High School Soccer

PREP BOYS’ SOCCER PREVIEW: Mount Baker Mountaineers

Coach: Jason Jorgensen

Last year: Finished 7-12-1 overall and 4-7-1 in the Northwest Conference. ... Went 1-2 in the district playoffs before falling to Seattle Academy in tri-districts.

Players to watch: Taylor Bruntil (Sr., D), Eridan Niethardt-Smith (Sr., D)

Outlook: The Mountaineers lost four regulars from last season but a strong core returns and is in better shape than ever. “They’re more fit than they have been in the past,” coach Jason Jorgensen said in a phone interview. “We have a bunch of hard workers with a lot of good attitudes. They’ve bonded very well coming in.” That hardwork is a staple for the Mountaineers every year and this year is no different. “I think our strength is our work rate and determination from the get go.” Leading the team are senior defenders Taylor Bruntil and Eridan Niethardt-Smith, who will try to get the Mountaineers to the state tournament for the first time since 2001. “We always have the same goal — to make state. It’s what every team wants to do. We have to make sure we get fit, get touches on the ball and jell as a team.”