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Six all-state soccer players from Whittell

Mike Traum

Six players from the talented Whittell High girls soccer team and five from the boys team have received all-state honors.

Sophomore Courtney Benvenuto tops the girls list, having received a first-team selection. Junior Sabrina Darrow and sophomore Corky Novotny were named second-team, while junior Megan Glasson, sophomore Renee Cascino and freshman Caitlin Fagan were given honorable mention.

“They are all well-deserving. There were other players who deserved mention, but there’s never enough room,” said coach Mike Leeper, whose squad graduates just two seniors from a team that has qualified for the state tournament in each of the program’s two-year existence. “We should be right in the mix of things (next year) with so many strong returners. Many of them are playing soccer year-round, which will help them develop. They should be tough.”

On the boys side, juniors Jose Gonzales and Dusty Apocotos and senior Jesse Rizzo were named to the first team. Sophomores Kyle Spignola and Todd Echan received second-team status.

“They had good years and it’s great to see they were recognized for that. It’s a nice nucleus to have back,” said coach Steve Maltase, who’ll see Apocotos, Spignola and Echan return to the midfield position.


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