Soccer Season Sails Smoothly

Boys Start Season 3 – 5 – 1

Photo Courtesy Pastor Photo

Photo Courtesy Pastor Photo

The West Geauga boys soccer team “kicks off” its season with a roster bolstered by 8 seniors on the team, including C.J. Contizano, Miguel DelValle, Zach Edwards, Jimmy Rogant, Antony Tran, Kevin Wenger, Neil Whitmore and Alec Wright. The team captains are Contizano and DelValle. The overall program consists of 24 players on the varsity and 20 on junior varsity. While there is usually, “strength in numbers,” this can be troublesome, as not all players get in to play in the varsity games.

Last season the team finished with a record of 12 wins, 7 losses and 1 tie (overall), 6-1-0 in the CVC. The team also won the Division II Mentor District. Post season awards included Contizano and DelValle earning honorable mention all – CVC. Sophomore Joey DiLalla was also honorable mention all – Division 2, Greater Cleveland.

The coaching staff members for this season are Mr. Mario Gerhardt, head coach, in his third year at West Geauga and 50th year as head coach of high school soccer…yes, you read that right. 50 years !! Mr. Glenn Korenko is in his second year at West G, and he has been a former boys head coach at Harvey High and a girls head coach at NDCL. Mr. Jim McSherry is a volunteer coach, and he has been coaching with Gerhardt for roughly 15 years. Korenko got Gerhardt into coaching 50 years ago. “He organized a club team at Mentor that needed a coach and I became it. Jim was on one of my high school soccer teams at Chagrin in the early 70’s,” said Coach Gerhardt.”

The team’s goal for this season is simple: to score more goals than the other team and win the game. To date, the team’s record is 3 – 5 – 1. They hope to do better in the second half of the regular season. It is also their intention to defend that district championship. One thing the coaches wanted to stress was that, win or lose, they enjoy every day trying to help the team become better soccer players and individuals. “A day without soccer is a day wasted,” added Gerhardt.

CJ said, “Our team is fun and full of energy this year. I love going to practice every day and riding with my teammates, they always keep me going.”

Coach Gerhardt closed by saying, “This is my 50th year coaching and teaching high school soccer and I am still looking forward to every practice and game as I did fifty years ago. I am grateful to all the players who are keeping me young. I do something soccer- related every single day.”

After all, a day without soccer is a wasted day !