2008 - 2009 Valley Christian Boys Varsity Soccer - Season Preview
The program has been building. The team has taken
it's lumps the past few years while it patiently awaited a turnaround.
The expectations will be high this year as the team's improvements will
be on display.
Head Coach, John Basanese, and assistant Donny Fugate's
squad will return twelve players from last year's team. Of those
players, nearly all of them saw significant playing time and many were
starters. In addition, several exciting players will be coming up
from the JV team, and playing key roles.
Coach Basanese points out the progress the program has
made, and it's impact on the varsity team's results.
"Our mission was to improve our JV program, because
that's obviously our feeder program. As we've done that, we've
been able to leave other players on the JV to get more playing time, and
come to varsity as experienced players in the WCAL. Our opponents
in the WCAL have always done this, but we're finally having the numbers,
and quality where we can follow this model. This year, we will
witness the significance of this system as we have an influx of last
year's JV team to this year's varsity. We're pretty excited,"
The program will hold fast to it's
mission statement, and continue to
play with class, and respect it's opponents and the game.
"It's at our foundation. The coaching staff has worked hard to
implement a culture that demands respect of each other, and our
opponents. We will not deviate from that, it's at our core.
We represent Valley Christian, and it's our job as coaches to help
mentor and support our student athletes as they become young men.
We take that seriously," Basanese said.
The team's non-league schedule this year will include fixtures with:
Piedmont Hills, Santa Teresa, Westmont, The King's Academy, Sacred Heart Prep, and
Sunnyside. VC will also scrimmage Concord High School,
and host an alumni game.
The Warriors will return the CCS' top goalkeeper,
Austin Mansker. Austin was named the WCAL's defensive player of
the year as a Sophomore, and enjoyed a successful club season that
included a call-up to tryout for the U-17 National team in Florida.
A great leader, Austin anchor the VC defense. Expect to see a
bigger, stronger Mansker as he continues to grow physically and as a
"We have the best goalie in CCS, and in his age group, he also is
one of the top GK's in the US. We're
very fortunate, and he's a better kid than he is a goalie. Austin
is on his way to big things, and we're lucky to have him," Basanese
The Warriors will feel last year's senior class'
departure in the defense more than anywhere else, losing starters
Walitsch, Seaman, and Cardoza. However, several
players who have been waiting in the wings are ready to go, including
the versatile Danny Hittler, hard working
Jacob Ruiz, and athletic
staff is also looking at moving senior Jake Joseph
to the sweeper
position. Jake plays there with his club, and has shown to bring a
calming presence to the back line. James Gizzi also has played
marking back for his club, and will compete for time in the back.
From the JV,
the Warriors will get Will Pitman, and Justin Berding who will solidify
the competition for time at defender.
"We lost some
great players last year, and many of them came from our defense.
We'll miss the leadership back there, but I think the guys we have ready
to step in will fill the shoes. You have to play defense in this
league, and we will focus on building from the back. I'm excited
to work with these guys," coach Donny Fugate said.
will be stacked, with players like Kevin Tarangioli,
Alex de Leon, and Ian Karlsson. The play will run through the
midfield where Tarangioli will control the offense with his passing, and
Cordeiro will hold down the defensive mid.
leading scorer from last season, Alex de Leon, is slated to drop into a
midfield role. Already one of the league's most exciting players,
Alex continues to grow, and already has 12 goals in his young career.
The coaching staff is looking for him to breakout in his Junior season.
to have a lot of skill in our midfield. We have great size in
Justin Berding, and one of the WCAL's top passers in Kevin Tarangioli.
We're also going to be creative with Alex, who's been playing midfield
for his club, and Britt is a great crosser of the ball on the outside.
We also feel that Justin Cordeiro is one of the better defensive mids in
the WCAL. We're excited to see how things come together.
We think we're doing pretty well there." Basanese said.
line will feature two veterans, and some newcomers.
and Joseph Rosa-Diniz play together for their club, and will partner to
form the VC strike force. Trevor's speed and nose for the goal
will be a vital part of the VC offense as he sees his role increase.
look to score goals, and use his tantalizing dribbling ability to draw
will also be trying out reinforcements from the JV with Zachary
Theilmann, Spencer Ramsey, and Sam Mathison looking ready to join
"You have to
score goals, or you won't ever win. We need to be better this year
about putting the ball in the net. We'll have great service from
the midfield, so the pressure will be on our forwards to get the job
done. I'm excited to see how Trevor and Joseph respond. I
have a lot of confidence in them," Basanese said.
The team has
also said goodbye to coach David Fugate as he leaves to become the head
coach of the girl's freshman soccer team.
replacement will be Donny Dequine. Donny played his high school
soccer for Coach Basanese at Valley Christian. He was named 1st
team All CCS his senior year, and went on to receive a soccer
scholarship to Azusa Pacific University. At APU, Donny went to the
National Championship Final game twice, and was an integral part of
serves at the sports ministry pastor at Venture Christian Church, a fact
not lost on Basanese.
Dequine is a perfect blend of coach for us. Not only was he
successful at VC as our captain, but he's a spiritual leader in the
community, and links us to a great youth group over at Venture.
The kids will love him as a person, and benefit from his instruction and
leadership. I couldn't be more excited!" Basanese said.
work with the midfielders, and focus on team shape. Valley
Christian is very lucky to have Donny aboard!
lining up nicely for VC to breakout of a playoff drought this year, but
as Basanese says, it will not be easy.
is, we play in one of the best leagues in the state. We know
everyone is going to be good as well. In my experience, potential
is always joined by it's good friend... expectations. We have expectations
this year. We are not rebuilding, we need to execute, and I'm
excited for that."
"The kids are
great, the school really gets behind us, and we're going to give it our
all." Basanese concluded.
tryouts will be starting October 20th! Details will be
coming soon, so stay tuned to the website.
these two important things:
1. No player
without a current physical (they last 1 calendar year) will be allowed
to tryout. Please get this done asap! Turn them into the
are not permitted to tryout for varsity until the JV team starts.
This is a WCAL rule, and all freshman who wish to be considered for
varsity will be given an ample chance.
Warriors. Family. Everything.