Team reflects on soccer season
Eudora High School soccer coach Erik Peltzman loves the fact that most of his players could repeat their accomplishments next year and in the fall of 2004.
"It feels really good," Peltzman said. "I think it says a lot for the future of our program. These kids know they're part of history, and they're setting the precedent. I think they're ready for the challenge."
The Eudora co-ed soccer program presented its players with awards at an end of the season banquet Nov. 13.
Sophomore sweeper/stopper William Bock won the team's Most Valuable Player award. Bock joined the inaugural soccer program after running cross country as a freshman.
"We became a defensive team and Bock set an example for all the players to get better," Peltzman said.
"We wanted to reward him for that effort."
Sophomore goaltender Mark Shutt, who recorded a season-high 38 saves against eventual class 4A-1A state champion Kansas City Christian, was awarded the team's most valuable defensive player. Shutt played freshman football last fall.
"He's meant a lot," Peltzman said of Shutt. "He's kept a lot our games close. If we didn't lose (sophomore midfielder) Tyler Hartpence, we probably would have won the Manhattan (Flint Hills Christian) game."
Hartpence and freshman striker Jacob Gillihan were honored as co-offensive Most Valuable Players.
"I said he (Gillihan) was a surprise at the beginning of the year," Peltzman said. "He gave 110 (percent) all the time. He definitely was a valuable player on initely was a valuable player on offense."
Peltzman said Hartpence played with so much intensity that he could have helped the Cards win a game or two. Hartpence was injured on a play in which he assisted a goal by sophomore striker Bobby Linzer against Flint Hills Christian. The goal was called off, as Hartpence was covered with blood. Like any good coach, Peltzman was more concerned with Hartpence's safety rather than the goal that was called off. The Cards lost 2-1 and fell to 5A Topeka Highland Park without Hartpence.
"Having to sit out that game, whats to say he wouldn't have made an assist or a goal," Peltzman said. "When he got hurt we scored a goal (that was called off.)"
Senior midfielder Tressie Weide, the lone senior on the roster, was named Female Most Valuable Player.
Peltzman said Weide stepped up for the Cards in the regular season finale against Highland Park.
"Being a senior, she played that role really well," Peltzman said. "In the Highland Park game, she was pushed around but got up every time and kept going for the ball. She never let the fact we were down 3-0 get to her."
Other awards included most improved male player; freshman utility Jon Snyder; most improved female players, sophomores Jessie Stout, midfielder and sophomore Alicia Howell, and defense, sophomores Andy Coffman, midfielder, and Linzer, best attitude.