Christopher Emerson, who is a captain and center midfielder for the Skyline Eagles, is hoping to end his senior season with a second consecutive state championship.
It’s a big goal but Emerson and the Eagles are familiar with what it takes to win a second title and the senior is well aware that every team on the schedule will be looking to knock off the defending champs.
Emerson’s aggressiveness, leadership, and quickness have made him a must-watch player for the Eagles, who are 11-1-5 on the season and just two wins away from another District title.
“I mean obviously our goal is to win the state championship,” said Emerson after his Eagles opened Districts with a win over rival Huron last Thursday. “For us to do that, I think we need to stop dribbling so much and get better at movement off the ball. That’s where we need to do better up front.”
The senior helped lead his team to a five-game and four-game winning streak this season. The Eagles defeated Groves, Huron, Monroe, Chelsea, and Bedford by a combined score of 24-4 to win five consecutive games.
Emerson is such a large part of the team because he impacts the offense and defense, as well as starting a lot of breaks by pushing the ball forward.
“I think looking up before I get the ball and knowing where I’m going with the ball is something I do well. Along with playing aggressively,” said Emerson. “One thing we can work on, especially for me is position off the ball. A lot of times I was caught back playing with five defenders. I need to be up with the attack, I don’t need to be back there defending. That’s something that I’m going to work on and do better in the next game.”
Emerson plays for Wolves during club season and he mentioned that it makes him a better player because he is forced to play different positions.
For Skyline, Emerson plays center midfielder but for Wolves, he plays wide back. He explained that playing two different positions can be difficult at times but he knows it pushes him to be more versatile.
Skyline head coach Chris Morgan said leadership is one of the things that helps make Emerson a special player:
“The things that I’ve seen from him is his leadership role,” said Morgan following the win over the River Rats. “I think that actually started last year back in the state finals. I mean he scored a beautiful goal but the leadership that he was showing and displaying just carried over into this season. He was named a captain a little less than midway through and that’s a testament to what he’s been doing on the field. The leadership, communication, and enthusiasm. It’s always been there, just for him to flourish is amazing.”
Emerson is hoping to continue playing soccer in college and he’s interested in Northwood, Oakland, and Western Michigan.
Before that, though, the Eagles will look to end the season with another state title.
“We’re really similar to last year, but I think we’re all really positive and we’re just trying to take it one game at a time like we did last year,” said Emerson.
The Eagles will face Pioneer in the District semifinals on Wednesday, Oct. 16 at Dexter High School.