LEROY — Third-year Pine River coach Jenny Hoaglund and her Pine River boys soccer squad face a tough challenge as the Bucks get ready for the season.

Practices began last week and Hoaglund has 14 on her roster. This Friday, the Bucks are at Northern Michigan Christian. The Bucks are scheduled to play home next Tuesday with NMC, one day later at  home with Clare. 

Hoaglund has several seniors on the team including six that are returning. That includes midfielder Colton Rawson and Erin Millen, defensive specialists Robyn Peppy, Zack Wagner and Cole Gingrich and offensive player Reese Lloyd. Christa Lukshaitis is a new senior player.

Douglas Connor, a sophomore, is set to be goalkeeper.

“It will be an interesting season,” Hoaglund said. “We have a lot work to do. All we can do is put our best foot forward.”

The schedule will be loaded with tough teams again. Pine River is home Sept. 4 with Big Rapids Crossroads Academy and home Sept. 11 with Houghton Lake. Other home games are Sept. 22 with Lakeview and Sept. 23 with Gladwin.

The Bucks will depend a lot on their seniors.

“We have to continue to progress, along with the underclassmen, so that we’re always looking forward,” Hoaglund said.