No fewer than 11 area soccer players earned first-team recognition on their respective all-conference first teams when the picks were recently announced, with four more earning honorable-mention nods.
Whitehall, which advanced to the regional final before falling to Elk Rapids on penalty kicks, boasted five all-West Michigan Conference first-team mentions, fittingly all seniors. Kalup Bentz, Ray Copley, Isaac Love, Nick Rands and Chris Saunders received the first-team honors.
Copley was the Vikings’ top scorer this season, leading the team in goals and assists. He posted 24 and 22 in each respective category during an outstanding senior season. Copley, along with Saunders and Jared Jaekel, tied for team MVP honors.
Saunders received recognition for being an explosive scorer in his own right, piling up 23 goals this season and adding nine assists.
Rands scored 14 times in 2012 and added 21 assists, good for second on the team in that category.
“They were half the team goals and 65% of the assists,” Whitehall coach Bryan Mahan said of the three forwards. “They really were a triple threat. It was hard to stop us when you have to deal with three top-shelf attackers.”
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