Before you start scrolling the list, please read the opening carefully.
First, not every senior is on this list. There are several reasons behind this. Some players I couldn’t find stats, accolades, or information on, but all of these seniors on this list are here because someone (the player themselves, their parents, their coaches, a teammate, and we even had another player’s parent reach out to make sure someone was included). We did not leave anyone off on purpose.
The second piece, there may be some slight inaccuracies or missing information in this article. I got my information from many different sources, including some sources that are not always correct (namely social media and MaxPreps statistics). On top of that, no matter how hard I tried to log in and pay for a Lincoln Journal Star account (to access their postseason awards), their website wouldn’t accept any of my credit cards. Local newspapers shouldn’t complain about their readership when they don’t have a functioning and easy website for readers to pay for access, but I digress.
Lastly, Chace and I enjoyed covering high school soccer immensely this season and we can’t wait to do an even better job next Spring. We have been blessed to receive a little support from coaches and parents over the past two weeks, and we will thank them when the time is right, but we can also use more support. We will be coming out with a Patreon account this summer, but if you would like to get the ball rolling on your support now you can visit our Nebraska Soccer Talk Venmo: https://venmo.com/u/nebraska_talk.
Any individuals that support us now, will be instantly included in the Patreon supporters group when we get it started and will receive benefits in line with their support!
Class A Boys – Senior Send-Off
Jayden Kreis – Goalkeeper, Papillion La Vista – Kreis was a 2-year starter for the Papillion La Vista Monarchs. In that time, he compiled a 20-14 record with 10 shutouts. Kreis is committed to Buena Vista University Soccer, a Division III school in Storm Lake, Iowa. Omaha World Herald Class Honorable Mention.
Efren Flores – Goalkeeper, Millard South – The Patriots rode Cooney Magic and a solid goalkeeper (and captain) in Efren Flores to their first state tournament berth in many years. Flores’ performances earned him a nod on the OWH Class A Second Team nod and a LJS Class A Honorable Mention. Flores is committed to Concordia (NE) University to continue his education and soccer career.
Alexander Arriola – Midfielder, Bellevue East – Arriola was captain of the Bellevue East Soccer and plays club soccer for Gretna Elite Academy. Per his Twitter, Arriola has committed to continuing his career at Upper Iowa University Soccer, a Division II school in Fayette, Iowa.
Cole Lammel – Defender, Millard South – Lammel was a three-year member of the Millard South Patriots Varsity. The Millard South squad made the 2021 State Tournament this year. Lammel was named to the LJS Super State First Team and the Class A All State team. Also named to the OWH First Team All Nebraska, First Team Class A, and First Team All-Metro. Per his Twitter, Lammel will be joining Northwest Missouri State Football as a kicker/punter, Northwest Missouri State is a Division II powerhouse located in Maryville, Missouri.
Nick Sells – Defender, Papillion La Vista – Sells appeared in the 35 matches in his career for the Papillion La Vista Monarchs. He was a Class A Honorable Mention by the LJS and OWH. He is continuing his soccer career at Carroll University, a Division III school in Waukesha, WI.
Patrick Long – Forward, Gretna – Long notched 7 goals and 2 assists (in 8 games) for Gretna High School en route to State Championship berth and a semifinal finish. Goal of the season candidate against Bryan in District Finals. Long is continuing his soccer career at Midland University. Long earned Class A Honorable Mention honors from Omaha World Herald. Long also picked up MVP honors from the SONE Senior Soccer Showcase.
Sam Sundstrom – Defender, Elkhorn South – Appeared in all 15 games for the Storm in the 2021 season, earned Class A Honorable Mention from LJS and second team all-metro from OWH.
Haider Al-Barakat – Forward, Lincoln East – Earned Class A Honorable Mention from LJS, Class A second team from OWH, and named to the 2020 Nebraska U18 Boys Best XI during the 2020 Nebraska State Cup. Barakat notches 13 goals and 5 assists for the Lincoln East Spartans in the 2021 season.
Jacob Miller – Midfielder, Lincoln Southeast – Earned Class A Honorable Mention from LJS and OWH. Notched 2 goals and 1 assist this season. Helped lead Knights to 2021 Class A State Tournament.
