A 6-0 win against Brooks and a 7-0 victory over Bridgton Academy added to Andover Boys Soccer’s total of 24 goals in seven games. Andover’s offense has been tough to stop with its 6-0-1 record.
This year’s offense is exceeding expectations. After graduating record-smashing star forward Dylan Mott ’15, this year’s offense was not expected to match last year’s achievements. It has, in fact, done just the opposite. Andover’s attack has been relentless.
“Last year with [Mott] leading the line, our attack could become one-dimensional at times as we always tried to get him the ball. The biggest improvement in our attack this year is that it is balanced. This year, the goals are coming from everyone, because everyone is involved in the attack,” said returner Peter Heckendorn ’17.
Co-Captain Brandon Girard ’16 said “This season, we can credit our goals as being a collective effort from multiple players. The forward line this year is comprised of new and old faces, but when teams play us, all they can see are four to five guys playing and connecting passes like they’ve known each other for years.”
Girard has led the offensive, scoring six goals and assisting four this season. Returner Henry Meyerrose ’17 has also been a fierce presence on attack, scoring three goals in four games.
“I think we are really dynamic and deep. We have a lot of guys who can play in the position and they all offer a different set of abilities. As a whole, we have good speed and play well with the ball at our feet. So far, we have been able to help the team get positive results,” said Meyerrose.
Newcomer Andrei Dumitrescu ’18 added, “We can wreak havoc on [opposing] defenders with a combination of deadly speed and agility. Off the field, [Girard] plays a big role as he supports us through thick and thin and motivates us without fail every time we need it.”
The center-forwards are credited largely for finishing the goal scoring opportunities, but Andover’s flank players have also put in work to get the ball to the forwards’ feet.
“Everyone notices the goals, but the real reason for our offensive success has been the things people don’t notice. Our strikers and wingers work tirelessly when we lose [the ball]. They pass selflessly and work for the good of the whole team,” said Heckendorn.
Andover’s offense also depends on the cohesion of the defense and the midfield. The team’s offensive success stems from team unity on the field.
The experience and leadership from Andover’s Seniors and Co-Captains, Peder Bakken ’16, Alex Dziadosz ’16 and Girard, have boosted the team’s morale on and off the field.
The spirit and drive that the upperclassmen bring to training each day has set the bar high and pushes each player to improve. Focus on shooting and offensive build-up in training has directly translated into Andover’s success in games. Andover defeated Loomis Chaffee 4-1, and claimed a 3-1 victory over Choate, both of whom are formidable opponents.
Taking one win at a time, Andover is steadily building momentum that it hopes will propel it into a successful post-season in November. The team will look to build on its offensive accomplishments and continue its undefeated streak in its game against Tilton this weekend.