Editors Note: This is the first in a series of journal entries by Spartan junior men's soccer captain Evan Scheffey. Scheffey was an All-American last season from his defensive position as the Spartans finished the year ranked fifth in the country with a record of 21-0-3. His entries will be posted at various times during the summer and will begin to appear more frequently as the 2007 season approaches.
Evan Scheffey's Journal Entry #1 - June 19, 2007
After achieving the best season in York College Men’s Soccer history, there was a great deal to be proud of. A record of 21-0-3, numerous all-conference, all-region, all-American players, and even NCAA Coach-of-the-Year recognition for Coach Ludwig were all on the list of accomplishments. Reaching the NCAA Elite Eight was an accomplishment within itself, and said a great deal about how far we had come as a team. Yet, reaching the Elite Eight and getting all the accolades didn’t even compare to the feeling that we endured after losing in penalty kicks to Wheaton College. After being that close to our goal of getting to the NCAA Final Four in Florida and getting to play for a national championship, we were left with the most hopeless feeling as we watched Wheaton celebrate on our home field in front our tremendous fans. After all was said and done, we were proud of our historic season, but far from satisfied with the way that it ended. Once the lockers were cleaned out and all the player meetings had taken place, we all started to realize just how much work needed to be done in the next eight months in order to get to Orlando, FL, the home of the 2007 NCAA Division III Men’s Soccer Final Four.
Once everyone had returned from a nice month off for Christmas break, it was time to get back to training and playing. We began playing in an indoor league at the Lanco Fieldhouse. That got everyone playing once or twice a week. To compliment the on-field play, our assistant coach, Bill Esterly, designed a lifting workout that he had been constructing for many years. The soccer-specific workout concentrated on strengthening the core of the body while helping to make us more flexible in the process. As the phases of the program progressed, there were noticeable differences in the strength of the guys. This lifting program led us right into the spring season, which began in the last week of March.
The spring season began with a fitness test that went pretty well for the majority of the team. After the fitness test, we practiced four days a week for a month. The better part of the spring practices were spent playing small-sided games, usually 7-v-7. As the season progressed we had a few full-field scrimmages to get us ready for our spring play-day at Bucknell University. The spring-season was a great time for some players that hadn’t seen as much time during the regular season to emerge and make an impact. There were quite a few guys that had a great four weeks of spring ball. The spring season concluded at Bucknell, where we played four, 45 minute games. We beat East Stroudsburg University and Stevens College each 1-0, and then lost to Bucknell 1-0. We ended the day with a 2-1 win over Eastern University. Overall, the day went well and the team had a solid showing for having limited practice time. As the spring semester came to a close, so did another school year.
As summer was fast approaching, we did what we could to stay in shape while trying to stay on top on our schoolwork. We ended the year with personal player meetings and were given the expectations for the summer to come. Although it’s nice to look back and reflect upon our historic season, there is only one goal in the mind of every person on the team; Orlando, Florida and a 2007 National Championship.