Thursday, December 10, 2009

Preps: Captain's leadership keying Warriors' success

Steinbrenner High boys coach Chad Ebright is crediting his side’s captains for the strong start the Warriors have made to their inaugural season.

The Warriors lost their first game of the season on Tuesday night to Alonso, but rebounded with a 2-0 victory through goals by Austin Renz and Oliver Ortiz against fellow new school Strawberry Crest on Wednesday to move to 7-1-0. The Warriors are also 6-0-0 in district play so far, giving them an excellent chance of a high seed in the Class 4A-District 9 tournament.

“We have five juniors of our roster of 24,” Ebright said, “but my captains are incredible. They are incredible to coach. They want to learn, and they want the team to be successful, so it’s been a nice situation to come into.”

Juniors Phillip Jorge and Tony Melatti and sophomore Renz are the Warriors’ captains, but the Warriors' attack has been very balanced, with seven players having scored multiple goals. Ortiz leads the side with seven goals, with Jorge having added six and four assists.

The Warriors face their toughest district tests either side of the holiday break, with a game against Robinson on Wednesday, and then a game against Jesuit on Jan. 8 to close out their district schedule. Ebright said that his side is looking forward to facing the Tigers.

“The boys are all real excited to play Jesuit,” Ebright said. “We all know how successful (Jesuit coach) Bob (Bauman’s) been over there, and that team, so the boys were excited to hear that they were in our district and it’s a good measuring stick. We’ve had some success early, but the season is much longer than just those first seven games.”

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