WARREN/GROSSE POINTE — East Detroit and Roseville high’s boys soccer teams went through some transition this season.
The Shamrocks and Panthers brought in new coaches — Chris Lohrmann at East Detroit and Rick Meyer at Roseville — who took over inexperienced rosters. That lack of playing experience was brought on by the Panthers graduating 13 players from their 2012 squad, and both rosters featured players who had never played the sport before.
The teams struggled this season, but each coach is proud of how his team battled over the course of a tough campaign.
East Detroit (0-12-0) and Roseville (2-13-1) both saw their seasons come to an end in the 2013 Michigan High School Athletic Association Division 1 district quarterfinals. The Panthers fell 7-0 to Grosse Pointe North Oct. 14 at North. The Shamrocks were bested 8-0 by Warren Cousino Oct. 14 at Cousino.
“After the match, I just told the boys to keep their heads up because they battled and fought all year long,” said Lohrmann, who took over the East Detroit team just two weeks before the start of the 2013 regular season.
“I thought they handled everything really well and showed great attitudes, and they made improvements as the season went along. We had some rough losses early on, but once we got around to playing some teams for a second time, you could see us getting better.”
Meyer early in the season said he was happy to see his team develop camaraderie and continuity on the field. He said learning to play together was key for the Panthers.
Both East Detroit’s and Roseville’s rosters are filled with underclassmen who should return next season. Of the 16 players on the Panthers’ roster, only two are seniors — forward Mark Koliba and midfielder Zack Thompson. East Detroit has just two seniors, Brian Finn and James Hall, on its 15-man roster. In their playoff match against Cousino, the Shamrocks’ playoff roster featured nine freshmen and two sophomores.
“I’m looking forward to next year,” Lohrmann said. “A lot of the kids actually picked things up pretty quickly, and they should be that much better after having a year of varsity under their belts.”