By Emily Hale
As the season comes to a close, the Walled Lake Central men’s varsity soccer team finishes with a 13-8-2 record. Making it to district finals, the team played well before suffering a 1-0 defeat to Catholic Central on October 24 at North Farmington High School.
Earlier in the season, the team won both “The Shield” trophy from Walled Lake Northern, and “The Boot” from Walled Lake Western for the first time since 2012. In 2012, the team won “The Shield” trophy against Northern in penalty kicks, which has only happened a handful of other times in Walled Lake Central history.
The only players who remember that game are the seniors who were on the team three years ago–and there aren’t many of them. “It’s always a big deal when we beat not one but both of our cross town rivals, it’s always nice to add more hardware to the trophy case,” said senior captain Connor Mason.
Some of the team’s favorite games throughout the season were the games against Walled Lake Western and Northern due to the rivalry between the three high schools for nearly every sport. “I enjoyed the Northern game at home because we won “The Shield”, and I scored both of the two goals for the win,” said senior Tommy Gulick.
Although they had a very memorable season, the Vikings unfortunately say goodbye to several players who will graduate in May: Evan Norton, Connor Mason, Jake Rubin, Tommy Gulick, Brenden Slicker, Eddie Perez, Mario Morelli and Elton Gjura.
“I can’t say enough about what the seniors have done for us and when it comes to my captains and those that have been with me on varsity for four years, they will be truly missed,” said head coach Joel Sharpe.
Now the weight of the team transfers to the juniors who will be taking on leadership in the next season to guide the team to many more victories. “Big shoes to fill, but I’m confident in the team’s abilities,” said junior player Noah Ferguson.
The men are clearly prepared to let go of some good friends and ready to pick up the job to prepare for the season to come, which will be just as great as the last. No matter how far separated they may become after high school, though, the soccer family will always be family.