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Knights’ soccer team not getting ahead of itself

– John Myers knows what he has with the Bishop Luers boys soccer team, but that doesn’t mean the Knights’ coach is going to get any lofty goals as the postseason begins with sectionals today.

Myers’ tempered outlook comes after the regular season for Class A No. 2 Luers (15-1-1) included wins over Class A No. 5, defending state champion Canterbury and 2A No. 8 Indianapolis North Central, and a 1-0 loss to Class A top-ranked Guerin Catholic.

“There are some high expectations, but we are going to take it one game at a time,” Myers said. “We haven’t really done anything yet. But when we are playing our style of soccer (possessing the ball), we can pretty much play with anybody.”

The upperclassmen have been the building blocks of an elite program that one day hoped to contend for a state championship. Still, though, Myers knows it is a process and the optimism can’t come without the caution.

“We have been bringing them along,” Myers said. “Every year we have been raising the bar. Over the last few years, we have been getting better kids in, but all the kids have just been stepping up. It’s a culmination of a couple of years of good kids coming back.”

The Knights brought back seniors Jacob Murphy and Adam Perolio and juniors Nick Strack and Riley Bubb. They also got junior Logan West as a transfer from Carroll. When senior John Wellman stepped in at goalkeeper to fill a big need, the pieces began to fit together.

“I am a little surprised we are 15-1-1, but when we started out the season I could see the ball rolling,” Myers said. “We just kept getting better and better. It’s been a good ride so far.”

The Knights won their first SAC title since 1995 and are the defending sectional champions. However, the Knights lost 5-0 to Canterbury in last year’s regional. Luers got some measure of revenge against the Cavs with a 4-1 win in August, but the postseason still runs through the defending champs.

“Winning the regional would be whetting our appetite,” Myers said of postseason goals. “We are not sure if Canterbury is going to get there, and I am not sure we are going to get there.

“Canterbury is one of the stellar programs in the area, and typically they are someone you have to go through. Just going farther this year is what we are focused on. We are not looking at any opponent as someone we have to take out, but we are ready for whatever comes our way.”

The Knights followed up the win over Canterbury with a 3-1 win over North Central two days later. The lone loss came Sept. 15 at the Sport Club against Guerin Catholic (14-0-2).

“We are trying to build our schedule up and get better teams in,” Myers said. “Sometimes a loss against a quality program helps set you straight on what you really need to work on.”

gjones@jg.net

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