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‘The fight in the kids we have’: Lone Peak soccer plays up two classifications, finds success

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Junior Cash Beattie stops an attack by Park High School’s John Hasbrook, and advances toward midfield. PHOTO BY JASON BACAJ

By Gus Hammond EBS CONTRIBUTOR

Out of 114 Class C schools in Montana, only one has a soccer program: The rapidly growing Lone Peak High School. The LPHS boys and girls soccer teams are the newest at the school, as the teams were started only three years ago. And because they’re the only Class C school in the state with a soccer team, they compete up a few classifications higher than all other LPHS sports, in Class A.

“We are at some disadvantages obviously with the size of our school. We are not choosing from hundreds of kids like some programs are,” head coach Tony Coppola said. “I don’t think the size of our school matters. It’s more about the fight in the kids we have. We are honored to be the only Class C team to play and compete with Class A soccer.”

Our soccer teams play schools you may not hear about living in Big Sky. Our local soccer team’s competition level is different from the other sports at LPHS. Teams like Livingston, Columbia Falls, Whitefish, Billing Central, and many more Class A schools. 

You might think the competition would be unfair to our LPHS soccer teams. That is not correct. The girl’s soccer team ended the season with 3 wins. And the boys are entering the state tournament with 5 wins and 1 tie.

“We face a lot of adversity because we play teams that have JV and Varsity teams, and we play against towns with large clubs,” said Avery Dickerson, senior defensive center back.

Our girl’s soccer team season recently ended after a fantastic season under head coach Kim Dickerson. While the boy’s season continues into the state tournament on Saturday, Oct. 15, against Loyola Sacred Heart High School. To continue in the tournament depends on their success at Loyola. 

“Personally I feel pretty good about Loyola,” Junior Beckett Johnson said. “They seem like a very well-matched team and hopefully we can come back with the win.”

Fall sports are slowly finishing at LPHS. Let’s send our soccer, football, and volleyball teams off to the playoffs with a strong spirit.  

Senior Skylar Manka clears the ball during the LPHS homecoming game against Park High School. PHOTO BY JASON BACAJ

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