The boys’ soccer team worked hard throughout the season.
Thomas Jefferson High School’s boys’ soccer had a great 2019 season with a 6-8-1 record and a league record of 4-5-1. The team was coached by John Thompson Sr. and John Thompson Jr.. Thompson Sr. has been coaching soccer for 12 years, including six of those years at TJ and head coaching at TJ for two years. “It was extremely competitive growing up playing soccer in Colorado. Soccer was my life growing up, playing year round at the highest level. I actually started coaching when I was 16, while I was still playing. Soccer is everything to me,” Thompson Sr. explained. With the experience that Thompson Sr. has, he was able to inspire the success that the boys had this season and push them to work together as a team.
The two varsity captains, junior Ryan Moe and senior Zach Stuart, led the team full of great players and hard workers to six victories. Moe mentioned, “Our strength as a team this year was that our team was close-knit and everyone enjoyed being part of this team.” The boys worked hard every day at practice and did their best while trying to make it to the playoffs, but sadly they came up short by a couple of rankings. Thompson Sr. stated, “We were in a developmental period this year. The TJ program has lots of potential and is very young. Watch out for this team next year!” Since the soccer team had ten graduating seniors last year, there was a lot of movement and change to their varsity team. This made the teamwork hard to build their playing chemistry and learn how each player played. The team struggled with their belief; if the team believed in themselves during the game, they played great and kept kicking. However, once that one concept left the game, they started to play as individuals and not as a team. When trust was embedded in the game, the program excelled.
The boys’ team this year had nine graduating seniors and the rest of their 21 person team was made up of juniors, sophomores, or freshmen. This heavy amount of younger players made the nine seniors leaders for the players who look up to them and hope to be in their position in the coming years. “I looked forward to playing with a lot of the underclassmen and seeing how they end up being as players,” Moe described.
Last season, the boys had the best season in TJ history. They made it to the second round of playoffs and were ultimately beaten by Kennedy 2-1. The great season was due to the incredible teamwork and dedication on and off the field. This year’s team worked very hard and tried their best but didn’t make it as far as they had hoped. Despite this, they still had a very successful season that helped them grow as a team.