Blake Boys Soccer in Midst of Best Start to Season Ever

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The Blake boys soccer team from Montgomery County is 11-1 in 2015, the best record the team has ever had through 12 games. The team has beaten tough competition like Magruder, Watkins Mill and the 2014 MPSSAA 4A state champions, Whitman.

The accomplishment is impressive- Blake has a tradition of producing talented boys soccer teams, winning an MPSSAA regional title and reaching the 4A state championship game as recently as 2013.

"We always have high expectations for the boys to compete to the best of their abilities and expect to win," head coach David Edlow said. "We believe that if they work hard to get better every day then they can compete against any other team we play."

Blake has been boosted this season by the addition of goalkeeper Billy Bridegum to their team, who transferred in from Good Counsel. He has five shutouts this season, and has a 0.55 goals against average.

Bridegum, who is a team captain as a junior, has also done a superb job of marshaling the young defense in front of him. Blake does not have a single senior getting consistent minutes along their back line. They also lost their two starting outside backs to injury before the season started. Despite these difficult circumstances Blake's defense has remained a stingy bunch, with Bridegum leading the way.

"He does an excellent job of keeping them organized and positive no matter what happens in games," Edlow said. "Billy's strength as a leader is that he makes everyone better by holding everyone responsible and taking ownership of their performances."

Blake's offense has also been strong this season. The team has scored multiple goals in all but three games, and have scored seven goals in a game twice. Over their past four games, Blake has scored 19 times.

Andres Gomez and Marcus Johnson, the team's two other captains, have been in excellent form this season. Gomez has been all over the place for Blake. He has been able to get his teammates involved regularly, recording 12 assists in addition to the 10 goals he has scored himself. Johnson has split time between midfield and defense, but has also scored 10 goals.

Edlow is hoping that the team's good form is going to transition to the playoffs. Despite the team's success during the regular season Edlow knows the playoffs, with its win or go home setup, is a different challenge. Adding to the difficulty of the playoffs for Blake is that they will play many of the teams they've already played this season.

"The playoffs will be challenging, with lots of one goal games played between Rockville, Magruder, Watkins Mill and Wheaton," Edlow said. "We know we must bring our best performance every night to win playoff games."
October 20th, 2015By: Wick Eisenberg

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