MaxPreps Colorado Boys Soccer Players of the Year
Offensive Player of the Year: Robbie Derschang, Cherry Creek, Sr.
The Bruins midfielder edged Lincoln midfielder Oscar Montoya in a close vote by the state’s coaches. Derschang was the fourth-leading scorer in Class 5A with 20 goals (he also tallied five assists) to lead the Bruins to the Centennial League title and the No. 1 seed in the state tournament. Cherry Creek advanced to the quarterfinals before suffering a 1-0 loss to Rocky Mountain. Derschang scored at least two goals in seven of Cherry Creek’s 18 games, with his best game coming against Mullen with three goals. Derschang also was chosen the classification’s player of the year by the Colorado High School Soccer Coaches Association and was a National Soccer Coaches Association of America All-Region nominee.
Honorable mention: Tesho Akindele, Northglenn, Sr.; Salman Bahurmoz, Bear Creek, Sr.; Davey Armstrong, Rangeview, Sr.; Zach Bolden, Denver East, Sr.; Christian Caruso, Mountain Range, Sr.; Zach Davis, Pine Creek, Sr.; Oscar Montes, Bear Creek, Fr.; Oscar Montoya, Lincoln, Sr.; Zac Portillos-Grant, Grandview, Sr.; Jon Sawyer, Eaglecrest, Jr.; Spencer Sarson, Boulder, Sr.; Travis Sytsma, Heritage, Sr.; Adam Tormoehlen, Arapahoe, Sr.; Omar Valverde, Lincoln, Sr.; Jeff Westra, Rocky Mountain, Sr.
Defensive Player of the Year: Patrick Slogic, Liberty, Sr.
The 6-foot-4 Slogic has been a force since he stepped onto the pitch for the Lancers, and he turned in yet another standout season. Slogic keyed a defense that allowed only eight goals in 17 games this season. That sounds impressive enough, but figure in that the Lancers played a schedule which included eight teams who advanced to the 5A state tournament and four who reached the postseason in 4A, three of which advanced to at least the quarterfinals. Slogic also scored three goals and added two assists. He was a first-team all-state selection by the Colorado High School Soccer Coaches Association.
Honorable mention: Colin Eberl-Coe, Pomona, Sr.; Mark Dotseth, Air Academy, Sr.; Will Gustafson, Fort Collins, Sr.; Scott Uhlrich, Fort Collins, Sr.
Goalkeeper of the Year: Chris Couperus, Fort Collins, Sr.
Couperus was a near-unanimous choice as the classification’s top keeper. In leading the Lambkins to their second state title in five years, Couperus certainly was aided by a stout defense that included player-of-the-year runner-up Will Gustafson, but he also excelled in the state’s top league and against a difficult schedule. The Front Range League provided four of the state’s eight quarterfinalists, and the Lambkins (17-2-1) played 14 games against teams that played in the 5A state tournament. Couperus posted seven shutouts, including a 3-0 win in the title game against a Lincoln team that had scored 94 goals. He allowed only three goals in five playoff games and was a first-team all-state selection by the Colorado High School Soccer Coaches Association.
Honorable mention: Matt Kagie, Cherry Creek, Jr.; Shay Niemeyer, Arapahoe, Jr.; Justin Tomasetti, Heritage, Sr.
Offensive Player of the Year: Cole Chapleski, Broomfield, Sr.
Chapleski easily outdistanced some stiff competition to earn top honors. In what capped a stellar career, Chapleski scored 21 goals and tallied 12 assists playing primarily as a central midfielder. He guided the Eagles to an 18-1 season and the top seed in the 4A state tournament, with the lone loss coming to eventual champion 1-0 in the state semifinals. Chapleski will play at the University of Denver, choosing the Pioneers over Wake Forest, Stanford, Santa Clara and Harvard. He was selected the classification’s player of the year by the Colorado High School Soccer Coaches Association and was the state’s lone selection for All-American recognition by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America.
Honorable mention: Austin Bell, Mullen, Sr.; Jose Gallarza, Fort Morgan, Sr.; Gustavo Hildago, Rock Canyon, Sr.; Reid Hukari, Wheat Ridge, Sr.; Fernando Magallanes, Denver North, Jr.; Michael Mendez, Kennedy, Sr.; TJ Podio, Pueblo West, Sr.; Jared Roberts, Mullen, Sr.; Curtis Stecyk, Niwot, Sr.; Santiago Velez, Niwot, Jr.
