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Boys soccer: Heads still high after section loss

Every team but the state champion ends the season with a loss, but some of those teams come away from that loss feeling better about their season than others.

That was likely the case for the Rosemount boys soccer team. The Irish's season came to an end with a 2-0 loss to fourth-ranked (Class 2A) Apple Valley last Thursday night. Making the loss easier to take was a 2-1 upset of third-seeded Henry Sibley two days earlier, which gave the Irish a six-win improvement from the previous year and their first above-.500 season since 2007.

"This is really encouraging because we are such a young squad this year and the players are excited for what next year brings," Rosemount coach Mike Floersch said. "We ended the season above .500 (9-8-1) which was our goal. Next year I believe we can go even further."

The Irish had to rally for their first section win in five years as Henry Sibley held a 1-0 advantage with 20 minutes to go. That's when Brandon Hubbard tied the game with a goal on a pass from Andrew Smeed. With under five minutes to go, a Henry-Sibley handball in the box set up a go-ahead penalty kick by Kohl Sparrman.

"It was really exciting to see the boys come back again," Floersch said.

The Irish had no comeback in them against Apple Valley. The loss ended the careers of five seniors: Biruk Tefera, Luke Thompson, Thomas Osborn, Garrett Groth and Trevor Reis.

"Our boys played really hard and never quit. The boys walked away from the game with no regrets because we left it all out on the field with nothing left to give," Floersch said. "Our MVP for the game was Trevor Reis, but it could have just as easily have been all of our seniors.... They were such good role models for the younger players in how hard they played and their leadership."