Caden Linsea – Midfielder, Gretna – Linsea just committed his future to Nebraska Wesleyan University. He was a member of a Gretna team that finished its season in the State Tournament Semi-Finals. Caden plays his club soccer for Gretna Elite Academy.
Eli Rhodes – Midfielder, Lincoln Southwest – Rhodes, the scorer of one of the most dramatic goals in recent State Championship history, was named to the LJS Super State team, OWH All Nebraska First team, and Class A All-State team. Eli finished high school with a 3.9 GPA, and finished this season with 15 goals and 16 assists. Rhodes is headed to Dakota Wesleyan where he will continue his academic and soccer careers.
Cedar Moyer – Forward, Gretna – Moyer shared the points lead for Gretna, but led the Dragons in assists this year. He helped the Dragons reach the State Tournament Semifinals, and his consistent performers put him in the LJS Super State Second Team, OWH All Nebraska Second Team, OWH All-Metro team as well as the Class A All-State Team. Moyer has committed to continuing his education and his soccer career at NJCAA powerhouse, Iowa Western Community College.
Damien Tran – Midfielder, Lincoln Southeast – Tran earned Class A Honorable Mention from LJS and OWH, notching 1 goal and 1 assist and helping lead Lincoln Southeast to the 2021 State Tournament. Tran plans to attend the University of Nebraska and study Pre-Medicine.
Emanuel “Wawa” Palga – Midfielder, Omaha South – One of the most interesting final games of a high school player’s career did not stop Wawa Palga from earning his proper place in the LJS Super State First Team and the Class A All State Team. Palga also earned the prestigious award of captain of OWH All Nebraska First Team, and was named to the Class A and Metro first teams. Wawa was one of the most entertaining players to watch in Nebraska Boys Soccer this year, stacking up 11 goals and 5 assists while dazzling fans with his skill and speed on the ball. He is awaiting a D1 offer to play college soccer at the next level.
Kevin Becerril – Forward, Omaha South – Kevin Becerril led the front-line for the State Champion and nationally ranked Omaha South Packers. Becerril combined consistent finishing skill with solid hold-up play to finish top in the state in goals, and second in the state in points. Becerril’s performances netted him a spot on the LJS Super State First team, OWH All Nebraska 1st team, OWH First team all-Metro, as well as the Class A All State team.
Luis Garcia – Midfielder, Omaha South – Luis Garcia was a consistent performer for the State Champion Packers. While he didn’t necessarily stack up the state-wide accolades (apart from his Class A Honorable Mention and Second Team All-Metro), he played an important midfield role for Omaha South. He had 4 player of the game performances for Omaha South this season.
David Rojas – Midfielder, Omaha South – Rojas was my player to watch for the Packers before the State Championship game, and he ended up scoring a goal. Rojas was an unsung player for the Packers for most of the season, but he had clutch moments when it mattered including earlier in the season versus Creighton Prep. Rojas was a Class A Honorable Mention.
Ian Krenzer – Goalkeeper, Creighton Prep – Krenzer captained the Junior Jays to a 2021 State Semifinal appearance, and earned a spot as a LJS and OWH Class A Honorable Mention. 4.1 GPA, and missed only a couple games due to injury. Krenzer plays club soccer for NFC, and plans to continue his education at University of Nebraska Lincoln for business.
Tristan Rainey – Defender, Omaha Northwest – LJS and OWH Class A All-State Honorable Mention.
Peyton Hylok – Defender, Papillion La Vista South – Hylok made his mark this season as a LJS and OWH Class A Honorable Mention and Co-Captain of Papillion La Vista South Boys Soccer. Hylok is heading to the Kansas City area to continue his education and soccer career at Johnson County Community College.
Collin Manzano – Forward, North Platte – Manzano, the Southeast Community College soccer commit, scored 3 goals and dished out 6 assists for the North Platte Bulldogs.
Ian Becerra – Midfielder, Lincoln High – Becerra was a Class A All-State Selection by the Lincoln Journal Star and Omaha World Herald. This Spring, Becerra scored 9 goals and notched 5 assists. Becerra is continuing his education and soccer career at Santa Rosa Junior College in California. Along with being a stand out 4 year soccer player, Ian was also a four year letterwinner in Cross Country.
