Warren Central Boys soccer wrote their own story this year after coming off of a rough last season, but this year they came back much stronger. The team accomplished many things this year, such as making a run to the county championship game and winning their first conference game in more than five years.
“ [I was] very happy with what we did throughout the season and I think it is an excellent building point for our future,” head coach Robert Pels said.
Many others can agree that the team has an excellent building point for many seasons to come.
“I think the season exceeded everyone’s expectations and was a major success,” senior captain Gabe Wells said.
The Warriors started out the season with a loss against North Central, but then came back to get a win at Mount Vernon. The games kept going back and forth for the Warriors and then on Sept. 2 the Warriors beat Lawrence Central for their first MIC conference win for the first time in over five years.
After that, the Warriors had a rough patch of games before they went to Whiteland and piled a bunch of goals on them. From then on, they were locked in. They went on and made a run to the county championship and then they made it to the sectional semifinal where the season ended in a 2-1 loss to Cathedral.
“We are gonna have a challenge of having a lot of new faces on the varsity side [next year], but I think that the progress we made this year is really gonna lay the foundations for years and years to come,” Pels said.
COVID-19 had a large effect on the season in many different ways.
“COVID-19 changed how much we were able to communicate,” starting goalkeeper Jose Davalos said.
The way practice was run and how people could interact changed due to having to take extra steps to stay safe.
“Luckily, we never had to stop practicing or stop playing games, which a lot of teams around the state did, so we are very blessed on that front,” Pels said.
COVID-19 also led to less practice time before the season, which made it harder to do more sophisticated things right away.
“We lost a lot of time to develop players in the offseason and in the summer,” Wells said.
Losing that time in the summer led to having to keep improving on basic skills throughout the season and it showed in the beginning of the season.
Next year, the team will be very young and many will be inexperienced on the Varsity team. Over the offseason, the team will be having practice sections in the weight room to work on strength and agility.
“It takes a lot of individual work and fitness [to continue to get better],” Wells said.
Overall, the boys soccer team wrote their own story and changed how people look at them. The team next year and for many years to come will have the same goal. The team had 13 seniors this year, which will make for a very young team next year.
“So, I am really excited to be around these young guys, young guys that got a lot of time on JV this year and just to help them progress and continue our success” Pels said.