Every year, it’s good to get back together with the guys and play a game of soccer for old times’ sake.
That’s how nearly two dozen Augusta soccer alumni felt Thursday, anyway.
Of course, every year, they’re reminded of something else, too.
“We realized we’re not 16 again,” said 2002 alum Jacob Herrman.
That was easy to tell beforehand when current assistant coach Kyler Rowland had to yell out to the alumni to make sure they stretch before playing. A lot.
Actually, the alumni soccer players quickly got ahead of the current Augusta Orioles soccer players, but the young guys were too much for the alumni to keep up with. Ryan?Albright scored both goals for a 2-1 win as the Orioles outlasted the alumni.
Still, it was worth it.
“It’s a lot of fun,” Jesse Welsh said about being with former Augusta soccer players. “Lot of memories.”
Other former players who came out were Stephan Williams (‘05), Jacob Resa?(‘06), Chris Haas, Garrett Frawley, Kolt Schnake and Cody Turnquist who all graduated in 2009, and even some long-timers like Justin?Mitchell (‘96), Jason Goeken (‘93)
Welsh and fellow 2007 classmate Carter Stevenson both went on to play soccer in college. Stevenson finished playing at Coffeyville, will finish getting his Associate’s degree at Butler, then play soccer at Newman University next year.
Since there were enough alumni players, they split up into two teams and played each other afterwards. But by this time, it was evident which of them were still in playing condition and which, well, tuckered out a little at the end. A lot of the alumni joked about not playing soccer since anywhere from six months to two years.
Sure, there were moments when they made the current Orioles look bad, but those Orioles got the last laugh.
Sort of. After all, the Orioles were exhausted after playing for nearly two hours.
During the intrasquad scrimmage, the Orioles played two 15-minute periods. There were times when cross passes and clearout kicks were off-target, but the game wasn’t all that sloppy, at least for a scrimmage game.
Albright had one shot sail just high enough to bounce off the top crossbar and bounce back into play, but he later scored the game’s first goal.
Logan Hiser scored on a pass from AJ?Willett to tie the game 1-1 near the end of the first half.