Revitalized Timberwolves off to a successful start | Boys soccer

Jackson’s veteran lineup produces winning results
By David Pan | Apr 06, 2018
Photo by: David R Pan Jackson’s Brenden Clark weaves his way between two Glacier Peak defenders during a Wesco 4A game Monday, April 2, at Everett Memorial Stadium.

The Jackson boys soccer team is demonstrating that a little bit of experience can go a long way.

With a lineup that includes almost everyone from last year’s team, the Timberwolves are off to their best start in five years with a 3-2-1 league record and a 5-2-1 overall mark.

The Wolfpack currently are one of five teams battling for the top spot in the Wesco 4A after Monday night’s 0-0 tie with defending league champion Glacier Peak. Jackson handed co-league leader Kamiak (4-1-1, 6-1-1) its only loss of the season – 1-0 – on Tuesday, March 27.

“I think things are going really well,” Wolfpack coach Brett Norton said. “I’ve seen incredible composure and experience this year compared to last year. It’s a really strong senior and junior class with most of those guys being starters since their freshmen year. They have a lot of confidence on the field.”

The defense is in good hands with senior goalkeeper Bradley Coon, who is a three-year varsity starter. Coon has missed no more than 40 minutes of play during his time at Jackson.

“He’s secured our net for several years,” Norton said. “He is really a student of the game. He understands proper angles and has the mindset and confidence to stand in and take on any opponent. He’s incredibly quick, is good with his hands and dominates the box.”

Senior co-captain Taylor Merwin leads a defense that has produced four shutouts and allowed only one goal in two other games.

“He is the nucleus and core of our defense,” Norton said. “He’s a very strong and talented player. He’s good in the air and really is the voice of the team. He directs his teammates. He’s always calm and composed under pressure.”

Senior co-captain Jake Williams helps guide the midfield.

“He’s tough as nails and is just a dominant force in the middle,” Norton said. “He’s an excellent distributor. He’s just a solid two-way player. He attacks and defends real well. If we need someone shut down, I put Jake Williams on him.”

Senior co-captain Connor Clark spearheads the Jackson offense that has scored 26 goals this season (17 were against nonconference opponents Oak Harbor and Everett).

“He’s probably the most dynamic ball handlers in the league,” Norton said. “He has incredible vision and tremendous confidence with the ball.”

Clark has transformed himself from a dribbler to a passer, Norton added.

Senior Brenden Clark is another standout on the offensive end with good speed.

“He can take any defender one-on-one and get by them,” Norton said. “He really has gotten the nose for the net.”

The Timberwolves wrap up the first part of the regular season by hosting Monroe at 7:30 p.m., Monday, April 9, at Everett Memorial Stadium.

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