With a record of 9-2, the Coram Deo Academy Varsity Boys’ Soccer Team is tied for second place in arguably the toughest district in the state; a district that includes 4-time 4A State Champion Grapevine Faith Academy and 2-time 3A State Champion Colleyville Covenant Christian Academy.
While veteran Coach Ryan North never doubted his team’s ability to win games, senior forward Walker Martin knew they would face some tough competition this year.
“We knew that going up a division would greatly increase the competitive nature of the team and that we would have to step up our game to succeed. With many seniors on the team, we were fueled by passion and fight to the end with this new challenge.”
This year, Martin and his tenured teammates were joined by a host of new players, giving the Lions the largest soccer roster in school history. Martin said having a deep bench has affected the team during practice and at games.
“It starts in practice having the ability to have larger drills and more people working out. It also gives a whole new dynamic to the game being able to change our positioning at any moment to create a whole new avenue of attack. It created a whole new sense of “teamship” and community having so many players on the team, everyone is willing to give it all knowing there’s always someone to fill in.”
Senior defender, Reagan Doerstling, said hard work and skill development have been key components to their success thus far.
“This year especially our team has a desire to bring a State Championship to our school. We know that we have the skill to do it and have learned how to play as a unified team that is capable of beating any opponent in front of us.”
As for senior goalie Daniel Drury, who has faced some powerful strikers this year, he said trust among the defenders has made his job much easier than it could have been otherwise.
“For the defense as a unit, especially with the new guys, it has been a learning experience for all of us and it has been a time of huge growth. Many times, in previous years, I haven’t needed them as much, and also I’ve had people in the past that I couldn’t trust, but this year we all do our jobs, and I trust every single one of them to do their job and have each other’s backs, and have my back.“
The season isn’t over yet. The Lions have three more district games before playoffs, one of them again Colleyville Covenant, who barely beat CDA in their first meeting of the season with a golden goal in overtime to win 2-1. Senior Jacob Hubbard says team unity is the key to keeping their playoff hopes alive.
“We need to unite under one goal – to win the championship. Keeping that goal in mind is essential to maintaining our form in these last three games. Our passion and grit has brought us this far and we must continue to push forward with the same intensity, with the attitude of never giving up.”
Senior Night and final home game for the Lions will be this Tuesday, February 3, when they faceoff against Colleyville Covenant at 6pm at McKinnish Park (2340 Sandy Lake Road, Coppell, 75019).
Elizabeth Rogers is with Coram Deo Academy Athletics.