Only a few weeks ago, the Boys Varsity Soccer team traveled to Windsor, Connecticut to finish what they had started at the beginning of the season: a long journey to the NEPSAC Championships.
After 75 minutes of grueling play in the near-freezing temperatures, the two-time NEPSAC champions Holderness School held Concord Academy to a close 2-2. An own goal from Holderness and a good effort from Jack Muldoon ‘20 kept Concord in the game, but they knew they needed to muster something more to pull them over the line. Following a corner kick from sophomore, Charlie Apolinsky ’22, Taha Kina ‘20 escaped his man and, heading the ball into the back of the net, found the spark to win the game and take home the title. It was one of the closest, hardest games they played all season, but they finished strong and came home with what they deserved: their first NEPSAC Championship in the program’s history.
Despite it being their first title, it was not their time at the tournament. The boy’s varsity team has gone to seven out of the last eight NEPSAC tournaments and earned placement in the competition in the last five consecutive seasons. Additionally, they won the EIL championship in 2017 and 2019. Now with the NEPSAC Championship in the cabinet, it is impossible to deny that the last few years have been the most successful in the program’s history.
Co-captain and Brown University soccer committed Taha Kina ’20 said “It’s the culmination of all the hard work we’ve put in these last four years. We’ve been close to achieving this goal in the past and to finally do it is really special. Winning this year was especially exciting because it’s my senior year and now we know we’ve left a lasting legacy on CA soccer. It was by far the best day of my soccer career and I’m so thankful to have been a part of such a historic season.”
The boys themselves do deserve much praise, but it would be amiss to disregard their dedicated and expert coach, Adam Simon. Adam has been the head coach at CA for over 25 years and, utilizing his experience and the strengths of his squad, steered the talented group of boys to the NEPSAC Championship. Although Adam believes the culture is just as important as the game itself, stating “We have a very strong team culture that is really consistent with the school’s values. We support each other — that’s the foundation for everything. And we’re kind. I’m always proud of our boys when they pick their opponents up off the grass, and they do it all the time. I like to think that those lessons translate beyond soccer.”
And as the season comes to its end, we look to our seniors and thank them for their crucial role in the program’s achievements. On behalf of the whole Concord Academy community, we wish you the best in all your future soccer endeavors. Go Green!