Bouncing back: Hard-working Bull Dogs hope to bounce back with huge season

After eight consecutive sectional championships, the Columbus North boys soccer team saw its 2015 season end with a sectional loss to Columbus East.

The Bull Dogs are hungry to atone for their early exit. Several key players return from that team that finished 7-7-3.

“We had a good summer of preparation leading into the season,” North coach Andy Glover said. “They have a tremendous amount of work ethic and determination and grit, but it’s so early it’s difficult to know how we’ll size up.”

The Bull Dogs return six players who started at times last season. Sophomore forward Alex McGill, who netted seven goals last season, was the only North player with more than two goals.

Seniors Cam Phillips and Nick Beales can play forward or on defense, junior Rico Hollenkamp is back in the midfield and junior Jannis Anderson returns in the back. Senior Kaemon Jiles, a part-time starter last season, can play forward or back.

Junior Axel Arroyo and sophomore Zack Friend saw plenty of action last season. Also battling for field spots this year are senior Sam LaVelle, juniors Jack Robertson and Andrew Potter and freshmen Graham Keele and Andrew Goble.

Seniors Mark Salle-Tabor and Zach Green and sophomore Drew Cvelbar are battling for the goalkeeper job.

“We have a reasonable talent level, and I think we’ll have a competitive season,” Glover said. “I’m very pleased with some players that we knew were developing and also some players that we knew had some skill. Every team is a little bit different, but I like what this team is showing so far.”

Columbus East

The Olympians broke a long drought last season by winning their first sectional title since 2005.

East lost eight seniors from that 13-5 team, including six starters, but return five starters from the Hoosier Hills Conference and sectional champions.

“I think anytime we have the success that we had last year, the boys are extra motivated going into the offseason,” East coach Brad Barber said. “We saw that with our turnouts and the drive and passion throughout the training during the offseason. It’s been a good start to the year.”

Junior Scott Hammond at center back and senior Landon Miles at outside back return on defense. Junior Eli Newell is back in the in center midfield, and junior Dustin Rodgers moves from outside back to forward. Junior Andy Davidson started the second half of the season in goal.

Seniors Simon Tunny and Graden Chisholm will move into spots on defense.

“I think our defense will be a strength for us this year,” Barber said. “We may not have one player who is carrying the boatload of our goals, but we’re going to have a lot of players that are getting on the scoreline.”

Junior Justin Copas, sophomore Ricky Sanchez and freshmen Eric Stiles and Jorge Nieto will play in the midfield. Seniors Nicholas Shedd, Jayvon Thomas and Ricky Johnson and sophomore Anthony Espinoza could see action at forward.

Hauser

The Jets return six starters from a team that went 3-6-2.

Senior Pete Trotter is back in goal, and senior Evan Shaw and junior David Newcomb return on defense. Junior Andrew Titus and sophomore Justin Stafford are back in the midfield and junior Joe Sweet returns at forward.

Junior midfielder Matt Sweet, was injured last year. Senior Clayton Wilson saw plenty of action in the midfield.

Senior forward Kyler Davis moved in from Tennessee and became eligible for the sectional. He then scored three goals in two sectional games.

Sophomore Joe Hunter could see action on defense. Pato Cicero, and exchange student from Mexico, will play a lot in the midfield. Juniors Caleb Orlich and Cameron Hartog, both of which moved in from Columbus East, also could see action.

“They’re looking very good,” Hauser coach Andy Hunnicutt said of his team.

Columbus Christian

The Crusaders will try to climb over the .500 mark this season after falling just short last year.

Senior Evan Reed is back in goal. Senior center back Judah Haynes and junior outside back Aaron Armarales return on defense.

Sophomore Levi Sallee and freshmen Josh Jones and Grace Isley are back in the midfield. Juniors Kyle Foster and Taylor Hilliard return at forward.

Senior Jacob Behrman, freshmen Abby Haynes, Evan Graham and C.J. Reed eighth-graders Garrett Spurgeon and Blake Barker could play in the midfield or on defense.

“We have talent,” Columbus Christian coach Jessica Decker said. “We see more raw skills being very advantagteous on the field. We’re more of an offensive team this year, which is something that has not really happened for Columbus Christian, at least not for a long time, so I’m excited about that.”

Jennings County

The Panthers lost eight seniors, including six starters, from a team that went 10-7-2 and improved from eighth place to fourth in the HHC.

Senior Robbie Beal, who led the team with 12 assists and added six goals, moves from forward to center midfield. Senior outside midfielders Andrew Green and Nick AmRhein also return, along with junior center midfielder Adrian Miller. Sophomore Justin Copeland moves from outside back to forward.

Senior center and outside back Trevor Maschino was the first sub off the bench. Junior Dalton Craig at center back and sophomore Gavin McKinney at outside back or center back will move into the lineup.

Freshman Keagan Craig and sophomores Abel Rueda and Dylan Boswell could play forward or outside back. Juniors Chance Newkirk and senior Luke Bowling are battling for the goalkeeper spot.

“As long as we stay healthy and do the small things right, it will give us a chance to win games where on paper, it looks like we shouldn’t win,” Jennings coach Brad Morris said. “But it is really going to take the guys’ commitment to the game and doing the small things right.”

