EXETER – Wyoming Area has so much experience coming back on defense that boys soccer coach Nick Hufford thinks it is time to open up the attack and try to unleash some additional offense.
“We’re loaded defensively with Sam Giordano, Dave Klaproth and Mike Murphy, those three seniors on the back line, we’re pretty well set back there,” Warriors coach Nick Hufford said.
Brian McNew joins Giordano and Murphy as veteran seniors on the defense. Klaproth, who doubles as the kicker for the football team, is back in goal.
The Warriors will be looking to generate more scoring options after losing Josh Donvito to graduation. Donvito scored 21 goals on last year’s team, which went 8-8 in the Wyoming Valley Conference.
“Offensively, it’s going to be a challenge,” Hufford said. “It’s a matter of who’s going to step up and be that guy or those two guys.”
Hufford will try to help that process along with a strategical change.
“We’re going to change our formation a little bit,” he said. “We’re going to attack. We’re going to go at times. We’re going to play three forwards, a 4-3-3.
“That’s something a little different than what we’re used to, but my coaches and I have decided that we need to focus on the forward end. We’re not worried about what’s going on, on the back line, so we’re going to try it out and give it a shot.
We’re going to play on the attack for the first time in four years.”
Junior forward Ryan Shuleski is back after scoring 11 goals last season.
Senior Ryan Murphy also returns and will alternate between his original position of forward and midfield where he played for the Warriors last year.
“We’re expecting big things from him,” Hufford said.
Another scoring possibility at forward is Bobby Acacio, a newcomer to the team as a senior.
“Bobby Acacio, who came to us from the football team, is one of the most athletic players I’ve ever coached,” Hufford said. “He has the opportunity, because of his speed, to outrun some teams and get some breakaway goals.
“We’re going to use his athletic ability.”
The Warriors, who open Tuesday at Coughlin, last year’s unbeaten conference champion, also return senior Zach Lagrue.
Lagrue will be joined at midfield by freshmen Damian Bronsburg and Brett Kostik.
“I strongly believe we will be in every game and be a tough out, especially come playoff time,” Hufford said.