Soccer-Rama Is A Success for Brooke

Bruins Players Use Scrimmage to Bond Before Season

Photos by Cody Tomer Brooke’s Nick Cruny (31) controls the ball, while teammate Konner Govey (7) looks on during the Soccer-Rama at Brooke on Saturday.

WELLSBURG– “If you build it, they will come,” Brooke soccer coach Joe Pepe said of the Soccer-Rama event held at Brooke High School.

Pepe, along with plenty of help, began Soccer-Rama four years ago and the event has grown every year. On Sunday, 26 teams participated in scrimmage matches on four soccer fields at Brooke in preparation for the upcoming season.

“If it weren’t for the help of the school administration, our athletic director Sean Blumette, our boosters and the referees, this event wouldn’t be here,” Pepe said. “The referees are here all day long and the boosters make donations and run everything. It is awesome.”

Boys teams such as Brooke, Steubenville, Tyler Consolidated, Oak Glen, Linsly, Wheeling Park, Steubenville Catholic and Indian Creek competed, along with Phillip Barbour, Preston, East Fairmont, Bridgeport, Buckhannon-Upshur and Carrolton.

Brooke, Oak Glen, Indian Creek, Steubenville, Madonna, Wheeling Park, Linsly, Robert C. Byrd, East Fairmont, Morgantown, Phillip Barbour and Preston took part in girls action.

Brooke senior captain Sierra Sesto has been a part of all four years of the excitement.

“Soccer-Rama is always a lot of fun,” Sesto said. “We get to see a lot of teams and during the game, we tell other players that they are doing a good job and we try to work together and help each other, even though we are playing against each other.”

To go along with the great sportsmanship displayed at the event, the long day spent with teammates can make a team stronger, as well.

“The best part about this is that I played with these girls in travel soccer,” Sesto said. “So coming into this, it was like nothing changed. It is just different teams that we are playing against.

“We kept the family united and as girls come in, we invited them into the family. The best part of soccer is that it is just a big family. The game puts us through some tough times but in between games we can unwind, bond and laugh.”

The day kicked off at 9 a.m. and wrapped up at 7 p.m., so Sesto and her teammates had plenty of time in between their three games to bond and enjoy the day.

“We have two foreign exchange students on the team this year,” Brooke senior Sydney DeFranco said. “Kate is from Russia and Hannah is from Italy and we got to spend time with them and they got to know us more, too. It was a lot of fun.

Fellow Brooke senior Ally Myers added: “It is different every year but it is always the same concept, coming together as a team. No matter if we do good or bad, we win and lose as a team.”

The Brooke boys were led by senior Konner Govey, who is hoping to have a strong finish to his high school career.

“It felt pretty good out there,” Govey said. “The team looks better from last year and we were able to work on our passing, shooting and getting opportunities (Saturday). This really gives us a chance to work on everything and it is a nice look for the season.”

The start of the 2017 soccer season is right around the corner and Bruins senior Gage Barnhart is very optimistic about what is to come for his team.

“We use this event to see how we have grown and how we have gotten better throughout the years,” Barnhart said. “It feels good to know that Brooke is coming back to the top. I just can’t wait for Wheeling Park.”