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Rebuilding Varsity Soccer: One goal at a time

Cris+Vargas+%2812%29+dribbles+around+a+defender+during+the+Sept.+19+home+game+against+Maine+West.
Cris Vargas (12) dribbles around a defender during the Sept. 19 home game against Maine West.

Cris Vargas (12) dribbles around a defender during the Sept. 19 home game against Maine West.

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Cris Vargas (12) dribbles around a defender during the Sept. 19 home game against Maine West.

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The Vernon Hills High School Boys’ Varsity Soccer team is coming back more vigorously than last year. After losing in the semi-finals against Chicago Latin in double overtime, and nearly grasping a spot in the state game last year, the team is fighting even harder to gain their spot back in the playoffs.

This has proven to be a difficult task. After graduating many of last years’ key players, the Boys’ Varsity Soccer Team had an extravagantly large gap to fill. The younger players have stepped up to fill the void, but so far, the team has a losing record.

“We had a rough start, which was kind of expected… we knew we would have challenges since last year we graduated a lot of seniors,” Michael Harty (12) said. “We’ve definitely seen a lot of improvement.”

There are only five seniors on the varsity team, and only seven total returning varsity players. This year has consisted of struggles, but the boys are ready to rebuild and become a stronger team than before.

Sean Collins (11) said, “This year we have a very young team, but next year our team will be majority juniors and seniors. As a junior on the team, I am ready to lead the team next year to a greater season”.

Collins draws from Coach McCaulou for inspiration. One of his go-to phrases is “sweat the details,” Collins said, which means “always put in that last bit of effort, no matter how tired you are.”
The team still has several games before the playoffs start, so they’re ready to prove their record wrong and start making improvements.

“We have improved a lot from the beginning of the season to now,” Ryan Kim (12) said. “Every day we continue to progress forward.”

Kim expressed that he is proud of how far the team has come, and expects the team to be even stronger in the future.

“We definitely have a strong team; a lot of us play club outside of the regular season, so I can definitely see next year being stronger, since they’re all playing together as a team this year,” Kim said.

He added, “A lot of the juniors and underclassmen want to play in college, and I do so myself… I think that drive to want to play will make the team stronger in the end”.

An average practice for the Boys’ Soccer team consists of a lot of conditioning, skill work, and drills. The team always ends practice with a scrimmage to get the game-like feel.
The scrimmage at the end brings out our drive to play and our competitiveness,” Kim said. “I think that we all enjoy this part of practice the most and it is the most game like situation.”
Since a majority of the team is underclassmen, Harty said he wants to impart a message upon the young members of the team who next year will build on the efforts from this season.
“You’re a team; when a couple people fall, you can either let them drag you all down with them, or help them back up,” Harty said. “What you choose will decide the fate of your season.”

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The student newspaper of Vernon Hills High School
Rebuilding Varsity Soccer: One goal at a time