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Season ends for DCHS soccer teams
Kenna LeBaron defends during the game against Cherokee Bluff. She was an important vocal leader of the team throughout the season. - photo by Rio White

For the Dawson County High School boys and girls soccer teams, the past season saw individual and collective growth. The season came to its conclusion on Friday, April 1, when Dawson County traveled to play Cherokee Bluff in the regular season finale. 

Coming into Friday’s matches, the boys and girls teams carried season storylines that drew both similarities and contrasts.

While the boys team headed into the match with an opportunity to clinch the No. 4 seed in Region 7-AAA and a trip to the state playoffs, the girls team was looking for one last positive performance to end the season as they finished sixth in the region.

Despite the difference in position, the two teams shared a similar road to improvement from the previous season.

During the 2021 season, both teams struggled and had only three wins combined. But this season, strong leadership and team chemistry led to the boys team winning seven games and the girls team winning four.

Led by vocal leaders Kenna LeBaron and Erick Sanchez, the two sides found themselves in better shape at the end of the season and have a foundation to build upon for the future. 

While the girls team would fall to region champions Cherokee Bluff 10-0 and the boys team lost 5-0, both coaches reflected on the progress made during the season.

Erick Sanchez gets back into position during the game against Cherokee Bluff. He was one of the key leaders of the boys team this season. - photo by Rio White

“We had great senior leadership all year,” girls team head coach Chess Hamby said. “We were hoping to get in the playoffs but that didn’t happen. Overall, we improved in the final region standings, so we were happy with that.”

Hamby also mentioned that next year’s leaders would come from both experienced players and some of the younger players as well. With only three seniors leaving from this year’s squad, there will be plenty of room for improvement next season.

On the boys side, they will be losing six seniors from this year’s team but also have a rising crop of younger players who will be looking to expand their roles.

“We are losing six great seniors…these guys have done a tremendous job of setting the example of true leadership for the future,” boys team head coach Patrick Muenchen said. “I hope next year we will pick up where we left off and get better.”

Muenchen also said that he was proud of the team for not giving up against Cherokee Bluff and that he felt the team acted with class in the face of defeat.

Overall, the girls team finished the season with a 4-8-3 record with a 2-5 mark in region play, while the boys team finished 7-8-2 with a 3-4 record in the region.