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Area soccer teams set to kick off seasons

T-L Photo/KIM NORTH ST. CLAIRSVILLE senior Karl Kain dribbles the ball past a Shenandoah defender during “Friday Night Futbol” inside Red Devil Stadium. Kain is one of the key returnees for the Red Devils this season.

The 2021 high school soccer season was one for the ages as several teams from The Times Leader coverage area had banner seasons.

No team — boys nor girls — has ever advanced to the state tournament. The St. Clairsville boys came within two victories of doing so last season before falling to Chillicothe Unioto in the Division II, Region 7 semifinal, 3-2, on a chilly November night in Cambridge.

The Red Devils also played in the OVAC Class 4A title tilt for the third consecutive season, however, unlike the 2020 and 2019 squads, they came up short in a three-peat bid, losing to Weir.

Harrison Central and St. Clairsville also put together fine seasons of their own on the girls’ side.

So much for looking in the past, the prep season got underway when St. Clairsville hosted Shenandoah in ‘Friday Night Futbol.’

Also fielding teams this year and playing under the boys designation are co-ed teams from Monroe Central and Union Local.

A capsule look at each team follows:

BOYS

St. Clairsville

The Red Devils will have to replace a huge and productive senior class from last year’s 17-4 team, but

Returnees are seniors Sean O’Grady (D/MF), Luke Miller (MF), Jayson Clark (MF/F), Karl Kain (D/MF) and Maddox Tennar (MF).

“We are a young team after graduating eight starting seniors, head coach Jeff Roberts said. “We are led by some strong seniors with a lot of experience and have a great up-and-coming freshman class.

“We have our sights set on becoming OVAC champions again.”

O’Grady and Clark are three-year vets, while Miller, Kain and Tennar have earned two letters each thus far. O’Grady and Kain were honorable mention all-Eastern District selections a season ago.

Juniors include Chris Schmidt (MF), Marius Trouten (D), Aaron Ni (D/MF), Dereque Johnson (D/MF), Jack Koontz (MF) and Alex Brocklehurst (D). Schmidt is a two-year letterwinner.

Sophomores are Carson Hendershot (MF/D), Brady Blacker (D/MF), Kole Facello (MF/F), Hunter Harr (D/MF), Brayden Kralovic (GK), Luke Swan (D/MF) and Jackson Dutton (D/MF). Hendershot lettered last fall.

Freshmen include Parker Galloway (F/MF), Brennan Rice (F/MF), Talen Rice (GK), Ridge Reven (D), Giovanni Hoehler (D), Tyler Harris (D/MF), Adam Palmer (MF), Jonathan Verardi (MF/F) and Jakob Parr (MF/D).

Assistant coaches are Nate Verardi and Kevin O’Grady. Tommy Brannan is the team statistician.

In addition to all-stater Caden Stout and high-scoring Andy Thornburg, also lost to graduation were Andy Schmidt, Lucas Otto, Shane Jackson, Jesse Brannan, Jack Gasber and Brandon Kralovic.

Harrison Central

Senior Huskies are Taylor Cope, Cameron Dulkoski, Kaden Jurosko and Jace Madzia.

Juniors include Dean Forrester and Jaydis Yoho.

Sophomores are Kayden Dunkle, Brady Elliott, Austin Fulton, Caleb Miller, Cole Saiter and Brice Tanner.

Freshmen include Zane Carson, Ben Giffin, Julian Moore, Julian Reese, Frankie Shaulis, Samuel Siragusano and Cooper Thompson

Lost to graduation were Clayton Everhart, Mack Marshall, Jacob Mattern, Benjamin Puskarich and Zane VanCamp

No further information was provided by the coaching staff.

Monroe Central

Seniors are Connell McBurney, Kadelan Griffith, Jaycie Hoff and Remington Weckbacher. McBurney is the defensive captain.

Braden Wilson is the team’s lone Junior and will serve as the offensive captain.

The only sophomore on the roster is Mylee McCammon.

