Despite having a senior-laden group, the Fairfield Ludlowe boys soccer team's 2013 season may go as far as its 10th graders take it.
The Falcons have a slew of senior talent returning from the squad that finished 6-9-2 and beat Staples for the first time. Ludlowe advanced to the state tournament and fell to local rival Fairfield Prep.
Still, Falcons head coach Kevin O'Hara sees the win over Staples, plus late season hard-fought losses to Class LL runner-up Prep, LL champion Norwalk and Greenwich as boosters to the 2013 campaign.
"We're trying to build on that momentum that the seniors last year led with," O'Hara said.
And Ludlowe did not lose many seniors, as O'Hara's highly touted juniors will jump into leadership roles. Ludlowe's captains are each seniors, sweeper Jordan Layne and center midfielder Eric Stahley, and forward Eric Winjum was a key contributor last year.
"He's very young," O'Hara said. "But (Meagher)'s a premier player. He's strong in the back. It looks like he's ready to go. We're very excited to have him."
Meagher's classmate, and transfer from Bridgeport Central, Tulio Almeida will be a center midfielder. O'Hara said as many as four sophomores could crack the Falcons' starting lineup and at a variety of positions.
"We have nine on the varsity and 14 more on JV," O'Hara said. "They're nipping at the bit for playing time. Any chance I get to give them playing time, I'm going to take."
Though they are always seemingly in the hunt for the FCIAC tournament every year, and have made the state tournament eight of the last nine years, the Falcons are still searching for their first FCIAC tournament win.
"The FCIAC is a strong league," O'Hara said. "We always seem to be just short of that No. 8 spot, but the kids have their eyes on reaching the FCIACs and being part of the dance."