Panthers have experience, strong work ethic

by Greg Ceilley of The Review staff

PLYMOUTH – The Plymouth boys soccer team is hoping its hard work will pay big dividends this season.

The Panthers return 10 letter winners, including two allconference players, from last year’s squad which repeated as the Eastern Wisconsin Conference champion and was a Division 3 regional finalist. PHS, which lost five all-league firstteam picks to graduation, finished 11-1 in the EWC and 15-7 overall.

“I have never seen a team that works so hard. Their hard work in the off-season is evident on the field,” said fifth-year Panther head coach Rommy Herrera.

“They are positive, talented and coachable which is all you can ask for in a team. I am very excited to see what this season brings us in a new conference.”

Herrera said the players’ endurance is also a strength along with being positive, talented and coachable.

The Panthers are in the newly formed East Central Conference. The other former EWC schools to join the ECC are Kewaskum, Waupun and Campbellsport.

Plymouth’s all-conference players returning from 2014 are senior midfielders Ryan Holec and Aidan Woida who earned first-team and second-team honors, respectively. Holec is a three-year varsity player. Woida was named the Panthers’ mostimproved player last year.

The other letter winners back are seniors Eric Novak, Nick Freund, Corby Gafney, Layton Albright, Collin Meyer, Noah Joseph, David Hassel and junior Jacob Welsh. Holec, Joseph and Woida are the team captains.

“A commitment from play- ers and the drive to be successful are essential for a successful season,” said the coach.

He said every player has an important role on the team.

“Each player works hard during every practice, so that when their moment comes they are ready,” Herrera pointed out.

“We have a large roster with 22 players and a lot of talent in all areas of the field.”

Herrra and his team have lofty goals.

“As always our goals are to be conference champions and make it to the state tournament. I am excited to play in a new conference this year with new competition,” he said.

The Panthers lost in the regional finals last season, 1-0, to Luxemburg-Casco which went on to earn a berth in the state semifinals.

Herrera offered his thoughts on the ECC competition.

“This being a new conference my expectation is that we will be challenged at high levels in every game. I don’t think that there are any clear favorites at this time,” he said.

Kettle Moraine Lutheran figures to be a strong ECC title contender. The Chargers lost in the D-4 sectional semifinals to Sheboygan Christian/Lutheran last year and were ranked No. 3 in the Wisconsin Soccer Coaches Association 2015 preseason D-4 poll.

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