Gabe Kellman lays out his team’s goals for the rest of this soccer season – which really kicks off tonight (Oct. 20) in Dexter. Kellman’s goals go something like this: win Districts, win Regionals, win States – that’s THREE big wins.
The Skyline senior doesn’t just lay them out, he believes each one is very attainable if the Eagles just play their game and up to their ability.
And why not, the Skyline soccer program did exactly that a few years ago. There is a blueprint already in place, designed by coach Chris Morgan, that if the Eagles follow can land them the top spot in high school soccer.
“We’re an experienced team with 17 seniors and we’re all very hungry to win a ring,” says Kellman, who already has one ring – he was on that Skyline state championship team as a sophomore. “We have a great group of guys this year and everyone gets along.”
The first win needs to come tonight against a very, very good Dexter team. There will be no easy games on this road to the goals laid out by Kellman. And don’t think he and his Skyline teammates don’t realize that.
“We’re prepared for our upcoming game against Dexter,” he says. “We’ve been working on a few things recently in practice, such as our shape and ball movement, and if we execute in Districts, then I don’t see anyone stopping us. The keys to our upcoming game is to play our brand of soccer and to not let the other team change our style of play.”
Kellman is not only one of three captains, along with Jake Carlson and Caleb Sauers, but an outstanding soccer player. And he has the resume to back it up.
He made the Skyline varsity team as a freshman and led the team in goals during their championship run as a sophomore.
Last year, as a junior, Kellman scored 14 goals, primarily from the attacking midfield position and also had a ton of assists. He made the All-District team the previous two years, was All-Region as a sophomore and All-SEC as a junior.
Kellman, who has 17 goals and 12 assists through 13 games this year from primarily the attacking center midfield position, also plays for the Michigan Jaguars 02 Green after playing club for the Michigan Wolves and Michigan Tigers.
It’s been a fun, hard-working and successful career on the pitch for the Skyline senior who first kicked a soccer ball with his older brothers.
“I joined my first travel team, the Michigan Tigers, in kindergarten or first grade,” he says. “When I first started playing I definitely most liked the competitiveness and team aspect of soccer. I had a bunch of friends who also played soccer so it was a lot of fun to be able to play with each other.”
Gabe, the son of Cindy Kellman and Scott Kellman, has also put up some impressive statistics in the classroom, including a 3.9 GPA. He also plays basketball and is a member of DECA, Student Action Senate and National Honor Society.
This year, however, has had a very different feel, and even perhaps more meaning, both in the “classroom” and on the pitch.
“I’m incredibly thankful that we are able to have a season,” Kellman says. “During the season the biggest changes have been wearing masks and not having any fans at our home games and limited fans at away games. I haven’t really minded the masks very much, but I wish we could have fans at home games.”
It’s been a strange and challenging and difficult year all the way around.
“This soccer season has obviously been much different than every other season,” Kellman says. “Over the summer we were not allowed to scrimmage like we usually do and that was devastating to us at the time. However, Coach Morgan made the most of it by getting Next Level Training to train us on the days we would usually scrimmage.
“Leading up to the season it was extremely frustrating because the announcement on whether we were able to have a season or not kept getting postponed. The hardest part of the uncertainty was staying positive, but we all did a good job of it and now here we are.”
Yes, here they are. In Dexter. Facing the Dreadnaughts and that first big challenge. Win Districts. Win Regionals. Win States. The first win hopefully comes tonight.