Published: Sep 05, 2006 08:25 AM
Modified: Sep 05, 2006 08:25 AM
A time for rebuilding
New Cary soccer coach Ron Brown works with players as they take on new roles
One of the many things a new coach must do when he takes over a team is prove himself to the upperclassmen who played for the previous coach the longest.Fortunately for first-year Cary High soccer coach Ron Brown that was not a big problem. Unfortunately, however, that meant he was taking over a team with little varsity soccer experience.This yearÂ’s team returns only two players with starting experience from last yearÂ’s team. And two of the players that moved on from last yearÂ’s senior-laden squad were Brooks Haggerty and Zack Schilawski, both of whom are now playing college soccer in the ACC.Â“ItÂ’s very difficult to replace those guys from last yearÂ’s team,Â” Brown said. Â“ItÂ’s a huge gap to overcome. IÂ’m new to the area, but I know the team was good last year with all the seniors.Â”One positive thing, though, that comes from losing 11 seniors and having to replace all that leadership is the current players have to step up and embrace new roles. According to Brown, seniors Sean Klemm and Sean Carter stepped up even before the season and became leaders.Â“They were here this summer after I got the job,Â” Brown said. Â“They helped organize players for preseason workouts. TheyÂ’ve been leaders since the beginning.Â”Brown went on to mention a long list of other players with potential who he will count on this year to contribute to the success of team. But after starting the season 0-3 and being outscored 17-4 in the three games, Brown realizes this is a rebuilding year.Â“It is absolutely a rebuilding process for us,Â” he said. Â“And itÂ’s difficult because weÂ’re even asking guys to do different things and play different positions than they did last year.Â”Brown added he has also worked on developing a new approach to how the players play the game.Â“Last year I think the guys had a strong offensive mindset,Â” he said. Â“And some of them maybe didnÂ’t have to play defense a whole lot. This year IÂ’m asking them to play more of a defensive game.Â”Another factor contributing to the difficulty of the rebuilding process is the reassignment of students. This year, with the opening of new two new high schools in the area, Cary lost about 500 students, according to Brown, who is also the dean of students at the high school.Brown said the loss of students significantly lowered the pool of kids to draw from for the soccer team.Â“We only had 36 total kids tryout for both the J.V. and varsity teams,Â” he said. Â“And I saw some rosters of other teams that had 24 players on each team, J.V. and varsity.Â”But all the rebuilding and reassignment aside, Brown has seen some improvement so far this year and is optimistic about the teamÂ’s future.Â“The guys are quite capable,Â” Brown said. Â“We had a scrimmage tournament in Hickory before the season where we played three games. We won one and tied two games and we played well. Â“Then we had a third of the team come down with a gastrointestinal problem, so last week I think we were dragging a little bit. We play well in the first half and then we get behind in the second half and the bad just gets worse.Â“But we absolutely have a good skill level on this team.Â”
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