|Written by Brian Bergner|
|Wednesday, 08 September 2010 00:00|
With the 2010 season opener just around the corner for the Camp Verde High School boys soccer team, Head Coach Dave Miller believes his boys are going to be quite good this fall.
“I think we’ve got a good group of kids and should be solid this season,” Miller said at practice last week.
When asked what he thought his chances were for a final four appearance, and perhaps even a state championship, Miller balked at the question immediately and smiled.
“I’ve had the talent before to make it that far, and we lost first round, and I’ve had a team I thought wasn’t as talented and we made it. Really, it all boils down to luck. I’d rather be lucky than good if you ask me,” Miller said in his stern approach that has earned the respect of his players for years now.
The biggest question surrounding the Cowboys this season is who will replace All-State goalkeeper Taylor Matthews between the posts in 2010.
Matthews graduated after a stellar 2009 season and will be difficult for Miller to replace.
According to the longtime head coach, however, there are a few options he thinks will work out just fine.
Top returners this season for the Cowboys include senior twin brothers Casey and Cody Gray, who should lead the offensive attack this season, while senior Jake McIlvoy could be one of the top scorers in the state when it’s all said and done.
Seniors Carlos Zavalza and Rodrigo Hernandez return this fall, while juniors Andres Orellana and Zeke O’Callaghan return as well.
Top newcomers this season include senior Roman Bux who joined the team this August looking to try a new sport, and help himself get ready for wrestling in the winter.
Along with Bux, sophomores Justin Ray, Oscar Lopez and L.J. Teague have made the varsity squad. Ray is a defender while Teague looks to play midfield somewhere for the Cowboys this season.
Another freshman besides Homea making the cut was Edgar Aguayo who should play midfield for Miller, but it is unclear whether the young star will be in more of a backup role this fall.
In 2009, Camp Verde went 15-6-2 overall and qualified for the 1A-3A conference state playoffs, defeating Holbrook High School in the first round, 2-0. In round two, Camp Verde fell to Desert Christian Academy in a thriller, 1-0.
The 2010 state championship is likely to go through Blue Ridge High School again which scored 17 goals and went 4-0 in 2009 to claim the title.
Camp Verde opens the regular season at home Thursday, Sept. 9, when they play host to Northland Preparatory Academy at 6 p.m.
The Cowboys hit the road after that but return to Camp Verde to host bitter rival Chino Valley High School on Tuesday, Sept. 21, at 6 p.m.
Camp Verde will end the season at home facing Phoenix Country Day School and Grand Canyon High School in preparation for the state tournament which is scheduled to begin Friday, Oct. 29, at Red Mountain Park in Mesa.
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