Brown County

The Eagles could be rebuilding after losing 10 seniors, including seven starters from a 5-7-2 team.

Brown County does have its goalkeeper back in senior Noah Seidle. Also returning are juniors Will Ryan and Ben Rygiel in the center midfield and junior Logan Fittz at forward.

Junior Landon Cambridge also saw plenty of action at forward. Freshmen Will Normile and Caleb Yaeger will step into outside midfield spots.

Senior Jalan Armstrong and junior Curtis Higgins will play center back. Junior Matt Chaiyasit could play one outside back, while sophomores Aidan Johnson and Whitten Keith are battling for the other outside back spot.

“It’s a chance for a lot of guys to really step up from last season into leadership roles,” Brown County coach Erich Nolan said. “It’s a small group of guys, but I think we’ll have a good season.”

Trinity Lutheran

The Cougars had only 13 players out for the team early this week. But they started last year with 10 and finished with 15.

Returning from last year’s 6-8-2 squad are junior center midfielder Noah Criswell,¬†sophomore center midfielder A.J. Goecker, junior outside midfielder Sam Hayes, sophomore outside midfielder Josiah Foster, junior¬†center back Jacob Crockett, junior outside back Andrew Emily and sophomore outside back Kohei Magino.

Senior Skyler Stahl and freshman Kaleb Baumgartel will step in at forward. Freshman Sawyer Doggett will play in the center midfield and sophomore Jacob Keith takes over in goal.

Senior newcomer Kegan Prentice and sophomore newcomer Trent Shoemaker also could see action.

“We were a little worried if we could get enough incoming players and new players to give us a shot,” Trinity coach Brandon Tabeling said. “After the first week of practice, we did a couple of short-sided scrimmages, and we were impressed with how hard they worked. It’s going to be somewhat of a rebuilding year, so we’re going to use it to build up with the players we have and then next year, kind of build on what we’re doing.”

At a glance

2016 boys soccer schedules for Bartholomew County schools:

Columbus East

Monday;Floyd Central;6 p.m.

Aug. 20;at Center Grove Classic;10 a.m.

Aug. 23; Seymour;7:30 p.m.

Aug. 25;Bloomington North;7:30 p.m.

Aug. 27;at Columbus North;8 p.m.

Aug. 31;at East Central;7:30 p.m.

Sept. 6;at Bedford North Lawrence;7:30 p.m.

Sept. 10;Fishers;1 p.m.

Sept. 12;Jennings County;7:30 p.m.

Sept. 17;at Mt. Vernon Classic;9 a.m.

Sept. 22;at Madison;7:30 p.m.

Sept. 24;New Albany;2 p.m.

Sept. 26;Bloomington South;8 p.m.

Oct. 1;at Jeffersonville;1 p.m.

Columbus North

Tuesday;East Central;7 p.m.

Aug. 18;at Bloomington North;7:30 p.m.

Aug. 25;at Cathedral;7 p.m.

Aug. 27;Columbus East;8 p.m.

Sept. 1;Franklin Central;7:30 p.m.

Sept. 3;Westfield;11:30 a.m.

Sept. 8;Southport;7:30 p.m.

Sept. 9;at North Central Invitational;TBA

Sept. 10;at North Central Invitational;TBA

Sept. 15;at Perry Meridian;7:30 p.m.

Sept. 17;Center Grove;noon

Sept. 24;Conference Indiana tourney at Southport;TBA

Sept. 27;at Seymour;7:30 p.m.

Sept. 30;Carmel;7:30 p.m.

Columbus Christian

Tuesday;at Bloomington Lighthouse;5:30 p.m.

Aug. 19;at Horizon Christian;5 p.m.

Aug. 30;at Suburban Christian;5 p.m.

Sept. 6;at Henryville;6 p.m.

Sept. 9;Crosspointe Christian;5 p.m.

Sept. 12;Bloomington Lighthouse;5:30 p.m.

Sept. 15;Hauser;5 p.m.

Sept. 17;Horizon Christian;1 p.m.

Sept. 20;Christel House Academy;5:30 p.m.

Sept. 26;Henryville;6 p.m.

Sept. 29;Providence Cristo Rey;5:30 p.m.

Hauser

Aug. 20;at Southwestern (Shelby);10 a.m.

Aug. 25;at Knightstown;5:30 p.m.

Aug. 30;at Oldenburg Academy;5:30 p.m.

Sept. 1;Trinity Lutheran;5 p.m.

Sept. 6;at Morristown;5 p.m.

Sept. 8;at Irvington Prep;5:30 p.m.

Sept. 13;at Southwestern (Shelby);5 p.m.

Sept. 15;at Columbus Christian;5 p.m.

Sept. 17;at Anderson;4 p.m.

Sept. 20;Morristown;5 p.m.

Sept. 22;Indianapolis Lutheran;5 p.m.

Sept. 26;at Franklin County;5:30 p.m.

Sept. 28;at Henryville;5:30 p.m.

Sept. 29;Greensburg;5:30 p.m.

SHARE
Ted Schultz is sports editor for The Republic. He can be reached at tschultz@therepublic.com or 812-379-5628.