Benjamin Russell’s boys soccer program quietly put together a strong campaign and ultimately finished the regular season off as area champions.
Not only did the area champions enter the postseason as the top-seeded program from the area and even punch a ticket to host their first game in the postseason, the Wildcats completed their first goal.
“At the beginning of the season our team set goals for the team and as individuals,” coach Austin Teel said. “We accomplished our first goal by winning our area and also not losing an area game along the way. Our second goal was to make the playoffs and host the first round so that we can have home field advantage.”
The Wildcats will welcome Helena to their home turf of Martin-Savarese Stadium. On the turf, the Wildcats produced a 5-1-1 record this year and Teel says it keeps his players’ pre-game superstitions going.
“I have 12 seniors and five juniors on this team, so I would say experience is a huge asset for this team,” Teel said. “Out of the 12 seniors, four have been on varsity since their freshmen year. Those four have been part of playoff runs in previous seasons where their sophomore year went to the third round of the playoffs. Those seniors have set the tone for practice this week as we prepare for our game against Helena.”
Helena enters the postseason with a 7-7-1 record according to the AHSAA brackets, with five of those losses coming on the road. This game will come down to the Wildcats playing 80 minutes of BRHS brand soccer.
“I have been telling the boys all year if we can play 80 minutes of BRHS brand of soccer, we can play with anyone in the state,” Teel said confidently. “Playing 80 minutes of soccer for our game this Thursday will be the biggest key to us competing. BRHS brand of soccer starts with effort then playing simple & smart, and being mentally focused for the entire 80 minutes.”
The game is slated for a Thursday start but Teel is looking forward to six key players standing out on the pitch for the program. Teel says he’s looking for his GK Campbell Woods to keep a clean sheet, (CB) Kory Self to anchor the back line (CMs) Landon Daniel and Alex Law to set the tempo and tone of the game with (S) Tate Reynolds and Brandon Welcher giving constant energy and effort to get a goal.
“We are looking forward to our game this Thursday against Helena and are ready for the fight,” Teel said confidently.
The Wildcats and Helena’s boys game start at Martin-Savarese Stadium after the girls game at 7:30 p.m.