Liberty Boys’ soccer

The Live Wire discusses the boy’s start to the 2021 soccer season.

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This 2021 boys’ soccer team has high hopes for this season, after finishing their 2018-19 season 7-11. The Bolts are eager to get back on the pitch after having their 2020 season canceled due to COVID.  

“I was disappointed to hear the soccer season was canceled,  but I think it was the right decision,” said Josh Fowler, junior. “A lot was still unknown about the virus, and I couldn’t see the season being played out at that time.”

After the first couple of practices, the boys got back into the swing of things.

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We’ve only had a couple of scrimmages so far, but they have been lots of fun. Winning our first scrimmage against CCA definitely got me excited for the games to come and made me more confident in our team.”

— Hayden Thompson

“There wasn’t a lot of nerves or pressure,” said Chris Nair, senior. “It was just a lot of fun to be playing again.”

The boys have already had multiple practices and scrimmages this season. This has led to many players feeling excited and ready to play.

“We’ve only had a couple of scrimmages so far, but they have been lots of fun. Winning our first scrimmage against CCA definitely got me excited for the games to come and made me more confident in our team,” said Hayden Thompson, senior.

This season the Bolts started them off right, beating the CCA Clippers in a scrimmage 4-2 and Marion in a Jamboree 1-0, but falling to City, 3-1. In their most recent match, they destroyed Waterloo East 9-0 according to Varsity Bound. They will play 18 games throughout the regular season.

“We are most excited about playing West and City. Since they are our neighbors and rivals,” said Nair.

During practices, the boys’ team is making sure to follow all safety precautions to try and keep themselves and their team safe.

“To prevent Covid during the season, we wear our masks during practices and lifts. We also try to split into smaller groups during practice and be socially distanced as much as possible,” said Fowler.

“If someone on our team tests positive everyone who was exposed to them will have to be quarantined, I’m not sure what the protocol is for another team testing positive,” said Thompson.

Throughout the practices and the beginning of the season, a few players have stepped ahead of the pack.

“One of the leaders this year is Amah Ajavon,” said Nair. “He always has a good attitude and never complains. He always seems to put the team first.”

After the good start to begin the season, the boys have had a good jumpstart towards their team goals.

“The main goal of the team this season is to establish a culture and create a successful soccer program for the school,” explained Fowler. “We are going to work hard and push each other every day to become better [to achieve our goals]; as teammates and as players.”

With this being only the third year of Liberty soccer, the boys’ have a unique opportunity to create a culture.

“I plan to start a culture on our team that is positive and competitive,” said Thompson. “Players will be able to learn from their upperclassmen teammates and be built up as players so that they can be the leaders when they are upperclassmen.”

“We are trying to be more positive on the field and during practice. Giving each other constructive criticism and tips instead of being destructive,” said Thompson.

The boys’ next game is on April 9th. They will play Central DeWitt at Dewitt, and it starts at 6:30. The boys are hoping that as many fans as possible will attend the game to show their support and help them beat the Sabers.

“I know for our first home scrimmage each JV and Varsity player got 3 tickets. But for games outside the district, I’m pretty sure the fan restriction has been lifted,” said Thompson.

With a good start to the season, the boys have to continue to grind to achieve their goals for the season.

“Goals are a lot more exciting when you have a student section to celebrate them with,” said Thompson.