HARBOR SPRINGS — We’re just over six weeks away from the MHSAA Boys’ Soccer postseason tournament that kicks off in Michigan.
But as much as his Harbor Springs team opened the 2023 season, Rams coach Jeff Suffolk wished he was already here.
“They have really good chemistry, and the team really likes each other and hangs out with each other,” Suffolk said. “They’ve been training all year and it shows early. I hope Regions are in the first week of the season because they came out all set.
Going into Tuesday, the Rams opened the season 4-2, though the losses came against great special programs, including Warren De La Salle.
And on Tuesday night, Harbor Springs added to that start with the school’s first-ever victory over Cadillacs, another major program from the Big North Conference, in the final game, 7-0.
While it’s rare for BNC to get a win — even though it’s their second of the season after beating Alpina as well — it was this kind of start for the Rams.
“I don’t think it’s par for the course to beat a Big North team, but we’re excited to do it,” Suffolk said. “We’ve never beaten a Cadillac in the history of Harbor football, so that was a big deal for the guys.”
This came as Harbor’s fourth shutout of the season and the fourth game in which they scored at least four goals.
Speaking of four, it also came as the second game with four goals for freshman, yes, freshman Henry Juno.
So far, Jono has 12 goals to start his high school career with the Rams. He scored two goals in the first period against the Vikings, then added two more goals in the second period.
“She’s very wild,” Suffolk said of his new student. “He’s definitely a talented player, but it’s about the buildup around him as well. It doesn’t feel like he’s doing this against one, the whole team is piling around him and he’s scoring goals from everywhere. He’s a top striker, that’s for sure. We knew he was coming, so it’s good that he’s coming.” be with this upper class.”
Jono wasn’t the only freshman to score on Tuesday, as Aaron Baughman added a late goal, while sophomore Ryan Novak and senior Everett Shepherd also found the net.
Second year guard Greyson Rife also notched another winning goal for Harbor, before being delayed by an injury after a collision with a Cadillac player.
The Rams are young across the board, although Suffolk gets some good leadership from the guys who have been on the program, like Shepard, Jackson Deegan, Sam Miller and others.
“They are just an amazing group of kids. I love these guys,” Suffolk added. “Last season they lost to Charlevoix in the district semi-final and they all showed up the day after practice started. They were all focused. It’s a good crew and three years of working with this crew and teaching them a certain style of play and seeing them adapt to it is fun. They’re figuring it out now.”
The Rams will next welcome the Elk Rapids to Lake Michigan’s conference opener on Thursday, August 31 at Ottawa Stadium. They will then travel to Harbor Light Christian on Tuesday, September 5, after the long weekend.
Contact Sports Editor Drew Kochanny at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter, @DrewKochanny, and Instagram, @drewkochanny
This article originally appeared on The Petoskey News-Review: Playing Harbor Springs football beyond their years, ADD a second win over BNC