Both the North Adams boys and girls junior high soccer teams will be competing this weekend in the Ohio SAY State Tournament in Hamilton.
For the boys, this will be their second-consecutive trip to the state competition while the girls rebounded from last year’s win less season to a 6-3-1 campaign this year and beat Hillsboro to punch their ticket to Hamilton.
The boys team tied this year with Peebles and finished their regular season unbeaten at 6-0-4 and Head Coach Bill Hesler said his team is growing together at the right time.
“The team has started to gel,” Hesler said. “We’re very solid all the way around. Our strength is the boys understand the most important position is whatever position they’re playing. There’s no thoughts of ‘I’m just playing defense and not striking so I’m not important.’”
On the girl’s side, Head Coach Nancy Horvarth said her team has players who can attack from either side of the field with speed.
“We have a couple of girls with speed who can get past defenses physically and we’ve been blessed with left-footed players and right-footed players with some strength,” Horvarth said. “It helps because we can feed the ball left or right and stay strong either way. The girls pass well and we’ve got several people who want to score and have a great desire to score. We also have a nice defense most of the time that plays strong.”
With the positive results both junior teams made this season coupled with both varsity teams winning sectional championships this fall, Hesler said he believes soccer in Adams County is really on the rise.
“Adams County soccer is really going to make a mark on this league in the high-school level in the next couple of years,” Hesler said. “West Union is getting very good as well as Peebles in the past couple of years. We want to be the Clinton-Massie of the soccer world. We do not want to rebuild, we want to reload. I would love to see that for any Adams County soccer program.”
Both teams celebrated their qualification to the state tournament with a parade through Seaman last week with emergency service vehicles escorting the teams through the town.
“We had a big pep rally bonfire [on Tuesday],” Horvarth said. “We had four fire trucks that escorted us through town and each team rode in the back of trucks. We had a good time.”
Reach Charles Grove at 937-544-2391 or firstname.lastname@example.org.