A Season to Remember

The Fall 2022 Boys Soccer Team

Left to Right: Xave Crane, Owen Verzella, Ben Tortora, Dyan Hutton, & Kyle Sullivan.

Kayla Bolling

Left to Right: Xave Crane, Owen Verzella, Ben Tortora, Dyan Hutton, & Kyle Sullivan.

After multiple years of practice and trials, the South Windsor Boys Soccer Seniors played for the last time in their high school career on Saturday, November 12th.

On September 8th, the South Windsor Bobcats faced Edwin O. Smith, and stepped off the field with a 5-0 win. The first game of the season set the tone for the rest. The Bobcats left the season with over 8 shut-outs, adding on three more wins for a 11-2-2 record.

For the first time since 2018, the Bobcats won the CCC East Conference. Not only did they carry the wins, they carried as one of the top ten teams in the state for more than half of the season. After winning the first round and second round, the boys made it to the Quarterfinals in the state Double L league.

On November 12th, the boys set out for a nearly two hour ride from South Windsor to Norwalk. Preparing for the game, Captain Kyle Sullivan walked through the school halls with his headphones on and game face ready. When asked if he was nervous for the game, Sullivan’s face lit in confusion, “Nervous? Why would I be nervous?”

After hopping off the bus, the Bobcats were faced with the Norwalk Bears, a team of over 30 players. Stepping in with high hopes, the boys attempted, but left the field shut out by the fourth team in the state.

The Bobcats lineup consisted of 12 seniors. All together the 12 seniors scored 30 goals, with over half the players having a 3.5 GPA or higher, the boys were smart on and off the field. Taking pride in their play and their future, the Bobcats were full of 12 well rounded seniors.  

Wearing number one was Kyle Sullivan. Sullivan is a Division one commit to Merrimack College. Sullivan has been playing for over 10 years, he has played the goalie position for 9 years. This season Sullivan had over 50 saves. Plans on following his soccer career at Merrimack where he will study Exercise Science. 

Hanging up jersey number four, Owen Verzella has been playing soccer since he was three. Verzella was chosen as an all conference player, and was chosen to play in the annual CSCA Senior Bowl along with Sullivan. Check out his Student Spotlight here. 

“Kyle Sullivan and Owen Verzella were first year captains who pushed the boys all Fall and expected their best on the field.” Said their coach, Peter Lepak. Lepak has been coaching multiple sports for many years for the South Windsor community.

The last captain, Xavier Crane leaves behind his three years on varsity. Crane is a well rounded student, maintaining a 3.5 or higher GPA, every season he has played for the Bobcats. Crane amongst others was a standout player, Coach Lepak writes, “Xavier Crane was a 2 year captain and kept the boys in check with positivity and a great work ethic.”

Crane wrote that he wouldn’t ever forget getting pulled up to varsity for the first time in his freshman year, “I was so proud to be selected and excited to experience a playoff run for the first time.” Xavier Crane is a hard worker on and off the field. His first goal this season and in his career was at the Bobcats last regular season game, he marked the feeling as “incredible.” Crane hopes to attend  Villanova- and study Finance. 

Although the soccer season is over, some of the boys go on to play more sports for the school, and some focus on their careers, or working after school. Each player took the time out of their year to set up for this season, and prepare, and they showed out. 

Lepak told the prowl his final thoughts for his 2022 seniors, “It’s so hard to say goodbye to a group like this, but they set up a great pathway for the future Bobcat Soccer players and set the tone for high expectations for the future of our program.”