Boys’ Soccer Shuffled Defense Joins Returning Offense

Jackie Wells, Sports Editor

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After a 10-7-2 record and journey all the way to the Western Mass semifinals last year, this year’s boys’ varsity soccer captains hope to steer the Mounties through another successful season. 

The team returns with the same goals they start every season with: qualify for the tournament, win their northern division in Berkshire County, win western Mass, and ultimately, win a state title. “Every year they’re the same,” Coach Blair Dils explained, “you can’t win western mass unless you qualify for the tournament. So we want to make sure we check off those boxes as we get closer and closer to our ultimate goal which is to win states.”  

The teams offense returns all but last years captain and midfielder Luke Swann, who graduated and is now playing at Williams College. On the defensive side, the team graduated goalkeeper and captain David Falk, captain Will Reynolds, and Josef Soza-Foias. 

Leading the newly molded defense are captains Mitchell Jezouit and Owen Crowell. “Those guys work together,” said Dils of Jezouit and Crowell. “They’re good friends, they’re like brothers who crab at each other at times, but they support each other. Seeing how they can lead our defense is really critical for our success.” With three players in new positions, only Crowell returns to a position that he played last year. As Jezouit shifts into the spot of Soza-Foias, Col McDermott takes over Jezouit’s old spot in left back. Junior Oscar Low is the team’s new goalkeeper.  

Senior captain Finn Welch leads the offense as the returning striker. Coming off last season where Welch scored twenty goals, Coach Dils points to him as the “key guy for putting the ball in the net.” Filling Swann’s vacant midfield spot is senior Emi Soza-Foias, while juniors John Scavlem and Julius Munemo join him in midfield.

“I would imagine Soza-Foias flew under the radar last year with a lot of coaches,” Coach Dils said, “but he’s a really high level player and a top player in Western Massachusetts.” Three games into the year, Soza-Foias pairs two goals with four assists, eighth grader Cedric Lemaire claims 1 goal, while Welch leads the score count with four goals and one assist. Completing the attack, senior Toby Foehl and junior Leo Rossitter return as wings. “We have all been playing together for a very long time, which helps with the fluidity of the team play as well as the chemistry among players,” noted Welch. 

The team started off the year with their first game in Longmeadow on September 3. It was only the first of many hard, out of county matches the team will face. “Playing those big D1 schools that compete for the D1 state championship are really special games for us,” said Dils of games like the Longmeadow one. 

The team will also face their traditional North Division rivals throughout the season. “We have a big week coming up, as we face two county rivals, both games at home,” said Welch.

Boys’ soccer faces Wachonah on the 24th and Lenox on the 26th.