More good players than positions is a luxury Lowell boys’ soccer coach will just have to work around.
“Actually, it is a nice luxury. It’s creates good competition,” said soccer coach Rich O’Keefe.
The Red Arrows, third in the O-K White, finished with a record of 16-6 last year. Their season ended in a 3-0 district final loss to eventual Division I state champion, Kentwood.
Lowell returns 14 players, eight of which were starters in 2010.
Leading the Red Arrows in their drive for a conference championship are seniors Joe Sweet and Matt Kyllonen.
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“Joe was our leading scorer last year and will play midfield for us again this year,” said O’Keefe. “Matt has a great work ethic, a nose for the ball and is willing to focus on what coaches ask of him.”
Joining Sweet and Kyllonen will be what O’Keefe calls a very good group of juniors.
Alex Ligman will lineup at midfield alongside Sweet while Will Athmann will anchor the Red Arrow defensive unit.
Lowell’s coach says sophomore goalie Liam Kelley will be asked to step up to the challenge. “I think he can and I think this team can step up. They are all about team.”
With what appears to be a club with all the key elements in place, O’Keefe doesn’t deny the expectations run beyond competing. “Obviously we’d like to win the conference and go deeper into the state tournament,” he says.