Borough, Simek lead Colonels

October 01, 2004|JILL ERWIN

Brad Borough and Stan Simek swear they don't feel any pressure to lead the Centre College men's soccer team.

But when head coach Jeb Burch makes comments like this, it's hard to understand how they take it all in stride.

"Instead of putting it on the team, I'm going to put it on two players," Burch said he thought to himself before the season started. "I'm going to put it on two of my best players and I'm going to say, 'Hey guys, we've got to do this and we've got to do it right. You guys are the catalysts to it.' Now the focus becomes more on those two instead of on 20 guys. As long as those two guys are going, everyone around them will go."

Burch effectively put the success of the offense on Borough's shoulders and the defense on Simek's.

Borough, a junior midfielder, admitted that last season was a disappointment for him after a highly successful freshman year. He said the outspoken way Burch called Borough the catalyst for the offensive success of the Colonels (6-2, 1-1 Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference) before the season has helped him.


"I kind of take it as motivation," Borough said. "It gets me up for practices and games that I have to lead the team.

"This is probably the best team we've had in terms of the way it's meshed. Everybody gets along with everybody, and we just seem to click real well on and off the field."

Simek, a senior sweeper, was named a first team regional All-American last year and made second team all-SCAC. He was widely expected to be the team's main leader, but he said he doesn't feel singled out.

"I don't feel any pressure," Simek said. "I'm just out there playing with the rest of the guys. We're a team, and I don't really feel any added pressure on myself."

Confidence in his upperclassmen

Burch said he has confidence in his upperclassmen. Borough is the team's leading scorer, picking up nine points on three goals and three assists through Centre's first eight games. Simek has scored twice on just 10 shots.

"I will continue to say it: Simek has got to get us shutouts and Borough's got to get us goals. If we don't have those two players generating that on a consistent basis, we will not figure it out," Burch said. "It's a senior and a junior. If they can't handle this pressure ... they want this pressure."

Borough set a goal before this season to get 10 goals, and Burch said he's well on this way to reaching that. But beyond his scoring ability, it's his passing ability and the way he can see the field and make a play develop that helps the Colonels most.

"Brad's touch is exceptional and his technique is very good," Burch said. "With the speed we have on this team, you have to have somebody that's going to link everybody up. Brad has the technical ability to do that and the key is to do it quickly. He doesn't waste two to three touches."

"Brad is just an all-around excellent player," Simek said. "He doesn't have off days, he's always on, playing balls and doing whatever needs to get done. He's an excellent all-around player and he's very smart."

Simek's intelligence on the field also pay off for the Colonels, as both Borough and Burch credit the senior with keeping things in line on the defensive end.

"He's probably the most vocal and most educated soccer player I've ever played with," Borough said. "He knows the game really well and he keeps the defense organized."

"I can't call a timeout, I can't go out here ... soccer's not that way," Burch said. "That's where having a Stan Simek out there is so important."

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