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Columbus North boys soccer ready to chase another crown
August 19, 2013Columbus North High School
It's a new season and a new mind-set for the Columbus North boys soccer team.
Coming off the Class 2A state championship in 2012, the Bull Dogs are focused on fielding another strong team without looking back to past accomplishments.
"A friend of my indicated that there is nothing to defend in terms of championships," CN coach Andy Glover said. "That is behind us and we need to move forward, taking the lessons learned from the past season and integrating them into the current season.
"The team operates under the philosophy that nothing is given to us, and that we must earn all of our accomplishments together. This holds true for the full spectrum of participants, from the managers to the coaching staff. We are all in this together and do our best to fully invest ourselves to the cause."
Eight players who saw regular action as the Bull Dogs went 17-1-4 last season return.
Senior midfielder Andre Abedian, who was selected second-team all-state by the Indiana Soccer Coaches Association, is the top holdover. He is rejoined by classmates Riley Belding, Will Bridgeman, Keaton Voegerl, Parker Hirsch, Ben Davis and Matt Verplank.
Abedian tallied two goals with four assists, while Belding netted three goals and five assists. Bridgeman contributed one goal and four assists, while Voegerl tallied eight goals and six assists. Hirsch had three goals and four assists, while Davis and Verplank posted respective goals-against averages of 0.77 and 2.00 as goalkeepers.
Senior Ethan Smith, who tallied four goals and one assist in a partial season, is back on the team. Others likely to factor are juniors Andrew Gold, Byron Barger, Brayton Thornburg and Jerrett Stark as well as sophomores Alex Davidson, Sam Snider and Tyler Heathcote.
Glover said he still is uncertain of a lineup.
"The best response I can give you is that the best 11 will play," he said. "There are many things changing as the season unfold."
At the same time, the coach is pleased with what he has seen in workouts in August.
"The mind-set of the team is a huge quality that I'm delighted with at the moment," Glover said. "The work ethic across the board is quite high. This is having a trickle-down effect on the younger players, which speaks to the climate and culture of the team."
Columbus North opens its season at 7 p.m. Tuesday (Aug. 20) at East Central. It then visits Jasper at 1:30 p.m. Saturday (Aug. 24) and hosts Cathedral at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 29. The Bull Dogs face Columbus East at 6 p.m. Aug. 31, travel to the Fort Wayne Canterbury Invitational on Sept. 21 and host Fort Wayne Canterbury on Oct. 4.
As the season evolves, Glover is hopeful it prepares the group for another long tournament run.
"We hope to be in optimal form for the postseason," he said.