One team, one dream


Joe Sullivan

Assistant Coach Emmanuel Ali gives his team a pregame speech before their first home game against Richards last Thursday. The Vikings went on to beat the Bulldogs 2-0.

Joe Sullivan, Sports Writer

The H-F boys soccer team has started their season with a 5-3 record. The Vikings played in the Reavis Invite that included 32 of the best teams around Illinois.

They lost a tough game in the semi-finals to a very good Juarez team. They then came out and won the third place game with a winning goal by senior Caleb Hoereth to beat a solid Bremen team 6-5.

The Vikings are now ranked #3 in Patrick Mcgavin’s Daily Southtown Boys Soccer Rankings. Charles Ward, coached his first season of boys varsity soccer last year and made a big jump from the past few years. Ward is now the varsity coach for both boys and girls soccer.

“We want to make sure that we grow as a team, not get stagnant, and stay humble. We are gonna be ready for the long run of the season and try to get to the playoffs,” Ward said.

The team has come a long way after winning only one game two years ago. Last year the Vikings had a much better season going 7-10-4. There 4-1 start, looks to show possibility for a breakout season.

”The first three wins were just a confidence boost for us. We knew we were a good team and we came out and executed,” senior goalie Devin Gorton said. Gorton got a lot of help with big goals from senior Jack Hurley and from Daily Southtown player of the week, senior Luiz Ramirez.

Hurley, a four year varsity player, wants to go out with a successful senior season. “This is the first year we’ve had where I think so many people have cared so much and everyone is committed,” Hurley said.

It’s obvious that this group of seniors are taking a leadership role and have big goals for the rest of the season. The Vikings have a statement to be made and it looks like teams around the state of Illinois, will all know their name by the end of the season.

“Our expectations are to get a top five seed in the playoffs and to win at least a few playoff games. We have a really good team and a lot of returning players, so it will be interesting to see what we do throughout the rest of the season,” senior Jacob Hodges said.

For the young guys, this is only the beginning of their journey. It is a learning experience, but it also prepares them for this season and in the future.

“We have a really nice core group of kids that have been with us for 3-4 years,” Ward said. “They’ve been really good with bringing the young guys in and taking them under their wing.”

This year, the squad added three sophomores and a freshman to their varsity roster. “There’s definitely a change in pace and skill compared to freshman soccer, but the coaches do a good job, and the team atmosphere is great,” sophomore Will Goldberg said.

The Vikings road to the playoffs continues as they finish up the Pepsi Showdown tournament this weekend.