Chance Hergott – Defender, Papillion La Vista South – Chance Hergott made the most of his senior season earning Academic All-State, as well as LJS and OWH All State Honorable Mention honors. The athletic and talented left back is heading to Truman State University where he will study in business and compete for their soccer team.
Caden Tubaugh – Forward, Millard West – Tubaugh had a solid sophomore season, earning OWH Class A All State Honorable Mention, but his 2020-2021 year will be one for the books. In 2020, Tubaugh won a State Cup with Gretna Elite Academy and committed his future to nationally-ranked NCAA Division II Maryville University. This Spring, The 6’1” Tubaugh tallied 11 goals and 12 assists and played nearly every minute of every match, leading Millard West to a State Tournament appearance (where he netted against champions Omaha South in a losing effort). He picked up postseason awards galore, including but not limited to LJS Super State, LJS Class A All State, OWH All Nebraska First team, OWH All-Metro first team, and Millard West Boys MVP.
Arturo Castro – Forward, Norfolk – LJS Class A All-State Honorable Mention. Castro tallied 5 goals and 3 assists this season for the Panthers.
Jeff Sumaili – Midfielder, Omaha Burke – Sumaili netted 5 goals and 7 assists for the Burke Bulldogs, en route to LJS and OWH Class A All-State Honorable Mentions.
Ryan Brakke – Midfielder, Creighton Prep – Ryan Brakke, an LJS First Team Super State, OWH Class A First Team, OWH All Nebraska Second Team, and OWH All-Metro selection, helped lead the Junior Jays to a semifinal appearance in this spring’s state tournament. Cited by his coach as both a tremendous leader and player, Brakke is staying in town and graduating from Junior Jay to Blue Jay. The midfield standout has committed his future to the Creighton University soccer team. Brakke plays club soccer for Sporting Omaha FC.
Soe She – Forward, Lincoln High – Soe is a young player who has persevered through some great adversity. A Karen refugee, who lost his father at a young age, Soe She will be the first of his family to attend college when he attends Southeast Community College this Fall. He plans to pursue a degree in electromechanical engineering. Soe She is a talented soccer player, kind-hearted person, and always has a great attitude despite the challenges he has had to face. We want to thank Janet Scott for sharing Soe’s story with us.
Anthony Acosta – Midfield, Grand Island – The midfielder from Grand Island helped lead his team to a State Tournament berth. Next year, Acosta will continue his education and his soccer career at Dakota Wesleyan. OWH Class A All State Honorable Mention
Caiden Lawn – Defender, Kearney – Defender Caiden Lawn was one of the veterans of a young Kearney Bearcat team. Lawn was named LJS and OWH Class A All State Honorable Mention and earned Academic All-State Honors.
Alex Eby – Defender, Papillion La Vista South – Eby was a 2021 OWH All-Nebraska, Class A, and all-Metro Second Team selection as well as being a LJS Class A All State Honorable Mention.
Cole Hoppe – Defender, Bellevue West – Cole Hoppe was named all-state honorable mention as both a Sophomore and a Senior. He was also named captain before the COVID-cancelled junior year and maintained that role for Bellevue West as a senior. Hope is an incredible student, earning Academic All-State as a senior, a #1 Class Rank at Bellevue West, and a spot in the Bellevue West 30+ ACT Club. He served as a DECA officer his junior and senior years. Hoppe has committed to William Jewell College, where he will continue his soccer career and his education. He plans to study Data Science and Statistics.
Martin Fuentes – Midfielder/Forward, Bellevue West – Fuentes was a 2021 LJS Class A All State Honorable Mention and a OWH All-Metro Second Team award winner.
Diego Salas – Forward, Grand Island – Salas, a LJS and OWH All State Honorable Mention, tallied 10 goals and 12 assists this season. He helped the Islanders to a berth in the 2021 State Tournament. Salas is continuing his academic and soccer career at Southeast Community College.
