Gonzalez leads nine returners for CHS soccer
Goalkeeper is in questionCulver High School head coach Tim Kirk is searching for a goalkeeper; aside from that void, he's heading a group of skilled players.
Led by seniors Gerson Gonzalez and Miseal Morales, the Bulldogs are searching for a return trip to the playoffs, after missing post-season play last year.
"Gerson is an all-league player with amazing control as a striker," said Kirk of Gonzales, the team captain.
Gonzalez was named to the Special District 5 first team, and Miseal Morales was named to the second team.
"Miseal can play any position on the field with excellence," Kirk said of Morales. "No one works harder in practice."
Seniors Kyle Belanger and Garrett Knotek figure to give the Bulldogs playing experience, and junior Arturo Vazquez is the team's best defender.
"He can also find the back of the net with headers and one-touch finishes," Kirk said of Vasquez, who was named to the SD5 honorable mention team last year.
Culver finished 5-6-1 in Class 3A SD5 play last season, but Burns and Grant Union do not have soccer programs anymore, resulting in realignment of special districts around the state. Culver will now compete in Special District 4, along with 3A defending state champion Riverside, Umatilla, Irrigon and Central Christian.
"We don't have a ton of depth, but I think we can play with the top teams in our league," Kirk said.
The team will also use juniors Ryan Allen, Dustin Amunrud and Isaias Gutierrez.
"Isias is a strong and skillful player with great first touch and ball placement skills," Kirk said.
Sophomores Grayson Barry, Rebecca Reese, Eli Rumbargar and freshman Alejandro Terrazas will see time for the Bulldogs.
"Alejandro is quickly learning the pace and pressure of high school soccer," Kirk said. "We will work to become a team that represents our school and community with pride."
The Bulldogs begin nonconference play at 4 p.m. Sept. 4, a Ridgeview High School, and begin SD4 play Sept. 14 at Central Christian.