Despite losing two primary offensive threats from last season’s state championship squad, the cupboard is not bare for Archbold boys soccer this season.
“We will be looking to replace some real talent from our state champion squad, especially in the attacking part of the pitch,” said head coach Sean Stewart. “We return 4 lettermen on defense, headed by returning starters Noah Cheney (goalkeeper), Devin Witte and Chase Kohler. We expect this experienced defense to have another excellent season, providing a less-experienced attacking front some time to grow.”
Kohler was second team All-Northwest Ohio Athletic League and all-district in 2018, while Cheney made honorable mention All-NWOAL.
Also returning for the Blue Streaks are Elijah Zimmerman (first team all-league, all-district), Trey Theobald (second team all-league), Ethan Hagans (honorable mention all-league), Josiah Magallanes, Josiah Kindinger and Miles Rupp.
“Ethan Hagans is another returning starter in our central midfield, and we will need his experience in that central role,” said Stewart, speaking to what the Streaks have returning. “We do return two players who scored double-digit goals last season in Trey Theobald and Elijah Zimmerman. However, we will need some players to step up around them in order to get the goal production we’re looking for, especially seniors Josiah Magallanes and Jarrett Waidelich. Both got varsity minutes last year off the bench. We also have some players hoping to step up from the JV ranks, as well as a few incoming freshmen who have an opportunity to earn minutes or even a starting role.”
The big task will be filling the void left by the loss of two All-Ohio players, Josh Kidder and Andrew Hogrefe. Kidder was the player of the year in the NWOAL, the Northwest District, as well as the state for Division III. His counterpart Hogrefe was first team all-league and all-district, plus second team All-Ohio.
They also have to replace Cam Collins (honorable mention all-league), Clay Gerig (second team all-league), Sonson Nafziger (honorable mention all-league), Javier Peche (honorable mention all-league) and Alexis Herrara.
But, outside of the losses, the Streaks still have one of, and possibly the most talented teams in the NWOAL this year. They will be looking for another league title.
“We expect to compete strongly for an NWOAL title with Bryan and Liberty Center,” said Stewart. “We also hope to grow throughout the season and make another strong postseason run.”
Archbold hosts Pettisville on Saturday at 8 p.m.
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010