Let the feet do the talking

McKenna Breen, Staff Writer

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Thursday night, the stands are filled, students joined together to support the Milford soccer team. Many times they’ve be seen banging buckets and getting wild to show support.

This groups goes to most, if not all, of the team’s home games but they go to a lot of away games and keep the spirit going no matter the weather.

McKenna Breen
Milford soccer fans, who call themselves the “flop squad” cheering on the team.

Rain or shine you will see smiling faces in the stands.  The student support for the soccer team has been growing within the years. Much like the Friday night football game student sections, the soccer team has a large student section, called the Flop Squad by the Milford students. Ranked as the best student section in the state by Detroit Soccer Central, the Milford Flop Squad sets standards for soccer student sections.

When asked about the season so far, coach Thomas Hipple, who has been Varsity coach going on his 6th year at Milford states, “It’s absolutely amazing between the games, the community that comes out, the student section and parents.”

Players on the team have spoken up as well about how they feel when it comes to the Flop Squad.

McKenna Breen
Going over the game plan at the halftime huddle as a whole team.

Dylan Meek, who is one of the two freshmen on the varsity team this year, exclaimed “I think it’s amazing to have a fan base that is supportive of you!” The Flop Squad has been active showing up  at all home games and even many on the road. With two games most weeks and long practice hours, many players have to balance their focus on academics with soccer responsibilities.

Senior varsity captain Will Quane explains how playing soccer, “helps with time management and self- discipline.

It has influenced the way I prepare for things and how I study and train is pretty much the same.” Quane said players make sure to  put school as a priority above everything else.

After one of the best starts in recent history, Milford soccer fans are now asking: how far can this team go?

The team had been going steady in first  place until a critical game against Walled Lake Northern on Sept. 27, when the players went home with their first lost of the season, 3-1; The team officially finished in third during the regular season with Lakeland taking first.  Going into the conference tournament and MHSAA tournament, Milford has high hopes to win the LVC and make a run in the state playoffs.

Every player has different ways of mentally preparing themselves for matches.. Some may get “hyped” to get in the mindset while others prefer to be left alone and focus before the game. One of the seniors and captains Stephen Gillingham shares what he does before the games., “I use noise cancelling headphones and listen to music since my team can be very distracting; this lets me focus on my game plan so I can try to play my best.”

Throughout the season, Milford has already had many amazing games including victories against Garden City, Walled Lake Western, South Lyon, South Lyon East, and Waterford Mott.  This 2018 varsity soccer team members consider each other family.

No matter what grade, position, skill level, they join together and welcome everyone with open arms. “Having a team that is like ‘family’ is great for a team because when you understand everyone, you can play to everyone’s strengths making our level of competition higher,” Stephen Gillingham said. However this goes much further than just having a bond on the field.

“If someone needs something somewhere within the team there is always someone you can lean on especially with studying or any other school activities,” Hipple said. “Someone would always be happy to help you out.” So on and off the field this group of guys support one another.

They hope that these bonds will eventually lead to even more success at the end of the season. The soccer team’s next game is Monday October 15th . Come out and support your Mavs at Districts!