Boys soccer kicks off season with big goals

It’s going to be a crazy season this year for the RMHS varsity boys soccer team, as they are going to have rescheduled games and have multiple sports seasons crossing over into one another due to COVID-19. During this season, the players need to stay focused and be prepared to adapt to change.

“It will require a lot of flexibility on a weekly basis,” head coach Brett Olson said. “The overlapping of seasons affects athletes and coaches. We are doing what we can to allow athletes the opportunity to participate in both at the same time.”

The team is looking to finish in the top three in the conference with a good core of returning players, including seniors Tyler Dawson, Ryan Stubitsch and Pablo Zarate.

For many of these seniors, this off-season has looked a bit different than others as players had trouble organizing larger group practices and activities. 

Since soccer is a team game, it is important to practice [and] play with the team before the season gets started, so everyone gets a feel for how everyone plays,” Dawson said. “It was harder to get everybody together all at once to play.”

Even with the struggles of social distancing, many players still found a way to get work in through their club’s training. Team captain, Stubitsch is looking to become an All-State player this year and talked about the work the team was still able to get in.

“I give credit to a lot of the guys on the team; we all put in a lot of work,” Stubitsch said. “With all that’s been going on, our team has also done a good job of making sure we’re in shape for the start of the season.”

It’s apparent that despite the pandemic altering certain aspects of their season, the players are determined not to let that stop them from working on their craft and perfecting it in the off-season. It’s very much a team-oriented game, which Stubitsch pointed out he enjoys.

“I like soccer because it’s very much a team game and requires interplay between every member of the team to be successful,” Stubitsch said. “It definitely requires quick feet, good stamina vision, or the ability to think ahead.”

The hope is that this work and effort put in during their time off will pay off with a top-half finish in the conference this year.