A division switch and an experienced lineup boost Warriors’ hopes this season

By Tom Robinson - For Sunday Dispatch
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Wyoming Area could be poised to make a breakthrough in boys soccer this season.

The Warriors, a last-place team in Division 1 of the Wyoming Valley Conference last season, make the move to Division 2 at a time when they are loaded with experienced players and ready to improve.

“We actually dropped down to Double-A this year, which helps because the past two years Wyoming Area was the smallest school in Triple-A,” second-year coach Rick Branco said of the enrollment classification change on the state and district level that led to the division change within the conference. “Now, we’re one of the biggest schools for Double-A.

“For once, it worked in our favor.”

The outlook changes quickly for the Warriors.

“There’s a lot of good teams in Double-A,” Branco said, “but we feel really good with what we have, especially returning a lot of starters.

“We expect to be very competitive this year. I expect that we will contend. We expect to be one of the top three teams this year. That’s my hope and my expectations with what we have.”

The entire front line returns from a team that won just one conference game a year ago. Senior Eddie Galushka is back along with juniors Gavin Lehart and Nick Belles.

Senior Brett Kostick and junior Luke Coolbaugh are returning starters in the midfield where sophomore Riley Gearhardt also received significant playing time.

Wyoming Area’s four-man backfield will be led by two senior returning starters in the middle, Damian Bronsburg and Mike Remley.

Senior Adam Wisnewski returns in goal.

Depending on combinations that Branco uses, junior midfielder/forwards Josh Cumbo and Stanley Moderski, sophomore defender/midfielder Matt Lewis, freshman defender/midfielder Sean Burke and freshman defender Zack Kostick all have a chance to break into the lineup.

Wyoming Area opens at home Friday in a non-league game with Blue Ridge. The Warriors begin their WVC Division 2 schedule Sept. 5 at Lake-Lehman.

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By Tom Robinson

For Sunday Dispatch

Reach the Sunday Dispatch newsroom at 570-655-1418 or email sd@psdispatch.com

Reach the Sunday Dispatch newsroom at 570-655-1418 or email sd@psdispatch.com