Youthful GPS Soccer Team Hoping to Defend State Title

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Chattanooga-(WDEF-TV) It appears the GPS soccer team is already in the Halloween spirit because they’re scary good. They won the state title last year, and they’re back in the title mix this season with a roster filled with only two seniors.

After losing five talented seniors from last year’s state title team, GPS entered this season with a roster of 70-percent underclassmen.
Said senior Meg Priest:”If you just look at us on paper. It’s senior. Freshman. Freshman. Freshman. Junior. Sophomore. Senior. Freshman. Freshman. Freshman.”
Imagine how the head coach feels with a team of freshmen, freshmen, freshmen.
Said head coach Patrick Winecoff:”The part that’s always interesting is we have so many freshman and one 8th grader. Sometimes it’s like herding cats.”
Well these cats have clawed their way to a 14-2 record and a number one ranking.
Said freshman Kennedy Ball:”There was a point where I was pretty surprised. I was like wow. I thought it would be a lot harder this year because we lost all those seniors.”
Reporter:”has this team exceeded your expectations kind of given how young they are?”
Said Winecoff:”Yes and no. I mean yes in as much as they are not making the mistakes you would expect them to make given their age, but they are very good players.”.
It’s easy to rack up wins when you score like GPS can. They’ve enjoyed nine matches this year where they have scored five or more goals.
Said Ball:”I guess once we start scoring it’s like repetition, and we get on like a high.”
Added Priest:”And then our coach is really focused on making us go to the end line. So that’s really how we score a lot of our goals is going all the way and then passing.”
After clinching the East Region Title on Tuesday, it’s playoff time for the Bruisers.
Said Winecoff:”I’m really excited for them. I think they have an opportunity to go deep into the playoffs.”

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Rick Nyman grew up in Anniston, Alabama and attended the University of Alabama. His television career started at WJSU-TV in Anniston where he had the opportunity to cover SEC football with Alabama and Auburn. Anniston is just 20 minutes from the Talladega Speedway, so NASCAR was a big part of his sports coverage. Due to this he was able to interview Davey Allison, Dale Earnhardt, Jeff Gordon, and several other top-name NASCAR drivers. Rick's next television job was in Savannah, Georgia, where he covered basketball player Kwame Brown (now with the Washington Wizards), who later became the first ever high school player selected as the top pick in the NBA draft. He covered the PGA Tour's annual swing thru Hilton Head and also had the opportunity of covering the Atlanta Falcons Super Bowl appearance in 1999 in Miami. Rick especially enjoys all the atmosphere, tradition and drama of college football. He also likes profiling sports personalities and learning what drives them both on and off the field. If he's not covering sports, he's either watching Seinfield or David Letterman, playing golf, reading, or working out. What he enjoys about Chattanooga is the passion people have for sports. The mountainous region of Chattanooga reminds him of his hometown of Anniston, which also has big, beautiful trees and plenty of hills. You can contact Rick at rnyman@wdef.com.