Boys Soccer Finishes 2018 Ranked #5 in North Carolina

Freddy Stanley, Editor in Chief

Boys Soccer finished their 2018 campaign at 14-7, capping on a fantastic season at Barringer Field.

The Falcons started off the season exceptionally well, racing out to 4-0 start. This record was impressive enough to bring them to #10 in the Max Preps National Poll, and a rank of #2 in the state. The boy soccer team also picked up some hardware at the beginning of the season, taking home the Bull City Cup after wins against North Carolina School of Science and Math, Durham School of the Arts, and Riverside High School. The boys finished out conference play at 7-2, picking up a few more impressive wins against the likes of Apex Friendship, Leesville Road, and East Chapel Hill.

The boys hit a little bit of a road bump with the start of conference play, going 1-3 in their first four games with two of the losses occurring in overtime. Although it seemed like the season spiraling out of control, Coach Ferguson and the boys were able to get back on track, winning 5 out of their last 6 conference games. The regular season was capped off with an impressive win on Senior Night, over conference champions, and eventual state champions, Green Hope High School.

Entering the playoffs, spirits were high within the squad. After knocking off the #1 team on the state, talks of a potential state championship run were echoing throughout the school. Due to their overall record and strength of schedule, the Falcons were awarded home field advantage for the first round of the playoffs. The Falcons made easy work of visiting Page High School from Greensboro in the pouring rain, winning the game 2-0 to advance to the second round.

Brimming with confidence, the Falcons made the trip to Winston-Salem to face R.J Reynolds for the second round. In heavy fog, the Falcons went down 1-0 early in the game, struggling to move the ball around the smaller sized field. Fighting through the taunts and jeers from the R.J. Reynolds fans, the Falcons were able to snatch an equalizer late in the second half, forcing an overtime period. Unfortunately for the Falcons, it was not their day. R.J. Reynolds were able to slot home the go ahead goal in which the Falcons were unable to respond, effectively ending the season filled with so much hope and promise.

The 2018 Jordan High School Soccer season was a story of both great success, and overcoming adversity. For starters, junior winger Nathanael Agurcia left the team half way through the season to join the North Carolina FC Youth Academy. Agurcia was one of the Falcons leading scorers, and one of the most creative minded budding star of the offensive line. With the loss of Agurcia, the Falcons were forced to readjust their offensive tactics, putting more of a burden on All-State senior forward, Alex Wigger, to score goals and be the offensive workhouse. With the loss of Agurica, Wigger rose the the challenge, scoring 14 goals on the season. Wigger’s offensive accomplishments were enough to earn himself All-Conference and All-State honors.

Another time in which the Falcons were called upon to come together as a team to overcome adversity was following their first round playoff win against Page High School. Following the win, allegations arose concerning the verbal harassment of a the Page High School player from the Jordan High School student section.  The allegations were made public with the publication of local news stories concerning the alleged comments. Page High School supporters also took to social media in attempts to publicize the allegations. Due to the attention generated surrounding the event, Jordan High School was forced to launch an internal investigation in an attempt to find the validity of the accusations of the Page players and supporters.  The school interviewed as many witnesses to the event as they could, including people with and without affiliations to the school, and concluded that there was no evidence of any verbal abuse of Page players. Although the schools investigation concluded that there was no wrongdoing, the Jordan High School soccer players still felt the effect the the negativity that was being thrown at their program by the local news, and the Page supporters themselves. Traveling to Winston-Salem for the second round, it was unknown what kind of reception that Jordan players would receive, but the players were forced to put everything else aside and focus on what was truly important. The game itself.

Although rumors and allegations surrounding the program put a could over the season, the Falcons still had a lot to celebrate once it was all said and done. For starters,the Falcons were able to call themselves champions of Durham after winning the Bull City Cup. On Senior Night, the Jordan High School Falcons were able to knock of the Green Hope Falcons, a team that finished the season ranked #2 in the Nation. Awards wise, seniors Alex Wigger, Ethan Nuemann, and Sam Loyack were given All Conference honors, with seniors Alex High and Jeffery Donis given All-Conference honorable mention.

Departing the Falcons will be a senior class that added so much to such a great team. Twelve seniors will be leaving the Falcons next year, including the leadership of captains Jeffery Donis, Alex High, and Ethan Neumann. For their 2019 campaign, the Falcons will need to find replacements on the front line for their leading goalscorer, Alex Wigger, as well as for stricker Dixon (El Tanque) Acosta. The trio of immensely talented and experienced midfield players Alex High, Jeffery Donis, and Sam Loyack will also leave a huge hole to be filled. The Falcons will be losing their captain at the back, Ethan Neumann, as well as his center back partner Kellen Moushon and wing backs Jonathan Contreras, Kai Sherwood, and Jack Shine. The Falcons bench will also take a hit, with midfielder Cam Harris and goalkeeper Kerwin Donis seeing their careers under the light of Barringer come to a close as well.

For the 2019 season, the Falcons will see the return of only three starters to the lineup. Goalkeeper Freddy Stanley will lead the Falcons in his fourth and final season in net for the Falcons. Attacking tandem Nathan Tucker and Aidan Clark will also be returning from last years starting line up for their junior seasons. The Falcons will see an all new back four to start off the 2019 season, lead by returning rising seniors Preston Johnson and Harrison Land. Rising seniors Joey Stanley and Seddie Wibbles will be faced with the challenge of filling the shoes of the graduating midfielders from last season. Up top, forwards Sean Michaels an Dylan Bristow will be asked to step up into contributing roles as they enter their senior season.

The Falcons will start out the 2019 season at Wake Med Soccer Park against Ashley High School on August 24th.