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Making it to the next level and competing for a state championship are the primary goals for New Albany soccer. Helping to achieve that is new head coach Caryl Vogel, who will replace Les Huntington and Edgar Capaning, working with both the boys’ and girls’ programs.
A native of Pontotoc, Vogel played for the Warriors, as well as the Tupelo Futbol Club and Itawamba Community College before his career was cut short due to injury.
Finishing with his bachelor’s degree from Mississippi State and currently working on his master’s at the University of Mississippi, Vogel enters his first year coaching and is excited to work at New Albany as a paraprofessional.
“I love the game, and I know the game well, and I hope to bring that knowledge to this program,” Vogel said. “There’s a great tradition at New Albany, and I want to continue that. I want to win division championships and hopefully state championships as well. We’re going to work as a team, play together and as a family.”
Vogel admits there is some pressure, as he is a young coach working with both boys’ and girls’ teams, who have reached the playoffs several times in recent years.
“I do feel like there’s a little pressure considering the history of the New Albany program, but since I’m only coaching and not teaching, I have a lot more time to dedicate to these programs,” he said. “Being my first year coaching, I’m going to work as hard as I can for this school and give it all of my time and effort.”
The first step for Vogel with the team is holding tryouts, which will take place on Friday and next Tuesday, June 19 at BNA Bank Park. After evaluating his talent for next season, Vogel is prepared to start with summer workouts.
“The first thing I’ll do is get in there and evaluate the talent. After that, I’ll have a cycle we’ll go through, starting with touches and different types of drills, all leading up to the tactical part,” Vogel said. “I want smart players, so not just kicking the ball around. It won’t be just physical, but mental as well, which is what will take a program like New Albany a little higher; just a knowledge on the field because they already have the athletes, we just need to get the soccer knowledge a little higher.”
Tuesday’s tryouts are 4:30 p.m. for the girls and boys at 6:30 p.m.