Chapin faced a massive boys soccer rebuilding project in 2009, but the Eagles still enjoyed a highly successful season. Dick Hiller’s team finished with a 15-8-1 record, won the Region 4-3A championship and advanced to the third round of the Class 3A state playoffs before losing a 2-1 decision to top-ranked Eastside, which finished as the state runner-up to South Aiken.
“I’m proud of the way this group developed over the course of the season,” said Hiller. “We started out as a team that had lost 12 seniors from the state-runner up squad of 2008, and were very young and inexperienced in many positions. But we turned into a team that was right in the mix for a state championship again. This group won its third consecutive region and has not lost to a 3A team in the greater Columbia area in three years.”
The situation heading into 2010 will be the reverse. Chapin is losing only three seniors – starter Ben Bosco, back-up keeper Nick Lawson and reserve defender Carter Horton.
“We’ll return all but three players and if this group puts in the work it takes, they could be very good,” said Hiller.
The returning cast features 2009 all-region selections Joey DeMare, David Kesling, Colden King and Jason Vaeth.
DeMare, the 4-3A player of the year, led the team in scoring the second straight season. The rising senior forward rang up 28 goals, including six game winners, and 12 assists, good for 68 points. Kesling was the anchor on defense. King, a rising senior midfielder, had one goal and eight assists. Vaeth, a rising senior, posted six shutouts and a 1.39 GAA, in goal.
Bosco, a midfielder who scored six goals and had eight assists, was the Eagles’ other all-region pick.
Other returning players of note are forwards Dylan Matthiessen (5 goals-5 assists – 15 points) and Brandon Tibbs (7-3 - 17), midfielders Evan DeYoung (4-6 – 14), Connor Cunningham (16-6 – 38), Michael Ragsdale (5-0 – 10), Chris Ricketson (4-1 – 9), Alex Avinger (4-3 – 11) and Evan Stone (7-6 – 20) and defenders Louis Mariaca (2-5 – 9), Scotty Halbick (1-6 – 8) and J.D. Farrell.