s results
Last year, after beginning with a 5-0-1 league record, the team lost many key players including captain Alec Katz ’19 and midfielder Pablo Greenlee ’20 to season-ending injuries.
Greenlee said that, after missing a large portion of his junior season, he aims to leave a lasting impact on the squad this year.
“I’m hoping to stay healthy all year to help my team,” Greenlee said. “I want to lead my team by trying to set an example for what it means to be part of the boy’s soccer team at [the school]. Since [program head and head coach Kristopher Ward] started the new program my freshman year, the standard has gotten higher and higher. The younger kids are looking for that standard, and hopefully I can provide it. I have high hopes for the team’s success.”
Practice, preparation, expectation
In preparation for the upcoming season, the team is practicing five days a week in addition to lifting, prior to practice.
“I would say that although practice can be tough, it has really helped the team to prepare for the games,” Colao said. “In order to accomplish what we want, we need to practice.”
Ward said that he is excited for how the season will play out. With new additions to the team, he believes that the players will be able to accomplish their goals.
“The team is looking very strong,” Ward said. “Everyone is coming from a successful club season, so we are in a really good place. I think that we have more weapons that we have ever had before. We have more players who can score goals and I am really excited to watch them put their skills to use.”
Results of current season
The team’s first game was Dec. 4, when they defeated Palisades Charter High School by a score of 3-1. This was the first time that the Wolverines have played against the Dolphins. Right defender Jack North ’21 said that this match made the whole team feel good about themselves.
“We played really well and it was a great start to the season.” North said. “I think we have a lot of potential to do really well this year.”
In the team’s most recent game, the boys defeated Windward High School 4-0 Dec. 6.
Forward Langston Holly ’20, midfielder Henry Sanderson ’20, defender Liam Weetman ’21 and Greenlee all scored for the Wolverines.
The team will play its first league game Friday against Crespi Carmelite High School.
Last season, the boys finished 2-0 against the Celts, winning 2-0 in the first league matchup and 1-0 Jan. 23.