The Greenon Knight’s boys soccer team is gearing up for an exciting fall season as they finished their week of conditioning.
Last year, the boys finished 2nd in the Central Buckeye Conference and Coach Jeff Nickles hopes for a better outcome this season. “Second place is always tough to swallow,” Nickles said, “I believe we are always in the hunt for the league title, and this year should be no different.”
The team has been holding open fields twice a week during the summer to get in shape for the upcoming season. They also played in the Valerie Cute soccer tournament held annually at Wright State University. They compete in this tournament every year to get a good look at the new players coming in and what the team will look like for the upcoming season. This year the boys won three games and tied one.
Last week was the teams’ first week of conditioning. This is to give the boys a hard work-out before mandatory practices begin. During this week of conditioning, the team spent three days at Greeenon doing fitness training and on the final day, they took a 16 mile bike ride from Yellow Springs to Xenia and then back. Official practices began on Monday, August 3rd.
This year there are only 25 boys who have been out to open fields and conditioning. A few more may show up for the beginning of mandatory, but this means it will be hard to manage a junior varsity team. Nickles knows that it will take some managing, but believe the boys can handle the lack of numbers. There is also a new JV coach this year. Greenon alumni, Caleb Wilson, is going to be helping the Knights with their season.
The team is strong on defense and has a core center, but has lost a key goal scorer and other strong players. Nickles believes that the boys can step up and fill those spots and that some may even have a breakthrough season.
Captains this year are seniors Jordan Bardnell, Ben Deckard, and Colton Smith. The Assistant Captains are juniors Blaine Butterworth and Chris Baird.
“I think this season is going to be a battle,” Deckard said, “but I think we’re ready to fight. As long as we keep pushing through and keep working hard, I think we’ll bring the CBC title back to Greenon.”
“There are two, main long term goals for us this year. One being to bring the title back home, and the second is to win enough games to give Nickles his 100th win as coach of Greenon’s high school team. As long as we take the season one game at a time, I am sure we will bring back the title and bring our coach to his 100th win!” Bardnell said.
The Knights have four scrimmages scheduled before the season starts. They will play at Dayton Christian on August 6th and Middletown Madison on the 10th. The team will be at Southeastern on August 13th and will host a match at Greenon against Northeastern on the 18th.
The boys play their first game against Tri-County North on August 22nd. The season looks promising and fans should be excited to see what the boys have in store for the year.