The end of Dexter’s soccer season occurred weeks ago with a disappointing 2-1 second-round loss in District play against Chelsea.
Not accustomed to end the season this early, it had been weeks since the Dread soccer players had been together for a team function.
“I am very proud of this group of young men. We faced numerous challenges with injuries and other issues that forced them to grow,” said coach Scott Forrester.
Last year’s Dread squad lost in a heartbreaker in a penalty-kick shootout in the state semifinal game and had eight starting positions to fill this year. This year’s team started off in the strong Dread tradition with four straight wins after their 2-1 record against Division I teams in the Saginaw Heritage Tournament.
The Dreads went 14-8-2 record and finished second in the SEC White Division.
“This is something we aren’t accustomed to…ending our season this early.” said Forrester. “That in mind, I am very proud of these young men because of how they dealt with the many challenges they faced this season. These high school student/athletes grew into young men as they learned to deal with our season’s challenges. Fair or unfair, that’s life, and this team stepped up to the challenges.”
Junior midfielder Austin Graham was named All-District and will return as one of next year’s captains. He finished with six goals and eight assists.
Senior captain goalkeeper Ben Elliott was named to the All-District Team and finished with seven shutouts this year.
Senior midfielder Griffin Keough was awarded the Coaches Award and made the All-District Team finishing with seven goals and six assists on the season.
Senior Caleb Endicott was the team’s Defensive Player of the Year and also All-District finishing with three goals on the year. The team voted his game-winning goal against Midland as the “Goal of the Year” for the team.
Senior forward Blake Leonard was voted the team’s Offensive Player as he was the team’s leading scorer with 13 goals and six assists. Blake was also All-League, All-District, All-Regional and All-State Honorable Mention.
Senior captain midfielder Ben VanderRoest was voted the team’s Most Valuable Player and garnered All-District, All-Regional and honorable Mention All-State honors.
“Ben was a great leader throughout the season as one of our co-captains,” said Forrester. He finished with seven goals and four assists.