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Rosemount boys soccer looking to build on success

The Rosemount boys soccer program took a step in the right direction last year, going 9-8-1 after winning just seven games over the previous two seasons.

And with 10 varsity contributors returning this fall — including three all-conference selections — the Irish are optimistic they can continue to build on that success this season.

"We all believe — the coaches and the players — that we can pick up where we left off and do better. The players are going into the season thinking they are going to win instead of coming in hoping not to lose," Rosemount coach Mike Floersch said. "The mind of an athlete can be an amazing thing and if you believe, then rewards will come. They are looking to leave a legacy after this season."

The Irish had 10 juniors on last year's varsity roster, so Floersch is expecting to have a senior-heavy team with plenty of depth this season. Leading the group are a pair of seniors who earned honorable mention all-conference honors for their efforts on the defensive end of the field last fall — Jacob Alex and Bennett Purfeerst. Alex could see time at a few positions, according to Floersch, while Purfeerst will continue to anchor the defense along with fellow senior Joe Fakhoury.

"(Alex) has speed, quickness, great leadership and works hard. He is a better player than he was last year and that is saying a lot and I am glad he plays for RHS, not our opponents," Floersch said. "(Purfeerst) is strong in the air, fast and tough to get around. We are expecting big things from him and Fakhoury as they anchor the back for us."

Other returning letter-winners for the Irish include Tanner Rons, who will start the season as the team's top option at goalkeeper, defenders Brandon Hubbard and Luke Conway and midfielders Andrew Smeed, Andrew Weiler and Erick Barrita.

Three of the team's top forwards from a season ago were lost to graduation, but the one returning can provide plenty of offense on his own. Kohl Sparrman is coming off a sophomore season where he earned first-team all-conference honors, scoring a team-high 16 goals.

"He is determined to be our all-time leading scorer since I have been keeping records for the last 18 years. I believe he can do it," Floersch said. "He is a hard worker, loves the game and wants the best for the team."

The Irish opened practice with try-outs on Monday. Floersch expects several players from last year's JV squad to make the jump to being varsity contributors.

"The program is starting to get stronger. More of our players are playing traveling soccer in the off-season which only means a stronger group at the high school," he said. "We have a very strong, large senior class, so we should have some of the most depth I have had in a very long time."

The Irish open the regular season next Thursday with a non-conference game against Farmington at Tiger Stadium.