Bunting a super sophomore

All-County Boys Soccer

All-County Boys Soccer

December 11, 2009|By DAN KAUFFMAN

Grace Academy forward Luke Bunting may only be a sophomore, but he sure doesn't play like one.

As the go-to guy at the heart of the Knights' formidable attack, Bunting led Washington County in goals (28), assists (22) and points (78) and led Grace to Mason Dixon Christian Conference regular-season and tournament championships.

Bunting's final act of the 2009 season was his finest -- winning Best Offensive Player honors with five goals and three assists in five games as the Knights won the National Association of Christian Athletes Division II national title.

Bunting is The Herald-Mail 2009 Washington County Boys Soccer Player of the Year.

"(Nationals) was a very good experience," Bunting said. "In the semifinals I had a hat trick and we played really well. Then we came out on fire in the final. After we won, we were all just thinking, 'Wow, we won a national championship.'"


Grace coach Andrew Serafini tried to explain what makes Bunting so good, so young.

"He's physically big. He's aggressive, he thinks offensively and some kids just know how to finish," Serafini said. "It's his life. He plays soccer year-round for a Harrisburg club team that's very competitive. Having two older brothers makes a big difference, he got kicked around in his backyard for years."

Matt Bunting played for Cumberland Valley Christian several years ago. Nick Bunting, an All-County First Team member as a sophomore at Grace two years ago, is now a senior at Chambersburg and was a key member of the Trojans' attack this season.

While Luke Bunting was the Knights' top scoring threat, he also showed vision and unselfishness to find teammates when he was the focus of opposing defenses.

"I don't always have to score, I can give up the ball and (my teammates) can do the work, also," Bunting said. "The end of the year, I didn't even know what (my stats) were. I was surprised I had almost as many assists as goals."

"He takes our corners for us and delivers beautiful balls," Serafini said. "He takes a lot of free kicks, he's beaten people dribbling and made some shots from impossible angles."

Bunting is joined on The Herald-Mail 2009 All-County First Team by:

Alex Aleshire, Williamsport

Sophomore goalkeeper was dazzling between the posts for the Wildcats, making 137 saves -- many of the sensational variety -- and posting 12 shutouts in 18 games.

Sean Koontz, Grace Academy

Senior defender was named Best Defensive Player at the National Association of Christian Athletes Division II tournament. The Knights gave up just 15 goals in 28 games.

Andrew Ludwick, Saint James

Junior midfielder needed just 14 games to rack up 13 goals and 7 assists for a 2.36 points-per-game average for the Saints.

Nelson Moreno, North Hagerstown

Senior forward created numerous opportunities with his play-making skills and finished with 6 goals and 6 assists for the MVAL Antietam champion Hubs.

Zack Morgan, Grace Academy

Senior played as both a forward and a midfielder and finished the season with 18 goals and 18 assists for the Knights. Morgan made the NACA Division II all-tournament team.

Gavin Myers, Clear Spring

Junior defender finished with 3 goals and an assist in addition to his defensive work and make the MVAL Antietam first team.

Mark Oliver, Williamsport

Senior midfielder had 2 goals and an assist, but more importantly, his passing and possession skills helped the Wildcats transition from defense to offense. An MVAL Antietam first-teamer.

Frederick Owusu-Ayim, North Hagerstown

Senior forward used his blazing speed and upper-body strength to finish with 9 goals and 3 assists as a dangerous threat up top for the Hubs.

Max Psillas, North Hagerstown

Junior midfielder was a fantastic two-way player for the Hubs. He finished with six goals and an assist, and was a major reason why North surrendered just 19 goals in 16 matches.

Devin Repp, Clear Spring

Junior defender was in lock-step with teammate Myers -- 3 goals, an assist, solid defense and an MVAL Antietam first-team nod.

Caleb Serafini, Grace Academy

Senior midfielder gave the Knights yet another strong weapon offensively, finishing with 15 goals and 13 assists and making the NACA Division II all-tournament team.

Andrew Torres, Broadfording

Sophomore forward led the Lions with 21 goals and was second on the team with 10 assists as Broadfording won the Maryland Christian State Tournament title.

Stephen Torres, Broadfording

Senior midfielder was at the center of the Lions' explosive offense, as he finished with 17 goals and 6 assists and started many other scoring plays.

Bryan Whitmore, WilliamsportSenior midfielder finished with 7 goals and 8 assists for the Wildcats and was the only county player to be selected to the Maryland all-state team, as an honorable mention.

Second Team

Joey Barvir, Smithsburg, Senior, Forward

Mathew Blair, Clear Spring, Junior, Forward

Alex Bolinger, St. Maria Goretti, Senior, Defender

Kenny Frederickson, Grace Academy, Senior, Keeper

Cody Gardenhour, Williamsport, Sophomore, Forward

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