The Dons soccer team is 5-0 and has shut out its last four opponents
By Paul Lecker
MARSHFIELD — If the first five games of the 2015 season are an indication, the Columbus Catholic soccer team is going to be a tough nut to crack.
The Dons allowed just one goal in their opener before pitching four-straight shutouts. In fact Columbus did not even allow a shot on goal in three of those games and moved to 5-0 to start the season and 2-0 in the Mid-State Soccer Conference (MSSC) after beating Northland Lutheran 10-0 on Thursday.
Columbus Catholic is the defending Mid-State champion, and coach Jeff Edwards believes this year’s squad has the talent to contend for another title this fall.
“I think we’re going to be a tough team to score on with our defense,” Edwards said. “If we can continue to possess the ball and give our offense some chances, eventually they are going to start going in the net. I think we’re going to be able to compete for the top of the conference like in years past.”
Columbus returns three seniors — Farid Torbey, Alexandra Hutchison, and Matthias Gouin — and also has a strong set of five juniors and 12 underclassmen that have seen playing time thus far.
Five different Dons scored in their win last Monday, and that looks to be the norm this year.
Columbus will try to replace the offense provided by the graduated Sean McCarthy, a first-team all-MSSC player last year that scored 24 goals and had 11 assists in 23 games, and Christian Payant, who netted five goals. Junior Ryan Dieringer — 13 goals, five assists last year — also will be out for the foreseeable future as he undergoes cancer treatment.
“It’s a replacement by committee,” Edwards said. “We’ve got good sophomores and juniors: Charles Payant, Calvin Brown playing midfield, Nick Malovrh, and senior Alexandra Hutchison, her speed will be extremely helpful in getting some space and getting free for some open shots.
“This season, it’s a different team than last season. Last year we would spread it out and try to play more through balls. This year we’re a possession-type team with one- or two-touch passes. We’ve done a really good job of it so far.”
|Dons’ upcoming games|
|Tuesday, Sept. 8||Pacelli at Griese Park, 5 p.m.|
|Thursday, Sept. 10||at Wausau Newman, 5 p.m.|
|Monday, Sept. 14||McDonell/Regis at Griese Park, 5 p.m.|
|Monday, Sept. 21||at Tri-County, 5 p.m.|