The Greenbrier East Spartans boys soccer team has quietly become the best team in the state of West Virginia.
In a season and school year where COVID-19 concerns affect everything, it has not had any negative effect on the field as East currently holds the number one ranking in the state, and according to MaxPreps, a well known national publication for high school sports, the Spartans are ranked 27th in the nation as of Friday, September 18.
So far this season for head coach Lucas Lemine, East holds a record of 5-0-1 and holds a huge win over Parkersburg that vaulted them into the top spot.
The Spartans have scored 25 total goals on the year while only allowing six to their opponents. A big reason for that is freshman goalkeeper Joe Cochran. Cochran has recorded 12 saves on the year and has three clean sheets (no goals allowed for entire game).
On the offensive side of things, Lanty Rose and Adam Seams have led the way. Rose has nine goals and three assists and Seams has produced eight goals and four assists. The other contributors are Steven Martinez (two goals, two assists), Matthew Cook (two goals), Evan Vogelsong (two goals), Zack Taylor (one goal, two assists), Ryan Wagner (two assists) and Jacob Hixenbaugh (one goal).
These numbers are extremely impressive considering how young the Spartans are across the board. That is what intrigues Lemine.
“We have an extremely young team,” Lemine said. “We only start two seniors and have 32 total players. These kids have worked extremely hard this offseason and start of the fall and have taken full advantage of the opportunity to play through the pandemic,” Lemine continued.
Being ranked number one and almost in the top 25 nationally, one would think there are not many more peaks and valleys to reach, but according to Lemine, his team can still get better.
“I don’t think we have reached our peak as of now, but we are definitely striding in the right direction and hopefully that by the time sectionals roll around we are firing on all cylinders,” he said.
The season was in serious jeopardy before it started due to the coronavirus, but with the way the team has performed, Lemine and his coaches and players are very thankful just to be out on the field running around.
“We understand how fortunate we are to be playing,” Lemine said when asked about the doubt of the season. A team in our section finally got to play a game then went red (on the metric chart) on the following weekend. George Washington, who has been the best for what feels like forever, has never gotten to see the field in terms of competition,” Lemine concluded.
The varisty boys will host Buckhannon-Upshur this Saturday, September 26. The first time the two teams met resulted in the 2-2 tie that shows on East’s record. The Spartans were supposed to play Scott high school, but Boone County turned to orange in the metric chart so they will sit home as of now. After the home game, East will hit the road to play Ripley next Wednesday, September 30.
It is not only the varisty team that is performing well, but also the junior varsity (JV). They sit at 4-1-1. East has scored 15 total goals on the season and have allowed just two to be scored against them.
Graham Clemmons and Bryson Brammer, the goalkeeping duo, have collectively recorded 10 saves and five clean sheets. Drew Beverage has led the way on offense with six goals and one assist. Jason Ream has two goals while Carter Tolliver has three goals. Nic White has added one goal and three assists and Dawson Trusty has scored one goal and also has an assist. Peter Furlong and Gus Adamo have eached scored one goal and Carlos Kanafany has recorded two assists.