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Men’s soccer season comes to a successful end

Craig Sanders
Weber State Men’s Soccer Guard, Brayden Varela #1, running towards the ball down the soccer field.

Men’s soccer season comes to a successful end
Collyn Cowles and Jacoba Jones

The men’s club soccer team has had a memorable season, finishing with a record of 6–4, second overall, just under Brigham Young University.

“At the end of last season we lost a few key players, this year we really focused on having to be more about the team as opposed to the individual,” Assistant Coach Duane Ralphs said.

At the start of the new season, the Wildcats were down a few pivotal players but quickly gained new teammates to fill in those empty slots. This year, they were able to come together as a team and start training early to prepare for the season ahead.

“Once we finally made the team and had our purple and black squads, all our chemistry was already starting to come together because we were already playing with each other for months,” forward for the team, Taggert Ralphs said. “We started off this season very strong; we were 4–0, and then I feel like we got a little comfortable because we realized we did well last year, and now we’re doing well.”

Weber State was put in Group D with Iowa State University, Babson College and Xavier University. The Wildcats topped the group with seven points, they had two wins and one draw in three games. In the first game of the National Open Division, the Wildcats defeated Xavier 3–0 with goals from Jaiden Marriott, Cole Jones and Joe Cloward.

The ‘Cats kept the momentum rolling heading into the second game against Babson College. After two goals from Jaiden Marriott, one from Ethan Harris, Rafael Enriquez and Collin Willey, the Wildcats steamrolled the Beavers 5–1.

In the last game of the group stage, the Wildcats faced off against Iowa State. After being down 1–0 at halftime, Ben Gladwell scored for Weber State to tie the game and secure the draw. The Wildcats are undefeated after three group-stage games.

“What we’ve really been preparing for is making sure that number one we’re healthy and that, positionally, we have the ability to play multiple formations based on our opponents. If we need to score more we play a 4-1-2-3 and if we need to be more defensive, we will change our formation to a 4-2-1-3,” Duane Ralphs said.

After topping off Group D, Weber State faced up against the University of Cincinnati in the tournament’s quarterfinals, and after a tough battle against the Bearcats, the Wildcats’ successful season ended in a 2–1 loss on Friday night.

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Jacoba Jones, Sports reporter

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