ADDISON COUNTY — The year 2010 proved not one to go down in the record books for the local high school boys’ soccer teams. All had bright moments, especially early in the season, but ultimately none finished above .500 or won a postseason game.
All four were buoyed by strong individual efforts from players who showed talent, leadership and positive attitude. They are recognized here in the 2010 Addison Independent Boys’ Soccer All-Star Team, including high-scoring Player of the Year Timo Krekeler, a Middlebury Union High School junior.
Coach Doc Seubert’s MUHS squad enjoyed the most success, completing a .500 regular season that could have been better if not for a rash of early-season injuries; it included a rare sweep of rival Mount Abraham. Four Tigers made this squad.
Coach Mark Quenneville’s Otter Valley group improved its quality of play and won three times. A standout goalie and two versatile field players are honored here.
Coach Mike Corey’s Eagles also won three times. Three juniors remained positive in a season that did not measure up to most expectations for Mount Abe, and played well enough to merit spots on the Independent team.
Coach Kevin Hayes’s young Vergennes squad started well, but injuries and inexperience caught up with the Commodores and they finished with a two-win campaign. A steady sophomore defender with the ability to step into the attack is recognized here.
Selections were made based on observation, statistics, consultation, and evaluation of players’ overall contribution to their teams’ success. Congratulations to the following:
TIMO KREKELER, MUHS JUNIOR, PLAYER OF THE YEAR. Notes: German exchange student who led all local players with 12 goals, adding three assists, while missing two of 15 games and almost all of a third ... Strong finisher in the box with either foot or his head, and a smart player off the ball who knows how to get open and come to passes ... Quick first step, positioning and strength made him highly effective in tight spaces.
Seubert’s Quotes: “He brought another dimension of game to us for sure. He had an ability to score ... As he was successful offensively, he became even more effective defensively ... He had really good vision ... He held the ball better than anybody else we had ... He was able to weave through people. He was clever that way, and was able to score some really nice goals.”
ETHAN ROY, MUHS SENIOR. Notes: Versatile three-year starter at midfield or striker ... Tireless, speedy athlete who scored six goals and assisted five this fall ... Showed nice touch on the ball, smart decision-making and the ability to make an impact playing centrally ... Strong defender as well as attacker.
Seubert’s Quotes: “Ethan was the engine. Ethan was non-stop ... He would work his tail off offensively and defensively ... He scored some great goals for us ... When he was in the midfield he was a major factor for us, and when he was forward he was dangerous ... He combined well with people and moved really well off the ball.”
GRAHAM BARLOW, MUHS JUNIOR. Notes: Emerged this fall at stopper and defensive midfield ... Tall athlete, strong at ball-winning and playing sound positional defense ... Put solid skills to good use in decision-making, triggering the attack with direct, intelligent ball movement from the back ... Picked up an assist.
Seubert’s Quotes: “Graham is just a big force out there ... He got stronger in the air as the year went by, and strikes the ball well with both feet ... His strength was that he kept the game simple ... He would win a ball and distribute ... He was a real factor in the central part of the field defensively for us ... He had a great break-out year.”
MARROTT WEEKES, MUHS SOPHOMORE. Notes: Talented, versatile player who thrived at central midfield, central defense and striker, scoring three goals and setting up five ... Skilled player who is strong and composed on the ball and in the back ... Showed good field vision and understanding of the game.
Seubert’s Quotes: “Marrott played well beyond his sophomore status ... He’s really quite fearless. He’s very good in the air. He’s got that tenacity that you like to see ... He has a nose for scoring goals, he has the ability to control play out of the central midfield space, and he can be a dogged defender ... He played in every one of those spaces this year and had success.”
ZACH ELLISON, MOUNT ABE JUNIOR: Notes: Strong, fast center defender who took a step forward this fall in consistency ... Used his speed and understanding of the game to disrupt threats outside the box, and his tenacity to win balls in the box ... Intelligent distributor from the back.
Corey’s Quotes: “(He is) a center back with speed and quickness and the technical skills to get the ball out of tight situations ... Defensively Zach covers a great area in the back, playing from touchline to touchline ... He is quick to the ball and wins most one-on-one confrontations ... He is also very strong in the air, heading away corners and restarts.”
TOMMY NELSON, MOUNT ABE JUNIOR: Notes: After starting as a midfield sub, quickly earned a starting berth on the flank with tireless, intelligent play ... Scored three goals and created many chances with strong play from the wing ... Quick, two-way player who accepted defensive as well as offensive responsibilities.
Corey’s Quotes: “He was the workhorse ... He is by far our best guy in the air ... He’s fast and he serves the ball well ... He’s a good ball-winner, and has a giant engine ... He refined his skills and his vision and became an excellent midfielder ... He became one of our top two or three most valuable people in the course of the season.”
GRAYSON WEBB, MOUNT ABE JUNIOR: Notes: Savvy, skilled forward who tallied six goals and added an assist ... Used his quickness and knowledge of the game to get open, and finished his opportunities well ... Has a high work rate and creates constant pressure on opponents.
Corey’s Quotes: “He’s and intelligent striker who has excellent off-the-ball instincts. He gets to the right places at the right time ... He has quickness and speed and a refined touch on the ball ... He is very active, forcing defenses to move and adjust, creating opportunities for his teammates to attack.”
GRANT ROBIN, OVUHS JUNIOR. Notes: Outstanding ball-stopping goalie and leader who racked up 250 saves this fall ... Shows great quickness across the goalmouth and coming out to break up threats ... Gets off his feet well, and the ball sticks to his hands ... Two-year starter who understands the game and directs his defenders well.
Quenneville’s Quotes: “He has great perception. He looks at the shooters’ feet, and he can tell what side they’re going to ... He punts the ball well. He knows when to throw ... He’s just a great leader ... He demands respect out there. When he talks, they listen to him ... All he’s played all his life is goal, and it shows.”
MATT DIER, OVUHS JUNIOR. Notes: Tireless, speedy two-way midfielder who tallied five goals ... Showed his defensive ability by shutting down Proctor 100-goal scorer Keegan McDonnell in a match ... Intelligent, skilled player who directed traffic for OV at central midfield.
Quenneville’s Quotes: “Matt is a very smart player ... His soccer knowledge is phenomenal ... His foot skills are some of the best I’ve seen ... He commands the middle of the field ... He’s always at the right place at the right time ... He’s plays great defense and offense ... He was our go-to guy.”
JEREMIAH COLE, OVUHS SENIOR. Notes: Smart, relentless defender who spent most of the season at stopper, but also had the skills to step into the attack and scored three goals ... Used his quickness well defensively, and made good decisions with the ball in the back ... Volunteered to step into the goal when injury struck.
Quenneville’s Quotes: “He knew when he could play offense and when he should stay back and play defense ... He is very, very fast. He didn’t get beat much if he got beat at all ... His defense and offense were phenomenal ... He’s very versatile, and he was good at every position.
DEVIN HAYES, VUHS SOPHOMORE. Notes: Savvy, physical central defender who also figured in four of the Commodores’ 11 scores this fall with three goals and an assist ... Defended balls lofted into the box well, and showed poise passing out of the back ... Displayed a strong, accurate foot in taking almost all of the Commodores’ restarts.
Coach Hayes’ Quotes: “He’s very competent on the ball ... I can use him anywhere ... He’s got a great sense of the game ... He’s a got a good touch, a good sense of where to be ... He read the game well. He distributed and played heads-up soccer. He saw the field well and talked as well as a sophomore does ... He’s definitely a future leader.”
Andy Kirkaldy may be reached at email@example.com.