Freshmen include Ariel Isaacs, Zachary Babcock, Wyatt Cohen, Mayzie Emery, Bayleigh Burdette and Avery Fortin.

No further information was provided by the coaching staff.

Union Local

Senior Jets are Hailey Romshak, Landon Crum, Ahnalyn Davis and Lee Adkins.

Juniors include Cameron Russell, Kennedy Madrzykowski, Rileyjoe Wilson and Logan Parker.

Sophomores are Aunica Weaver and Brooke Kreider.

Freshmen include Gage Davis, Jadyn Williams, Bobby Boone, Johnathan Schmitt, Brady Roe and Landon Heisler.

The head coach is Derek Ackley.

No further information was provided by the coaching staff.

GIRLS

St. Clairsville

The Red Devils (14-3-3) advanced to the district semifinals last season after qualifying for the Division II regionals for the first time in 2019.

“It should be another great year. We lost a lot of talent and goal scoring to graduation, and a couple of talented girls moved out of the area, but we’ve got a lot of talent left and some are coming up in the freshman class that can help us,” head coach Wes Stoner said. “Some girls are going to have to step up and fill in those roles that were vacated, but we have enough skilled players to do that.”

Seniors are Zoey Russell, Megan Malin, Jocelyhnn Zucco, Hayleigh Harr, GK Rileigh Wood, Grace May and Lacy Tuttle. Russell, Malin and Zucco are three-year letterwinners. Harr, Wood, May and Tuttle are two-year vets.

Juniors include Delaney Florence, Grace Dutton, Gracie Gardner, Lanie Gardner, MaKenna Booth, Savannah Grim and Emaly Elerick. Florence, Booth and Lanie Gardner have also earned two letters, with Dutton, Gracie Gardner and Elerick having one each.

The lone sophomore is Isabella Yeager, who lettered last fall.

Freshmen are Elizabeth Viczian, Ava Borkoski, Olivia McKeever, Katie Brocklehurst, GK Kailin Hughes and Samantha Jarrett

Co-captains are Malin and Booth.

Brock Ferrell serves as the assistant coach and Merrick Malin is the team manager.

Lost to graduation were four-year letterwinners in Sierra Musser, Alyssa Bodkin, Jaylyn Gray, Emily Thompson, Emily Mozena and Haven Brak. That group combined for a program-record 48 career victories, one more than the group before them.

Harrison Central

There’s a lot of excitement over the Huskies as they return 15 players from a 7-9-1 squad which qualified for the OVAC Tournament last fall.

Head coach Mindy Madzia enters her fifth season. Meghan Scott is her new assistant.

“I am looking forward to this upcoming season with the core group of girls we have returning and putting in the work for their positions on the field,” Madzia said. “We continue to improve our presence on the field and hope to return to the OVAC Tournament again this year.

“We tripled our goals from the past and hope to continue with even stronger outcomes this year,” Madzia added. “I have a new assistant coach and she has helped greatly with preparing for this year’s season.”

Returning letterwinners are seniors Lexi Smith (Fwd), Collette Downs (Mid), Gracie Rogers (D/Mid), Maddy Bender (Mid), Alina Williams (D/Mid) and Hayden Elliott (Mid); juniors Angi Ferri (Fwd), Isabel Yeager (D), Kat Carman (Mid). Katherine Shearer (D/Goalie) and Carys Haney (D); and sophomores Lily Gibbons (Fwd), Vanessa Dowdle (GK), Carleigh Burgess (D) and Avri Puskarich (Mid).

Smith and Downs are the co-captains.

The Harrison Central roster is completed by junior Gretchin Dulkoski (Mid); sophomores Zoe Williamson (Mid/D) and Gabby Stull (Mid); and freshmen Emma Patterson (Mid/F) and Grace Miller (Mid).

“Emma Patterson is an incoming freshman that has played for many years in the youth program and shows her presence on the field already during open field sessions,” Madzia noted. “She will be a good asset to the team.”

Lost to graduation were Rebecca Downs, Maggie Goudy and Kadence Tanner.

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