KINGMAN - John Venenga, Kingman High School athletic director, has put a self-described soccer junkie in charge of the Bulldogs boys team this season. Former coach Kevin Wilkerson resigned at the end of last season, and now it's time for Tony Schlosser to try and lead Kingman to the state playoffs.
"I love it," Schlosser, 27, said. "Now I'm trying to teach the young ones. I've been in soccer every year since I was four. I just like to play."
Schlosser came to Kingman two years ago and works as a teacher's assistant in the Little Explorers program at the Early Learning Center at La Senita. He played all the way through high school and a season at Jamestown (N.Y.) Community College.
"I think he is going to communicate well with the kids," Venenga said. "He's coached some soccer, not a lot, and he played college soccer. He's going to be a good fit. He's enthusiastic and loves the sport."
This is Schlosser's first foray into coaching high school soccer. He did coach a couple of teams back in New York, and he has worked the sidelines for NAYSL and KYSL since he moved to Kingman.
When he's finished with the players at KHS, Schlosser wants them to know there is more soccer for them to play.
"I want to get them prepared to play at the next level once they graduate," the coach said. "I just want them to start realizing they can play at the next level."
Schlosser leads the Bulldogs for the first time on the pitch when KHS hosts Lee Williams on opening day at 6 p.m. Monday.