Skaneateles A smile is still on Skaneateles boys soccer coach Kirk Atwater's face.
No it's not from still savoring last season's 22-0 masterpiece that produced the Lakers' first state Class B boys soccer championship, though who could blame him for not thinking of that fondly still.
Atwater's grin comes from getting another crack at it again with a whole new team. A team he believes could be very good.
"We have a good group of kids," Atwater said. "It's their time."
Still, those championship rings are barely out of the box. Trying to ignore what happened last year could prove difficult.
"What do we do now? It's a brand new season," Atwater said. "Obviously last year was a great year, but this is a brand new team."
Before wading into the 2011 Lakers, it's best to address the biggest question mark surrounding Atwater's squad.
How does one go about replacing 11 starters, of which 10 were seniors? Atwater's going to go about it with enthusiasm.
"Well, first we have six or seven seniors coming back that played significant roles (last year)," Atwater said. "Guys that were on that team are stepping into their roles."
Sam Goodell played important minutes last year as a midfielder. This year he's a starter, and expected to be a team leader.
"Sam's maybe our top player," Atwater said. "He's very skilled and makes his teammates better. He's one of the cornerstones of our offense this year."
Goodell will be joined in the Lakers' midfield by senior B.J. Kerr, sophomore Tyler Strods, and junior Sean Farrell.
Atwater likes his all-junior striker corps of Alex Brownlee, Ryan Higman, and Austin Amory. The backline is headed by veteran varsity performers Adam Miles and Ian Hilpl. They'll be joined by Michael Jorgenson, Jeff Kringer, and Kieran Daley. Skaneateles' last line of defense figures to be junior goalkeeper Eric Pola.