Nolan Fuelberth – Goalkeeper, Lincoln Southwest – 2021 Super State Selection by LJS and All Nebraska First Team Selection by OWH, Fuelberth made 72 saves and only allowed 7 goals. Nolan took Southwest to the brink of a State Championship game. A goalkeeper with many strengths, Fuelberth is committed to Division I Northern Illinois. Fuelberth was Nebraska Soccer Talk’s Class A Boys Player of the Year as well as the LJS player of the year and is one of the best players (if not the best) in the entire state.
Braden Lackey – Forward, Lincoln Southwest – Despite being surprisingly denied a spot on LJS’ Super State and OWH First teams, Lackey is one of the best goalscorers in the state earning all-state, all conference, and LSW golden boot honors. Lackey also named to the OWH All-Nebraska second team. The leading goal-scorer for Class A runner-ups Lincoln Southwest and the 3rd leading goalscorer in Class A, Lackey also showed he could be a provider, tallying 9 assists. Lackey’s combination of size and skill caused problems for every defensive unit that had to deal with him. Lackey completed a decorated youth and prep career where he succeeded at the high school, club, and ODP levels. He was a constant presence on the Nebraska ODP squad. He plays his club soccer for Gretna Elite Academy, where he was a part of the 2020 State Cup winning team and will travel to the Midwest Regional Championships this year. Braden is heading to Doane University next Fall, where he will continue his soccer career and his education.
Carter Hinman – Forward, Gretna – Carter Hinman had himself a senior year, with a great memory that it was probably his goal that led to the fence-breaking celebrations in Gretna’s district final. He notched 14 goals and 4 assists, as he helped Gretna to a semifinal finish in this year’s State Tournament. His personal and team success was rewarded with a spot on the LJS Super State Second Team, OWH All Nebraska First Team, OWH All-Metro first team, as well as the Class A Boys All-State Team. Carter is headed to Concordia (NE) University to continue his education and his soccer career.
Carter Novosad – Forward, Lincoln Southwest – Novosad, the 5’11” senior, was a part of the Class A Runners-up Lincoln Southwest. Novosad, who netted 5 goals and 3 assists this season, is committed to continuing his education and his college soccer career at Drury University.
Johnny Le – Midfielder/Defender, Lincoln Southwest – Le was a part of the Class A Runners-up Lincoln Southwest. He was a big contributor to what made the Lincoln side so difficult to score on all season. Le is committed to continuing his education and soccer career at Drury University.
Clayton Monroe – Goalkeeper, Lincoln Southwest – In case you were wondering how loaded Lincoln Southwest was at goalkeeper, Monroe was the backup behind Division I commit Nolan Fuelberth. Monroe, a Rockhurst University commitment himself, played his club soccer for Capital Soccer Association out of Lincoln.
Spencer Kaufman – Westside – The Westside Warrior and Sporting Omaha player is committed to continuing his education and soccer career at Concordia (NE) University.
Braeden Bestmann – Defender, Lincoln Southwest – Bestmann was a consistent and talented defensive presence for the Class A Runners Up, and he has been rewarded handsomely for his efforts. The Lincoln Southwest captain was named LJS First Team Super State, LJS First Team Class A, OWH All Nebraska Second Team, and OWH Class A First Team. Bestmann was also named Academic All-State.
Brage Sather-Larsen – Forward, Omaha Bryan – Sather-Larsen scored lots of goals and picked up lots of awards this year. The 15-goal scorer was named to the OWH Class A Second Team, OWH All-Metro First Team, OWH All-Nebraska Second Team, LJS Super State Second Team, and LJS Class A All-State. A fantastic season for the Bryan striker.
Payton King – Forward, Grand Island Northwest – King scored 5 goals and dished 2 assists this Spring. Helped GINW to a state tournament berth, named 2nd team all-conference in the Central Conference. King participated in the CCC and SONE showcases and is currently contemplating an offer from Mount Marty University Men’s Soccer to continue his soccer and academic careers.
Chace and I enjoyed covering high school soccer immensely this season and we can’t wait to do an even better job next Spring. We have been blessed to receive a little support from coaches and parents over the past two weeks, and we will thank them when the time is right, but we can also use more support. We will be coming out with a Patreon account this summer, but if you would like to get the ball rolling on your support now you can visit our Nebraska Soccer Talk Venmo: https://venmo.com/u/nebraska_talk.