Barret George, leader of Marlette shut-down defense, heads All-Advertiser Soccer Team

(Submitted photo) Marlette's Barret George (7) kicks in a goal during game action earlier this year. George is The Advertiser Boys' Soccer Player of the Year.
(Submitted photo)
Marlette’s Barret George (7) kicks in a goal during game action earlier this year. George is The Advertiser Boys’ Soccer Player of the Year.

The Marlette boys’ soccer team enjoyed the best season in school history this fall. And the reason was due to its epic defense.

Led by Advertiser Boys’ Soccer Player of the Year Barret George, the Red Raiders rolled to an 15-0-1 regular season record. In the 16 games, the Marlette defense allowed a total of just four goals and won the Greater Thumb South with a perfect 6-0 record.

And the magical season extended into the playoffs.

The Red Raiders won their second Division 4 district championship in a row, then advanced to the regional finals for the first time in the history of the program. Marlette didn’t give up a goal in the first three games of the postseason either, but then ran into Genesee Christian in the regional finals. Genesee Christian had pretty good defense too, and downed Marlette 3-0 on its way to a D-4 state championship.

George is joined on the All-Advertiser first team by teammates Jake Zuhlke and Marc Mason.

Tri-Valley Conference East co-champions Frankenmuth and North Branch also featured three members of the first team — the Eagles’ Shafer Webb, Alex Benko and Colin Reinert and the Broncos’ Ethan Amore, Steve Nadolski and Cameron Myers.

Unionville-Sebewaing Area also tied for a league championship — the Greater Thumb North with Bad Axe — and placed two players on the All-Advertiser team — Toby Kuhl and Brandon LaPratt.

Here is a look at the All-Advertiser Boys’ Soccer Team.

All-Advertiser Soccer Team

Barret George
Barret George

Player: Barrett George (Player of the Year)

School: Marlette

Grade: 12

Position: Defender

2016 highlights: Led Red Raiders to 18-1-1 record; main cog in defense that allowed just seven goals this year; first-team all-GTS for 6-0 league champs

Coach Dave Hayden: “He was the heart of our defense, he’s just a and big kid just hard to get around, the best defender I have seen in a while. Barret was the main part of a defense that only allowed four goals (during the regular season.)”

Shafer Webb
Shafer Webb

Player: Shafer Webb

School: Frankenmuth

Grade: 12

Position: Defender

2016 highlights: Honorable mention Division 3 all state; team captain; led Eagles with 12 goals and 15 total points; all-TVC-East

Coach John Ayala: “Shafer is the first (Frankenmuth) center back to lead the team in total points (goals plus assists). As a captain, he was very vocal in a positive way.”

Ethan Amore
Ethan Amore

Player: Ethan Amore

School: North Branch

Grade: 12

Position: Forward

2016 highlights: Holds career goal record with over 60 scores; led Broncos with 31 goals; first-team all-TVC-East; key player for league co-champs

Coach Rick Skelton: “He’s a good kid, plays hard, set the all-time record for career goals. I just liked coaching him a lot.”

Jake Zuhlke
Jake Zuhlke

Player: Jake Zhulke

School: Marlette

Grade: 12

Position: Forward

2016 highlights: Scored 18 goals, tied for team high; helped Red Raiders to best postseason finish in school history — the Division 4 regional finals; honorable mention Division 4 all-state

Coach Dave Hayden: “A high-energy goal-scorer for us. He tied (teammate) Seth Ferguson tied for the team lead in goals scored and they both had a lot of speed up front which helped us out.”

Alex Benko
Alex Benko

: Alex Benko

School: Frankenmuth

Grade: 12

Position: Midfielder

2016 highlights: All-TVC-East; third on TVC-East co-champion with seven goals and second on team with six assists; acted as key link between Eagles’ offense and defense

Coach John Ayala: “Alex had to assume the No. 10 spot (midfielder) on the team due to injuries. That made him the heart of the team. In this role, he triggered our offense by setting up teammates, which he did at the sacrifice of his own individual stats. Also a captain, he clearly led by example.”

Brandon LaPratt
Brandon LaPratt

Player: Brandon LaPratt

School: Unionville-Sebewaing Area

Grade: 12

Position: Defender

2016 highlights: Top Patriots defender with 217 stops; first-team all-GTN selection the past two years; all-district first-team after leading defense that held (Division 3 state finalist) Flint Powers to 6 goals in first round of districts

Coach Kevin Kuhl: “One of the hardest working players on the field, he has put in time to come out and help us, even with the girls’ program, just to put more touches on the ball.”

Steve Nadolski
Steve Nadolski

Player: Steve Nadolski

School: North Branch

Grade: 12

Position: Midfielder

2016 highlights: Second on team with 20 goals; all-TVC-East; helped Broncos to 9-1 league mark and co-championship

Coach Rick Skelton: “He was a captain, he helped me out a lot with the program. He likes to be around the soccer field a lot and enjoys being a part of soccer — all aspects of it.”

Colin Reinert
Colin Reinert

Player: Colin Reinert

School: Frankenmuth

Grade: 10

Position: Forward

2016 highlights: Second on team with 10 goals and 14 total points; all-TVC-East selection; helped Eagles to Division 3 district finals

Coach John Ayala: “Colin is a sophomore and the future. He possesses a blend of size, speed and skill and has played most positions outside of defense. He will be our most experienced varsity player next year and that bodes well for us.”

Cameron Myers
Cameron Myers

Player: Cameron Myers

School: North Branch

Grade: 12

Position: Defender

2016 highlights: Led Broncos with 162 defensive stops; helped team to a school-record 18-3 mark and co-TVC-East championship;

Coach Rick Skelton: “He was our top defender. At the beginning of the year one of our goals was to replace (last year’s top defender) Zac VanWormer and Cameron stepped right in and accomplished it.”

Marc Mason
Marc Mason

Player: Marc Mason

School: Marlette

Grade: 10

Position: Goalkeeper

2016 highlights: Saved 98 of 102 attempts; responsible for 10 shutouts; anchored defense that didn’t allow a goal in first three playoff games and just seven scores in the regular season

Coach Dave Hayden: “He made some nice saves throughout the year, he had a really good defense in front of him but he made some good saves for us. He has a knowledge of the position, good techniques and good fundamentals. He plays it well.”

Toby Kuhl
Toby Kuhl

Player: Toby Kuhl

School: Unionville-Sebewaing Area

Grade: 11

Position: Goalkeeper

2016 highlights: Helped Patriots to co-GTN championship (USA tied with Bad Axe); turned away 170 of 182 shots, a 93 percent rate; made first-team all-GTN for third year in a row

Coach Kevin Kuhl: “He’s been solid for the last two years. When he came out we started him on defense, and moved him to keeper, and he’s put in a lot of hard work this year to really shore up the defense.”

Second team

Max Gutierrez, Forward, Caro

Chase Alexander, Midfielder, Caro

Chris Walker, Forward, Caro

Seth Ferguson, Forward, Marlette

Sean Quade, Midfielder, Marlette

Adam Benko, Forward, Frankenmuth

Dalton Enequist, Midfielder, Frankenmuth

Harrison Cramer, Forward, Unionville-Sebewaing Area

Isaac Oh, Forward, Unionville-Sebewaing Area

Javi Martinez-Mateos, Defender, North Branch

Riley Schlaud, Midfielder, North Branch

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