Last season the Weston boys soccer team won the SWC championship.
It turns out, some of the toughest games they played, were at practice.
The Trojans graduated 11 starters from that team and many observers thought that meant the team would take a step back.
The only ones who did not believe that were the returning Weston players.
What thy knew that nobody else did was what happened at practice every night last season.
“The 11 seniors were the 11 starters last year and every night at practice, we would scrimmage them and two-out-of-three times, the subs would win,” current Weston senior Mason Asphar said “We felt like we were the best team they played all season. The fact that we could beat the team that won the championship, that was a green light for us this season.”
Asphar said the team took exception not only to not being picked to repeat, but not even being listed among the favorites in the league.
“When they released the favorites to win the league this year, there were five of them and we weren’t one of them,” he said. “That was just motivation. We saw that, printed it out and posted it up in the locker room. We keep adding to the list of our goals and we keep getting better.”
Despite the wins at practice last season, Weston coach Kevin Fitzsimmons was not sure how exactly his team would come out of the gate in 2019.
The answer was, the Trojans picked up right where they left off despite not returning one starter.
“Coming off last season they felt like, we can do this. But in the preseason, we didn’t win one game, we even lost to the alumni,” Fitzsimmons said. “Then we had a turning point against Watertown (2-2 tie). Since that game we have been building confidence and getting better.”
Weston is 5-0-2 and last week had two improbable results.
Tuesday, the team trailed Pomperaug 3-1 at halftime. With 2.5 seconds remaining, Max Weiss scored to give them a 3-3 tie.
Thursday night, despite Barlow controlling much of the play, Weston got a late goal from Jacob Strouch for a 1-0 win over their rivals.
CHINA TO COGINCHAUG
Coginchaug is out to a 6-2-1 start, having not lost in its last six games while allowing only three goals in that span.
The team romped over North Branford Wednesday 6-0.
Hugh Barrett and Anthony Gavrilovic each scored twice against North Branford.
Thursday’s home game against Portland, a 0-0 tie, drew a large crowd from the surrounding towns.
Included in the crowd were visiting students from Ningbo, China who are currently being hosted at Coginchaug.
The festivities were dampened by the rain Thursday with a few less of the visiting students than anticipated.
Ledyard coach Bill Glenney was not sure what he had coming into the season and just where his team would fall in the ECC.
The Colonels have exceed expectations, so far.
The team is 7-1-0 and has won five straight in the ECC.
Tuesday, they will face the Fitch team that handed the Colonels their only loss (5-3) this season.
The offense has been led by a pair of sophomores in leading scorers Nick Washington and Daimon Pollard.
Over the last three games Washington has four goals and three assists, while Pollard has five goals and three assists.
Trumbull is on fire.
The Eagles have scored 15 goals in their last three games, while conceding none.
On the season, Trumbull has outscored opponents 19-4 with five clean sheets on the record.