In this week’s edition of the Friday Fast Break, we conclude our soccer previews with a pair of teams that are looking to make a lot of noise this fall. Both Oakville and Hillsboro return solid core groups that saw success last year.

Oakville head coach Brad Oestreich will count on 13 returning players from 2021 to help lead the Tigers to a conference crown. Issac Lillard was Oakville’s leading scorer last season with eight goals while handing out nine assists as he returns to the Tiger lineup.

Hillsboro head coach Sam Nansel welcomes the Hawks leading scorer back from last season and will also turn to a veteran goalkeeper to help the Hawks in competing for the JCAA title. Nick Marchetti had a team-high 16 goals and was tops on the team with 12 assists last year while Gabe Perry will be between the pipes to aid Hillsboro this fall.

Oakville Tigers

  • Head Coach – Brad Oestreich
  • Record at school – 24-31-1 in three years
  • Conference – Suburban Red
  • 2021 record – 13-8-1
  • Returners: Mohammed Al-Kenani, Will Beach, Parker Flens, Seth Gallagher, Isaac Lillard, Emir Mustajbegovic, Zach Pommer, Joey Effinger, Will Hanak, Sam Lurkins, Parker Medina, Adin Sijecic, and Blake Woldanski.
  • Top Returning Players: Isaac Lillard, Sam Lurkins, Will Hanak.
  • Players to Watch: Parker Medina and Mohammed Al-Kenani.
  • Season Outlook: “We have a large group returning with at least one year of varsity soccer experience and some new faces that will be coming up the ranks that we are excited to see contribute,” stated Oestreich. “In the end, we want to be at the top of the Suburban Conference Red Pool and make a strong push for that district title.”

Key Games:

  • Tuesday, August 30 vs Howell
  • Thursday, September 1 at Summit
  • Tuesday, October 18 at Vianney

Hillsboro Hawks

  • Head Coach – Sam Nansel
  • Record at school – 17-27-2 in two years
  • Conference – Jefferson County Athletic Association
  • 2021 record – 11-13-2
  • Returning players: Christian Groner, Carson Leonard, Nick Marchetti, and Elliott Puhse. We also return a strong goalkeeper, Gabe Perry.
  • Players to Watch: Nick Marchetti was their leading goal scorer last year with 16 goals and 12
  • assists as a sophomore. He returns as a junior, and I look for him to produce even more than last year. Christian Groner is the anchor of our defense and has worked hard in the offseason to improve his game mentally. Carson Leonard is the glue that holds our midfield together and is a great two-way player. Elliott Puhse had seven goals last year and has the potential to double or triple that total this year.
  • Season Outlook: “We always play a solid schedule and have added some new games this season,” stated Nansel. “Last year we finished right below .500 and lost in the district semifinal. I’d like to see us finish above .500 this season and make it to the district final. There are always particular games you look forward to during the season…but I’m particularly excited about our first year in the Windsor tournament and trying to get the Highway 21 Cup back from Desoto.”

Key Games:

  • Tuesday, August 30 vs Bayless at Windsor
  • Tuesday, September 13 vs De Soto
  • Tuesday, October 18 vs Festus

Jim Powers
Jim Powers

Jim Powers has been covering prep sports in the St. Louis area for 15+ years and a part of the Missouri State High School Activities Association Championship Broadcasts for the past 11 years. Powers is also a part of the Fox 2 Verlo Mattress Prep Zone Friday nights at 10:10 during the football and basketball seasons. If you have a prep sports story, please contact Jim at japowers2421@yahoo.com. Follow Jim at @hssportscaravan