The Minnewaska Area boys’ soccer team is set to open up action at 11 a.m., Saturday, Aug. 27 at home against Heritage Christian.  The team has eight home matches and six matches on the road during the regular-season before opening up the playoffs Oct. 11.

The Lakers are coming off a 9-6 season from a year ago when the team placed second in the conference with a 7-2 record.

Back to lead the team is head coach Ted Hill, who has been coaching the Lakers for 26 years and was named the State Class A Coach of the Year in 2021.  Hill, who has also earned eight Section “Coach of the Year” honors, will be assisted by David Vinje, Tony Feigum, Manford Foster and Jarrid Jergenson.

“Like every fall coach, I am happy to get a season going,” coach Hill said.  “The uncertainly of the summer has led to less offseason training by the players.  As a result, we are trying to fit a lot into our preseason.  We lost eight players to graduation, who all had an impact on our 2021 season.  Our young players are going to have to mature quickly if we are going to be successful this season.

“The big question in our program will be who will move into the goal.  We were spoiled by having a very good keeper last season in Hunter Kloos.  So far, we haven’t had a keeper emerge.  We will also have to stay away from injuries, as our participation numbers are down this season.”

Named to the Granite Ridge Conference 1st team last year were Ethan Quelle, Ike Koenig and Konner Hanson, while earning placement on the second team were Aaron Feigum, Damon Uhde and Tate Reichmann.

In addition, Quelle earned All-State 1st team honors and Koenig and Hanson earned All-State 2nd team recognition.

Quelle led the Lakers with 25 goals and eight assists last year, while Koenig had four goals and six assists, Hanson added one assist while playing defense, Uhde had 10 goals and four assists, Reichmann had three goals and four assists, and Feigum added one goal and five assists.

•  The Lakers scored 52 goals last year while giving up 27.  Minnewaska Area went 8-5 through the regular season before opening up the Section 8A Tourney with a 3-2 win over Prinsburg CMCS and losing by a 4-2 shootout to St. Cloud Cathedral in the next round after both teams ended regulation in a 1-1 tie.