Defensive Player of the Year: Greg Lawson, Cheyenne Mountain, Sr.
The 4A ranks featured some top defenders, with Lawson emerging from a quality field. Cheyenne Mountain possessed one of the state’s top defenses, thanks to the efforts of Lawson. The Indians allowed only nine goals in 18 games while recording 13 shutouts in support of keeper Zach Yellen. Lawson managed one goal and one assist this season. He was a first-team all-state selection by the Colorado High School Soccer Coaches Association.
Honorable mention: Alex Davis, Rock Canyon, Sr.; Michele Corbet, Niwot, Sr.; Jon-Michael Krasovic, Pueblo Centennial, Sr.; Hector Parragas, Castle View, Sr.; Ramon Rodriguez, Centaurus, Sr.; Connor Tedstrom, Battle Mountain, Sr.; Nick Terry, Niwot, Sr.; Dylan Thompson, D’Evelyn, Jr.
Goalkeeper of the Year: Jacob Lissek, Rock Canyon, Sr.
Lissek, a unanimous choice by state coaches, had his full arsenal on display in the state title game, doing his best to ensure a repeat championship for the Jaguars. The lengthy senior made numerous difficult and timely saves to keep Rock Canyon alive before Niwot finally broke through 1-0 in overtime. On the season he had a .979 save percentage, allowing only 16 goals while making 106 saves in 20 games. He had five shutouts. He was a first-team all-state selection by the Colorado High School Soccer Coaches Association.
Honorable mention: Clint Hervert, Battle Mountain, Sr.; Nathan Schemmel, Silver Creek, Sr.; Zach Solis, Canon City, Sr.; Zach Yellen, Cheyenne Mountain, Sr.
Offensive Player of the Year: Brent Ham, Denver Christian, Sr.
Ham was selected the classification’s player of the year by the Colorado High School Soccer Coaches Association and was a National Soccer Coaches Association of America All-Region nominee. The senior helped the Crusaders to the title game, scoring 18 goals while contributing nine assists. Ham scored three goals in a game twice this season, including in the playoffs against Lake County.
Honorable mention: Juan Alverez, James Irwin, Sr.; Daniel Broas, Colorado Springs Christian, Jr.; Zac Egeler, Colorado Springs Christian, Jr.; Jack Gendron, St. Mary’s, Sr.; Elliott Levett, Middle Park, Sr.; JP Mile, Peak to Peak, Sr.; EJ Nelson, The Classical Academy, Sr.; Carlos Rea, Lake County, Sr.; Jamie Tinnin, Bayfield, Sr.; Brady Wisott, Peak to Peak, Sr.
Defensive Player of the Year: Chad Edmundson, Colorado Springs Christian, Jr.
Much of the attention on state champion Colorado Springs Christian centered on the high-powered offense that amassed 95 goals. With that kind of output it was easy to forget about a defense guided by Edmundson that yielded only 10 goals in 20 games and posted 12 shutouts. Edmundson also got involved offensively, totaling seven goals and two assists for a club that loses just five seniors. Edmundson also was a first-team all-state selection by the Colorado High School Soccer Coaches Association and a National Soccer Coaches Association of America All-Region nominee.
Honorable mention: Marcus Landhuis, Denver Christian, Sr.; Colin Lanser, Denver Christian, Sr.; Jose Moreno, Alexander Dawson, Sr.; Scott Pistor, Colorado Springs Christian, Sr.; Austin Puckett, Berthoud, Sr.; Will Sharkey, St. Mary’s, Sr.
Goalkeeper of the Year: Ross Thompson, Salida, Jr.
Perhaps a testament to Thompson’s ability is that the Spartans went only 7-5 this season and failed to make the playoffs, yet he was the consensus choice as the classification’s top keeper. Thompson surrendered only seven goals and posted four shutouts in being selected first-team all-state by the Colorado High School Soccer Coaches Association.
Honorable mention: Jacob Calhoun, St. Mary’s, Fr.; Hayden Loudenslager, Faith Christian, Sr.; Aaron Mangelsen, Ridgway, Sr.; Kyle Potts, Middle Park, Sr.; Patrick Sanchez, Lutheran-Parker, So.; Alex Wood, Colorado Springs Christian, Sr.
About the MaxPreps Players of the Year: MaxPreps invited every boys soccer coach in the state to nominate players and selections were based on those nominations. A player must have been nominated by at least two coaches to be selected.