Farmington boys soccer team a top contender again

For the Farmington program, any season where it fails to contend for a league and class title is considered a disappointment. Fortunately for this year’s squad, that outcome seems unlikely. The Indians are expected to again be a top contender for both titles this season after capturing the 2012 Class L title, the program’s third in five seasons.

The Indans (2-0) return the majority of its starting offense and should have a potent attack. It will be deep at the forward position with the senior trio of Colin Cheesman, Guido Schutz and Sabri Akter. Overall, this season’s roster scored more than half of the team’s goals in 2012.

The question marks for the Indians nearly all come on defense, where they will have to replace a senior class that anchored last season’s title run. If Farmington plays up to its talent level, 2013 could be another banner season for the program.

“Our guys definitely have the talent to win a state title,” head coach Steve Waters said. “We’d need to win it for this to be a successful season. That’s what we measure success by in Farmington.”

Avon

The Falcons are highly determined to win the Class L title this season after falling to rival Farmington in last season’s title match. To do so, they must overcome the loss of seven starters to graduation.

Avon (1-0) returns a talented collection of defenders, led by seniors Jared Rosenblatt and Stephen Dorney.

The Falcons offense could be strong, but it is also somewhat inexperienced. Head coach Dave Zlatin believes that his young offensive players grasp how important hard work is to being successful.

“Our young guys understand what it means to step up and give total effort in crucial moments from watching last season’s offense,” he said. “I’m confident that they will display excellent effort and leadership.”

Zlatin feels that Avon possesses the talent and motivation to be a championship team.

“I expect us to be a strong competitor for the league and class titles,” he stated. “We are very motivated to improve on last year’s success. The biggest key to doing so will be staying healthy.”

Simsbury

The Trojans should be strong contenders in the CCC West after returning seven starters from a squad that finished 12-5-1 and advanced to the second round of the Class LL tournament.

Head coach Ed Lynch believes that the team’s biggest strength is the balance of its roster.

“We will have a great blend of skilled and mature players,” he said. “A lot of guys possess the ability to have big seasons.”

Lynch expects Simsbury (2-0) to have a potent offense that will be anchored by the senior trio of forward Keegan Rice, midfielder/forward Mason Burr and midfielder John Flynn. Rice was the team’s second leading scorer last season and is entering his third season as a starter.

The Warriors must establish five starters on defense, and are hopeful that this group will gel and develop chemistry quickly. Senior midfielders/defenders John Sullivan and Kyle Robbins could be key contributors on the revamped defense.

Canton

Last season, the Warriors overcame the loss of seven starters to go 11-8 and advance to the Class S quarterfinals. They will attempt to have a similar campaign in 2013 after graduating 12 players.

Head coach Bill Phelps believes that Canton’s young talent will allow it to be successful in the NCCC. He stated that this belief has only grown stronger after witnessing excellent play from a number of Warriors during the preseason.

A skilled group of young strikers should give Canton (1-1) a top notch offense that is athletic and versatile. Junior Nate Hanson and sophomore Rieley Hoffman will anchor the offense.

The biggest question mark the Warriors face entering the season is how well its defense will develop. Canton graduated its entire starting lineup on that end. Phelps is pleased with what he’s seen from the defense so far, but admitted that it will take time for it to develop chemistry. The Warriors are depending on senior Alex Daley and sophomore goalie Josh Frigo to provide consistency and leadership.

Canton is confident that as the season progresses, it will become capable of matching and possibly exceeding last season’s success.

“I have higher expectations coming into the season than I did last year,” Phelps stated. “The depth and skill is already there to finish over .500 and make a run in the state tournament. We just need to learn how to compete consistently.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *