September 20, 2006

Hampton Bays Boys' Soccer Preview Baymen Hope to Continue Success

Last year the Hampton Bays boys' varsity soccer team qualified for the playoffs only one season removed from a dreadful 0-17 campaign. This year, with one of the quickest and deepest teams in years, the Baymen are looking to book another postseason reservation and head coach John Paga has plenty of reasons to be optimistic.

"Even though we lost our entire starting defense and our leading goal scorer to graduation, we're looking for a lot of the same," Paga said. "It's going to be a tough league, but we hope to challenge. We graduated a lot of players, but as a whole, I really think this is a better team than a year ago."

Goalkeeper Pablo Anchia, a junior returnee has great hands and he'll be guarded by four new defensive starters this season in junior sweeper Kenny Chavez, senior stopper Chris Anchia and sophomore backs Juan Delgado and Mario Tzec. Both Chavez and Anchia will anchor the Hampton Bays defense that will be strongly challenged by league rivals such as Center Moriches, Mattituck and Babylon.

Midfield will see junior transfer Brandon Quinn, formerly of St. John the Baptist, bringing his speed and experience to the fold, while senior Anthony Arias starts at center/midfield. The Baymen's right wing halfback side has junior Stephen Vlahadamis and another junior, Marco Cortave, will play the left side.

Senior forward Pat Nydegger is an All-State track athlete that has blazing speed and he'll be looked to step up his offensive game this season along with junior forward Omar Zuniga.

Sophomore Hayron Cortave, junior Andres Garces and seniors Osvaldo Cuamtitla and Jonathan Patino add depth to the Baymen's midfield while Jose Ortega, a sophomore, and Felipe Rivas, a senior, fill out the fullback spots. Sophomore forward Juan Murillo gives Hampton Bays extra scoring punch off the bench.

"We're looking to qualify for the playoffs again," said Paga. "I see us as a middle of the pack team. We beat defending state champion Mattituck last season and also tied them during the season. We then lost a close game to Babylon in the playoffs. It was a great year and I think we can have another one."

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