Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Kiski Area Makes Impressive Run

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Kiski Area Makes Impressive Run

Article excerpt

Kiski Area boy's soccer coach Sean Arnold readily admits the 2015 Cavaliers are not the most talented team he has ever had.

They finished the regular season with an 8-9-2 record and possess none of the leading scorers in the WPIAL.

But this is the most successful team Arnold has ever had. For this year's edition of the Cavaliers advanced to the Class AAA WPIAL semifinals for the first time in any of their eight consecutive playoff appearances with 2-1 victory against North Allegheny and a 1- 0 victory against Allderdice last week despite entering the tournament as the 14th seed.

The Cavaliers were shut out by Fox Chapel, 4-0, in the semifinals Monday and took on Seneca Valley in the consolation match Wednesday.

If you saw the Cavaliers at the beginning of the year, you'd never have predicted this success.

"Our first 10 games we were 2-6-2. We were outscored, 27-6," Arnold said. "We weren't playing good soccer at all. I was thinking about how do we fix this so we focused on the simple things. We weren't communicating."

"We had people who wouldn't pass to others believing they were a weak link," said forward Drake Neumann.

"We were kind of lazy and not in shape," junior goalkeeper Nicholas Bisceglia said.

With only three returning starters it looked like the first season of Cavaliers soccer on their field at the Intermediate school would be dreadful.

Then Arnold began to preach lessons that would've made Chuck Tanner and Willie Stargell proud - fundamentals and family.

For instance, Arnold encouraged his team to stand up in the 18- yard box and make the other team come to them, thereby letting their opponent make the mistakes. Once Kiski got possession, the goal was to hold onto the ball and play smart.

Attitude was another component. When the Cavaliers break from their huddle, they don't yell "team." They shout "family. …

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