Halfway through the season, PRC boys’ soccer team prepare for a strong finish

Published 7:00 am Friday, December 8, 2017

The Pearl River Central boys’ soccer team is currently on one of its best season starts in recent years. Midway through the season, the team holds a 6-4-1 record, improving from last year’s 4-7-2 overall record.

In its first four games this season, PRC only won one game and tied two. Afterwards, the team won its next five games before falling to district rival Hattiesburg 2-1 Tuesday night.

“Heading into the matchup against Hattiesburg, we were feeling confident, maybe even too confident,” Blue Devils Head soccer Coach Joe Weems said. “We pressed the whole game, we controlled possession, but we just couldn’t find a way to put the ball in the net.”

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Weems attributed the reason for this year’s early success to the 11 seniors on the squad. He said most of them have been playing together since the eighth grade.

Blaze Giovengo, Jeffery Shaw, Doc Herrin, Will Rogers, Kyle Van Marcke, Logan Devore, Hayden Dodd, Caleb Spence, Shawn Trahan, Brock Revels and Jarrett Dunhurst are the seniors on this year’s team.

“During my 16 years that I have been here, this is one of the strongest teams I have ever had,” Weems said. “Some of our strengths include playing smart, spreading out on the field, having possession of the ball the majority of the game and having a fast counter-attack.”

The Blue Devils have one major goal to achieve by season’s end.

“Our main motivation this season is to win district,” team captain Trahan said. “No PRC boys soccer team has won district in recent years and we want to be the first one.”

This year, Weems has also taken over the girls program and assistant coach John Trahan has played a significant role in the team’s success.

“He’s really important to us and he’s respected by our players, he’s a pivotal part of our success,” Weems said.

The Blue Devils will host district rival North Pike Friday and will then travel to Picayune Memorial High School to take on the Maroon Tide on Dec. 15.

“There’s a lot of excitement around our program this year and I hope we can continue the success we have had so far,” Weems said. “Our next two matches will be tough but if we play the way we know we can, we can come out with positive results.”