Yoe soccer continues to grow at new season nears


As 2016 comes to an end and 2017 begins, the winter sports season will soon be in full swing in Cameron.  Basketball and wrestling has been in progress for a number of weeks now and soccer will be joining that group at the beginning of January. 



The Yoe soccer team - headed by Kevin Webb - will enter the new season with a roster that will have a mix senior leadership, but overall will be young, as five starters will have to be replaced. 


Benny Paredes, Xavier Torres and Noah Kostroun are three seniors returning to help lead the newcomers to the roster.


As a junior, Paredes was arguably the Yoemen’s most valuable player, earning a first team all-district selection out of 26-4A. 


“He's a four year starter for us and is invaluable to our program,” said Webb.  “Benny's a really good young man who's a hard worker and loves the game.  He is a very talented offensive threat and I'm looking forward to another great season from him.”


Webb also said that Torres (goalkeeper) and Kostroun (defender) will be important to the team’s success this season.


“Xavier Torres is another strong leader on our team.  He's developed into a very mature and dedicated player.  He takes on the responsibility of helping lead the younger players and does a great job as one of our team captains.”


Webb added on Kostroun: “Noah Kostroun brings a lot of athleticism to our defensive side of the field.  He plays extremely hard and gives everything he's got every game.”


Cameron is once again placed in 26-4A, which is also the home of Austin Eastside Memorial, Giddings, Gonzales, La Grange, Smithville and Taylor.


The district remains essentially the same as last season with the addition of Eastside - a drop down from 5A. 


“We're fortunate that we're in a soccer district, but we're challenged in that we're the only 3A team in our district,” said Webb.  “Some districts are scattered with 3A, but through realignment this is where we compete.  This is a very competitive district.  The two dominant programs in our district have been Giddings and Gonzales.”


With a young team, early struggles are to be expected.  However, Webb feels this group has a strong work ethic that should have them competing for a playoff spot once district play gets underway.


“I believe this team will probably take some lumps early on, but will continue to improve and be a challenge for a playoff spot by the end of the season.  “They are a very hardworking group of young men and when you're lacking in experience, that's exactly what a coach is looking for.  I think these young men have a passion and love of the game and that's going to show through this season.”


Lady Yoe

Much like the boys, the Lady Yoe has group of five returning starters, but will have a large core of underclassmen on the 2017 roster. 


Of the returning starters, Savannah Kruse (defender) is the lone senior.  Lady Yoe head coach Laura Dickson noted that Kruse, along with junior Faith Kistler, will play key roles on defense. 


Midfielder/defender Karla Martinez was Cameron’s top newcomer last year as a sophomore.  “She (Martinez) was a defensive threat last year, and this year will play more of a midfielder role,” said Dickson.  “She has gained some confidence in the game and is also a great leader for us.”


Leslie Castillo, another junior, is also expected to be a team leader.  “She has done a great job of leading by example this season so far,” stated Dickson.  “She is a player that I can ask to play any position, and she will go out there and give me her best at all times.”


The Lady Yoe will be competing in 26-4A, which is made up of the same teams from the boys district.  This will the fifth season the Lady Yoe have been included in a UIL district, and it will once again be a challenge to compete against larger classification schools.   


“A huge challenge is that we are the only 3A school in the district, but I am thankful that we are allowed to compete,” said Dickson.  “The biggest threat in district play for the past two seasons has been Giddings.  They have a very strong program and are consistently very competitive, and have been undefeated while we were in the same district. I expect them to be just as strong this season.”


Dickson noted that of the 32 players at practice, 17 of those are freshmen.  This group will be young and inexperienced, but as with all students at Yoe High, effort will be at its highest. 


“We are very young and inexperienced, but the girls have come out with a determination to get better,” said Dickson, who added that the girls have only been practicing for a few weeks but are ready to work.