From the Neosho Daily News:
â€œI thought we were slow and we were not able to score much last year,â€ Smith said. â€œI wanted to improve in those areas. We return everybody pretty much, so the goal was to find people that will help make us better and deeper.â€
Crowder was 6-10-3 in its inaugural season and returns 16 players, including most of the starters.
The new group of Roughriders includes: forwards Bryce Collier of Springfield Hillcrest (pictured above signing with Coach Smith back right) and Harrisonvilleâ€™s Jeremy Savage; a bunch of midfielders in Ben Ballhorn of Springfield Hillcrest (pictured in orange at right with Collier), Lebanonâ€™s Grant Bollig, George Fuente of University High in Waco, Texas, Josh Jesperson of Neosho, Logan Landis from Carl Junction and Neoshoâ€™s Aaron Tracy.
The defenders signed include Javier Albarran of Rogers, Ark., Trevor Pedigo of Springfield Kickapoo, Neoshoâ€™s Austin Williams and Irvin Sosa of Fayetteville, Ark.
Smith noted he expects to sign a couple more players as well.
â€œWe have kids we think are good and our speed should be better,â€ Smith said. â€œWe need to figure out how to play together. We added numbers in different places and I think we should be better.â€
For some background, Bryce Collier, Grant Bollig and Trevor Pedigo are teammates on the Springfield SC 90/91 team that are two-time defending state champions in Missouri. Both Collier and Bollig have played in the forward position as well as outside midfielder for SSC while Pedigo has played outside midfield and defense.
Bollig and Collier are also Southwest All-Stars for 2009. The game will be played Monday June 15th this year.