The Secrets to the Morris Hills Boys Soccer Team

This fall season was highlighted by a remarkable run to the State Finals by the Morris Hills Boys Soccer Team. However, the ride to get there was full of emotion, thrill, triumph, and a bunch of goals. 

It all started with a splendid regular season, where the team had a record of 7-4, and displayed promising signs all season long. Of all the regular season games, their most impressive win came against district rivals Morris Knolls High School, where the team scored a staggering 7 goals to take home the win. 

This impressive campaign would continue into the county tournament, where the Scarlet Knights would reach the semifinals round as the seventh seed, before losing to the Delbarton School Soccer Team. Despite the loss, the team showcased a remarkable win in the quarterfinal round of the tournament by shutting out the second-seeded Randolph High School Soccer Team. 

All these glimpses of potential and promise would finally manifest during their run during the State Sectional Tournament. On the road to the finals, the Scarlet Knights displayed early dominance by blowing out Paramus High School and Morris Knolls High School in the first and second rounds, respectively. In the semifinals round, Morris Hills would face the number one-seeded Ramapo High School, where the Scarlet Knights outlasted the Gryphons in an absolute thriller that was decided by a penalty shootout. However, this impressive run in the Sectional Tournament would come to an end in the finals when Morris Hills would lose to Roxbury, ending the season for the Morris Hills Boys Soccer Team. Yet, the Scarlet Knights put forth an incredible season, nonetheless. 

However, given the tremendous triumph of the team, one question emerges: what are the secrets to their success?

The answer to this question comes straight from Coach Dul, coach of the Morris Hills High School Boys Soccer Team. 

 Well for one, we’re scoring a bunch of goals this season in comparison to previous seasons,” Coach Dul states. In fact, the team averaged an insane 2.7 goals per game this season, which is a big improvement from their average of 2.1 goals per game last season. Evidently, the team was simply an offensive powerhouse blowing away teams by consistently applying pressure and overwhelming them with goals on the offensive end of the field. 

However, despite their impressive offensive prowess, for Coach Dul, everything begins on defense, as he believes that the “key to a good offense is a good defense.” This year, the Scarlet Knights showcased their talent on the defensive field by shutting out top teams in big-time games. For instance, the team shut out Randolph in the quarterfinal round in the county tournament, which allowed them to qualify for the semifinals of the tournament. This would occur once again when the team would shut out Morris Knolls High School in the quarterfinals of the sectional tournament. 

The combination of playing unique, making good passes, putting defense first, and having a tenacious offense set the stage for one of the best seasons in Morris Hills Boys Soccer history, but there was still one crucial piece that connected everything together: culture.

“One of the most important cultural aspects of this team is that everybody works hard, no matter how good they are,” Coach Dul states. In fact, this very mindset is what allowed the team to get better year after year. On top of that, the team has amazing chemistry, led by their captains Erick Cortes, Rahul Nair, Jason Gomez, and Yonatan Figueroa, which allows them to be a cohesive team on and off the field. This very culture of hard work and dedication is what propelled the Scarlet Knights to being one of the best teams in the entire state. 

Though the team did not end the season the way they wanted, the Scarlet Knights will try and continue to be one of the best teams in the states behind their everlasting culture of hard work and dedication and their drive to fulfill one goal: to win.