Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

January 9, 2014

JHS Boys Soccer Preview: Indians appear to be in mid-season form

Jay Neal
Jacksonville Daily Progress



The Jacksonville High School boys soccer team ended its exhibition schedule Tuesday by breezing past Athens, 3-1.

Given the fact that the Tribe also defeated Chapel Hill, 3-1, and Whitehouse, 4-1, during the scrimmage season, it's safe to say that head coach Randy Hammontree's young men appear to be in mid-season form.

“So far the Indians are really looking good,” Hammontree said. “We played three scrimmages and won all three.

“The Athens scrimmage did scare me (because) it was 1-1 with eight minutes to go, but Alberto Escareno came through by putting two more goals in for us.”

A bevy of Tribesmen have performed well thus far and Hammontree took time out to recognize some of those achievers.

“Alex Sandoval, a sophomore, made the varsity team this year and has played well at forward and center mid, as have Jon Perez (junior) and Alan Lopez (sophomore).,” Hammontree said. “Joel Loua has played very well as a defender, along with Ruben Lara, Cruz Rocha and Luis Tavera.”

Other players that have stepped up early include Levi Santana at defensive center mid and senior Pedro Mireles.

“Pedro has improved a lot from last season and remains as our left-outside mid fielder,” Hammontree said. “He really does a good job for us there.”

The Indians are slated to open the regular season at 7:30 p.m. Monday at Tomato Bowl, with Lufkin providing the opposition.

Jacksonville will play in three tournaments (Longview, Palestine and Lufkin) this season and will host Hallsville in a non-district match at 7:30 p.m. on Jan. 20.

District gets under way on Feb. 7 when the Indians travel to Nacogdoches.

On Feb. 11, Jacksonville will play its first league match at home, versus the Diboll Lumberjacks.

Other teams in the circuit are Center, Lufkin Hudson and Palestine.

Assisting Hammontree and serving as head junior varsity coach this year will be Jay Brashear.

As for the Indians' goal this season; Hammontree said, without hesitation, “the plan is to win the district title.”