Warriors mesh many styles to form team
By By Tony Krausz/assistant sports editor
August 23, 2003
DECATUR If the United Nations ever formed a soccer team, it would probably look a lot like the East Central Community College roster.
The Warriors embark on the 2003 season with a number of new players with a wide variety of backgrounds.
"We have players that play Liberian style, Mexican style, Chile style and the kids from the area," said ECCC head coach Kenneth Thompson. "It was a little work getting them all to play the same style, but it has come together pretty well."
The Warriors lost nine starters from last season's 9-6-3 squad, and the team only returns four players from last year's team.
ECCC's large roster turnover has been a smooth transition, as the Warriors' melting pot of a soccer team has jelled quickly on the pitch.
The team started practicing on Aug. 11, and after everyone got used to each other's styles, the Warriors became like a big, happy family.
"They have come together real quick," Thompson said. "If you see one of them, you see all of them walking around together. They have a lot of team camaraderie."
The squad had a good model on the field to construct its version of a family.
ECCC has a set of three brothers on the team in John, Beau and Joe Theobold, John and Beau are twins.
John will move from the forward position, where he notched eight goals and two assists last year, to the midfield. Beau will play forward, and Joe will split time in the midfield and on the defense, mainly at stopper.
"I doubt very seriously there has ever been many teams that has had three brothers in community college on the same team ," Thompson said. "They are all real good players."
Along with formulating a new bond on the field, ECCC had to search for a new offensive catalyst.
The Warriors lost their top goal scorer, Seltue Karweaye, to graduation. Karweaye tallied 17 goals and recorded six assists last season to rank him the top offensive player in the South Division and No. 3 in the state.
Thompson said he will look for John Theobold, who is coming off a freshman campaign in which he tallied eight goals and two assists, to pick up the offensive slack.
"John actually had a better freshman year than (Karweaye) had his freshman year," Thompson said. "I'm hoping (John Theobold) comes on a does well."
On the defensive end of the field, ECCC has two strong goaltenders.
Brent Clark will be the team's opening game starting keeper, and Ragan Denham will also see time in the net.
ECCC begins its season against Mississippi Delta Community College at 1 p.m. today on the road.