Five years ago, Boone County received news that its district would have a soccer team for the first time in history. Boys and girls ages 3 to 15 would be attending scheduled games and practices, battling against one another on the football field at Ramage Elementary School.
As time passed, though, the people of Boone County wanted something more, something better: a school soccer team. In 2010, the first official school soccer team was founded. It was at Madison Middle School, led by head coach Bobby Miller and assistant coaches Rodney Miller and Woody Hunter.
As the season progressed, the district took the program one more step, and that step led to Scott High School. In 2011, the county's first official high school soccer team was founded at Scott, home of the Skyhawks, by head coach Zach Boyd and assistant coach Rodney Miller.
On Aug. 20, the Skyhawks had their first match, and it was a tough one. They played Charleston Catholic, the reigning state champions, at Charleston Catholic. Scott lost to the Irish 0-7.
That didn't matter to the fans. After the game, Jane Searls, aunt of two of Scott's players, said, "I've watched the Boone County Soccer League and middle school soccer for years, but high school was more exciting than anything!"
The game after that was a wake-up call for the Skyhawks' next rival, Mingo Central High School. On Aug. 23, Scott took on Mingo Central in a home game. The Skyhawks left the field with a victory, winning 9-2 over their competitor.
The game was one of two the team won during the season. Unfortunately, it had 11 loses. After the Mingo Central game, Coach Boyd told the players, "This is one step for our county, but we still have a hundred to go."
The 2011 Scott High School soccer team consisted mainly of freshmen. They were Andrew Boktor, Trent Cook, Dezmond Lopez Cordero, Matthew Dunlap, Matthew Johnson, Michael Johnson, Zach Lester, Wade McComas, Gage Messer, Michael Miller, Donavan Moore and Nick Paitsel. Also on the team were sophomores Ryan Cowan and Brayden Smith, junior C.J. Thrush and senior Jonathan Elkins.
"Playing soccer is like reading a book. Once you get started, you can't stop!" said Dezmond Cordero, who played in the recreation league for a year before joining the high school team.
It has been a long journey since 2006 for Boone County, but the journey isn't over yet. Madison Middle School and Scott High School will continue to get better. Also, there are other schools in the county that don't have teams that could get them.