MONTGOMERY, Ala. ---- The Huntingdon men’s soccer program and head coach Kevin Ray have announced the addition of seven newcomers who have completed their intent to enroll paperwork and have committed to play soccer for the Hawks in 2009.
Matty Bolding (Enterprise, Ala./Enterprise HS), Josh Epstein (Gulf Breeze, Fla./Gulf Breeze HS), Dillon Griggs (Troy, Ala./Lyman Ward Military Academy), Parker Hyde (Roswell, Ga./Lassiter HS), John Phillips (Montgomery, Ala./Taylor Road Academy), Matt Russell (Montgomery, Ala./Brew Tech HS) and Mike Vecsey (Moody, Ala./Moody HS) have been accepted to Huntingdon and will suit up for the Hawks next season.
Bolding played three seasons as a defender at Enterprise High School, spending his final season on the varsity squad. He also played two seasons for the Alabama Alliance Club Team.
“Matty competed on one of the top Club teams in southeast Alabama, so he knows what it takes to win,” Ray said. “He also played for a competitive high school program and should bring a winning-attitude to our team next season.”
Able to play both defender and midfielder, Epstein prepped at Gulf Breeze High School, where he was a member of the Dolphins' regional and state runner-up team in 2008. During his final season, Epstein scored five goals and assisted on eight others. He also was a member of the Pensacola Futbol Club Team.
“Josh is a guy who we hope can come in and contribute next season,” Ray continued. “He played for a strong Club Team and should be able to adjust to the speed of the college game quickly.”
One of two goalkeepers already committed, Griggs was a four-year player at Enterprise High School. As a senior, he helped the Wildcats to the Region Championship and State Final Four. He also has played Club soccer with the Enterprise Wings and the Alabama Alliance, where he helped the Wings to the Under-19 State Championship in 2004.
“Dillon played for two competitive Club teams and was successful with each,” Ray said. “He is athletic and should provide depth at the goalkeeper position for us next season.”
Hyde, a defender, prepped at Lassiter High School in Marietta, Ga., and helped the Trojans to Sweet 16 of the Georgia State Tournament. He has also played for several successful Club Teams, including the East Cobb YMCA, North Atlanta Soccer Association (NASA) and the Mid-City Lions, which will be traveling to London, England to participate in the Arsenal Festival, one of the top tournaments in Europe, this summer.
“I expect Parker will be able to come in and contribute immediately,” Ray said of the lone member of the signing class from Georgia. “He has a strong knowledge of the game and will be a nice addition to our defensive unit.”
A local product from Taylor Road Academy, Phillips was a three-year letterwinner and two-time AISA State Champion with the Tigers. A team captain as a senior, he was also named to the 2009 AISA All-State Tournament team, while also earning the Tigers’ Heart Award as a junior.
“I am excited to have John as part of our program,” Ray said. “He knows what it takes to win and I know he will work hard to continue to improve and be a successful player at the collegiate level.”
Also a local standout, Russell was a two-year starter in goal for Brewbaker Tech and helped the Rams to the 2009 Alabama State Playoffs. During his final season, Russell led the Rams to a 15-4 overall record, while posting nine shutouts. He was also a four-year member of the Capital City Streaks Club team.
“Matt had a very successful senior season at Brew Tech and will push our returning goalkeepers for playing time,” Ray continued. “In addition to being a strong player in the net, I expect that Matt will also contribute on the field this upcoming season.”
Vecsey joins the Hawks after spending the past five seasons playing for Moody High School in Moody, Ala. During his junior season, Vecsey scored 18 goals, a mark which ranked second on the team.
“Mike has the tools to come in and make us better at the forward position,” Ray said. “He has proven that he is a capable scorer, so hopefully his success at the prep level will carry over here.”
Huntingdon finished the 2008 season with a 3-14-1 overall record.