Hellgate Knights Boys Soccer Look for Another Title
After being state champs in 2011, the Hellgate Knights were tied for the best record in the West heading into last years state tournament…where they lost in the first game to three seed CMR.
"I don't really know how to explain it, but it didn't go the way we wanted it to," says junior defender Jonathan Taylor.
"We had a really good regular season, and came into state a little too confident, and didn't work as hard as we should have," says senior forward Kyle Higgins.
"I think we got a little ahead of ourselves, and this year we're not doing that, this year we're looking no further than our first game, and we'll go from there," says senior midfielder Garrett Leach.
While the Knights lose several key players, including leading goal scorer Reid Birgenheir, head coach Jay Anderson expects several players will have a break-through season with more playing time.
"I think there's lots of guys that could. I'm pretty senior heavy this year, so even though we lost a lot of good players, some all-staters, I think a lot of these guys are ready to step up in those positions," says Anderson.
Senior heavy the team may be, but just how many does that include?
"I think we have 15 seniors this year, we're going to start most of them, so size and strength will definitely help us out," says Higgins.
"Not only does the size help us, but the experience is there too, and that's a key factor playing good opponents, you need that experience and we're lucky to have it," says Leach.
"it's incredible, these older guys are leaders for the younger kids, and they teach them, so the classes from then on keep passing them down, and it's really important to have that leadership on the team, and this year I think we have more leadership than usual," says Anderson.