The 2022 high school soccer season is underway with the first preseason tournaments in the state. With almost a hundred teams participating in one of the biggest, Bluegrass State Games, in Lexington at Masterson Station Park. Some of these teams include our local teams: Somerset, Somerset Christian, Southwestern, Wayne County, & lastly Pulaski County.
Any preseason event can give the coach lots of things to think about seeing their team perform against another side for the first time.
The Pulaski County boys soccer team will be the highlight of today’s discussion, who are coming off a 7-5-3 season- including a district runner-up & first round region tournament exit. Going into the season, PC has a new coach at the helm. Englishman James Rixon takes over as the head coach of Pulaski County boys soccer. Rixon, coaching Kentucky ‘Rush’ teams around the area, already has a familiarity of the soccer scene in south central Kentucky and with his players.
Coming off a disappointing 2021 season, the Maroons are hungry to finally get some hardware. This past weekend was the first step to that.
Pulaski County opened up Bluegrass State Games with a 2-1 victory over Holy Cross (Covington). In the first half, Sophomore Tyson Absher found himself on a breakaway after a long ball up from the defense, and after he blew by the opposing goalkeeper, Absher comfortably placed the ball into the back of the net. Later on into the game, now in the second half, Beau Cherry received the ball, turned onto his left foot and striked it from 25 yards out into the bottom left corner. PC would go on to possess the ball well to give them the win.
Carroll County was next up on the docket for the Maroons. Things got started quickly as Sophomore Julio Morales scored on the left side, slotting the ball by the keeper. More goals would come quite easily for ‘County High, as Walker Higgins (another sophomore) would find himself in the right place at the right time where he would score a tap-in off a beautifully placed cross. That wouldn’t be the end for PC, or the graduating class of 2025, as Absher, the striker, scored 3 times this game, kicking the ball into every part of the net.
Pulaski County defeated Carroll County 7 to 1, the last two goals coming from Cherry. Both were clinical strikes from the lefty Cherry, each placed in the far corners unreachable for any opposing keeper.
Cherry would credit his teammates for his impressive performance, “I thought the team played really well & we had some great moments. I played well because of the plays set up by teammates around me.” Always great to see things clicking for a team early on, especially underclassmen.
Cherry would score once more in the 3rd & final game of the weekend, in a tough 3-1 loss against Beechwood. A free kick from Senior Sawyer Gambill would find the head of Cherry as the only score of the match. However, boasting a 2-1 record in BSG isn’t anything to be down on. The Maroons move forward, with the regular season starting August 9th.
What’s next for PC soccer? They will travel to Shelbyville on Saturday, Aug. 6, to compete in the Martha Layne Collins Soccerama. They’re scheduled to scrimmage the defending 6th region champions Louisville Butler.
Follow @PchsBoys on Twitter to stay updated all season long.