Mar. 31—Glynn Academy's boys soccer team had to replace eight starters this season after losing so many seniors last year. With the regular season coming to an end, the Terrors seem to have found some rhythm going into the final matchup before the playoffs against Brunswick High on Thursday.
While their 12-1-1 overall and 9-1 region record doesn't necessarily say struggles, coach Bobby Brockman said it wasn't pretty at the beginning of the season implementing so many new starters.
"We got some results early, but it wasn't the way Glynn Academy soccer would typically look," Brockman said. "A lot of that was because we were as young as we were, and we got robbed of half the season last year. I only had three guys coming back that were consistent starters. So we had to bring eight guys into the starting lineup, and that's always a bit of a challenge."
However, they did have three players in Simon Van Boxel, Phillip Bulatao and Bennett Colbert, who were the three returning starters to help them along the way.
Van Boxel and Bulatao are two forwards, while Colbert is the goalkeeper. All three have been pivotal in the Terror's success as Van Boxel and Bulatao are big offensive weapons, and Colbert hasn't given up over 12 goals all season.
"They each have their own style," Brockman said. "Phillip is a leader by his incredible work ethic, Simon's a leader by scoring goals, and Bennett's a leader by preventing goals and communicating in the back with the defense."
Each of them has a role on the field, and Brockman said in his opinions those positions are the two most on the field in high school soccer as you have to score goals to win, and the goalkeeper can either win or lose team's games.
Van Boxel is one of the leading scorers and a force for the Terrors. Brockman said there are a couple of things that make him who he is.
"He's really fast, and he's quick. He has the ability to get in behind another team's defense," Brockman said. "He also has the ability to break players down one on one when we find its feet, and he can run it players. Those are his two biggest strengths, speed getting in behind and his one on one ability."
He's been able to help the Terrors win some of these games while also helping the younger guys get adjusted to playing this level of soccer play.
However, there have been guys like Jonathan Sasser who have also found success offensively for the Terrors. There is also Nathan Copstias, Harrison Lee, Caleb Faulk, Thomas Mitchell and Luke O'Connor who have been consistent for Glynn, whether it's providing assists or scoring goals themselves.
With COVID-19 shutting down the season halfway through last year, these younger players didn't get as much experience as Brockman would have liked before handing over the reins this year.
"I think overall, it's a pretty significant jump in the intensity from some club games to some high school games, and learning what the standard is as far as how hard we are going to compete for every game," Brockman said. "The young guys we've had, there's a difference when a 15-year-old is playing an 18-year-old. Our young guys had to adjust to the speed of play, as well as the overall strength and size of these older guys."
Those three have helped the youngsters along this season, and even though Brockman said they weren't always playing Glynn Academy soccer like it has been known for, as a whole unit, they still found success.
Glynn Academy took on Richmond Hill Tuesday night, but the game was in progress at the time of press. Regardless, the Terrors will host a first-round playoff game.
The Terrors are currently No. 1 in the region rankings and are looking to play for either the one or two seat through the final two games this week. It'll all come down to Thursday's matchup against their rivals' Brunswick High at Glynn County Stadium.