PHS boys’ soccer receives post-season honors

Five players named to All-Conference, All-State teams

Posted 5/28/19

Following a memorable season that saw the Powell High School boys’ soccer team advance all the way to the 3A state championship game, five Panthers have received postseason honors.

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PHS boys’ soccer receives post-season honors

Five players named to All-Conference, All-State teams

Posted

Following a memorable season that saw the Powell High School boys’ soccer team advance all the way to the 3A state championship game, five Panthers have received postseason honors.

PHS keeper Ashton Brewer, defenders Cameron Wentz and Reece Bauer, midfielder Ernie Acevedo and forward Sam Bauer were named to the 3A West All-Conference team by the Wyoming Coaches’ Association; Brewer, Wentz and Acevedo were also named to the 3A All-State team.

“I was really happy for our boys, I think only Worland had more recognition than us on the conference and state level,” said PHS head coach Dave Gilliatt. “Those were the number one and the number two teams in the state [Worland and Powell], and I think the state tournament proved that. So I think our team probably should share the most recognition — though to be honest, I would have liked to have a couple of more on that list.”

Each coach submits a list of nominations to the WCA; included on Gilliatt’s list were defender Landon Sessions, 10-goal scorer Hawkin Sweeney and Garrett Morris.

“All three of those guys can hang their hats on the fact they were starters: They played nearly 80 minutes of every single game on a team that went to the state final,” Gilliatt said.

Reece Bauer was the only freshman named to the All-Conference team, an honor Gilliatt said was well-deserved.

“Reece [Bauer] made such a strong impression as an outside back, which is not easy to do — you’re not scoring goals and you’re not getting assists,” Gilliatt said. “It’s less stat-dependent and more about the impression you can make as a defender. And he was just a very tenacious player. He’s a natural in that position.”

Wentz began the season as an attacking forward, though when a need arose for a talented player to move to center back, Wentz got the call. The one-two punch of Wentz and Landon Sessions made for a formidable back line.

“I feel like they [Wentz and Sessions] both played better together,” Gilliatt said. “I think what it came down to was Cameron [Wentz] just made a little more dramatic clearances, a little more dramatic stops. His body type and his natural style of play gave us a good passing outlet as a center back, and he knew how to use his body to win balls in the air and to challenge on the ground.”

At midfield, Gilliatt said he had three deserving players in Acevedo, Sweeney and Morris, with Acevedo getting the nod for All-Conference and All-State.

“Ernie [Acevedo] has improved a lot,” Gilliatt said. “I’ve watched him grow up as a player, and I asked him at the beginning of the season to be a bulldog at that center mid. He was a natural fit, and I know he caught the eye of Coach [Ben] McArthur over at the college. Ernie does well in working in tight spaces, and the other thing he’s good at is winning the ball back. He often stifles the other attacking players; him getting All-Conference and All-State is a big deal.”

Despite missing a handful of games because of a concussion, Sam Bauer was named to the All- Conference team on the strength of a solid start to the season.

“Other coaches recognized Sam’s ability, and what he meant to this team when he wasn’t available to us,” Gilliatt said. “He made an impact on every single game he was in every single time, and he’s flexible — I can put him in attacking or defending. He can do well with any of those.”

Last season, Brewer split time in net with senior Gabe Katz; this year, the job was his. The sophomore recorded six shutouts on the season, making him one of the top keepers in the state.

“I think every single coach in the state recognized that Ashton [Brewer] was an excellent shot stopper,” Gilliatt said. “I think they saw him kind of up-and-coming as a freshman. He has room for improvement, as do all the guys, but he’s an excellent shot stopper.”

Brewer also emerged as a vocal leader on the team, often addressing his teammates in team huddles.

“You don’t have to be a captain to lead,” Gilliatt said, “and he proved that.”

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