Ames High boys’ soccer strives for sweet State success

When the clock ticks 3:05 and the bell rings, marking the end of another school day, Ames High’s soccer players begin just one more part of their day, one characterized by sweat, push-ups, and kicking lots of balls. Every day brings with it more challenges to meet, more stars to reach for. But for the boys’ soccer team, it’s worth it. This year they’re not just kicking up dirt; they’re kicking up the score, racking up wins, and most importantly, having fun! A trademark of Ames High boys’ soccer is the grueling practices that toughen up the team. During a typical soccer practice, the boys’ soccer team is subjected to many conditioning drills that specifically target the cardiovascular aspect of soccer. “We do lots of sprints,” junior Matt Laczniak said. “The sprints really help us late in the game when the other team is tired and we aren’t. Plus, they’re fun to do.” One would wonder why they stick with it through all the arduous practices given the fact that they might not even play come game time. But there are a variety of reasons why they go through all of the pain. “Soccer is great because it works your lower body, upper body, core, and self-confidence,” junior and JV Captain Jojo Fabiosa said. “It also gives you a sense of responsibility.” After losing a substantial number of last year’s starters, this year was expected to be a rebuilding season. “This season is going better than we thought it would,” junior goalie Markus Hippen said. “We’re actually having a good season, except for one game.” Although they suffered a disappointing loss to Waukee last weekend, the team has aimed high in true Ames High fashion with the goal of competing at the state soccer tournament later this spring. “We want to get to make it to [the State tournament],” senior and center defender Dan Kinker said. “Our season is going well, we’ve only lost one game, so I think we’ve got a good shot at making it.” Unfortunately for Ames High, their impressive record will not be taken into account when deciding sub-state games. The pairings for sub-state are chosen randomly, ensuring that every school has a chance to get to the state tournament. On May 2nd, Ames High boys’ soccer will be playing rival West Des Moines Valley here in Ames. The freshman game begins at 4:45, the JV game at 6:00, and the varsity game at 7:30.