You can’t mention Class 6A soccer and at the same time omit the Mustang Broncos from the conversation.
Now with 107 wins under his belt, Bronco coach Jared Homer has helped turn Mustang into a perineal power. And after reaching the state semifinals in four of the last five official seasons, including a state championship appearance last year, no program has been steadier.
“We’re on an upward trend,” Homer said. “We’ve been the best team as far as consistency over that time because we’ve found things that work and our players and staff have done a great job of implementing those things on and off the field.
“It was no more evident than when we showed up at Owasso earlier this year and there were 30 to 40 students in the stands on a Tuesday night for a scrimmage. It shows that we’ve earned the respect from everybody. It’s a big deal when you play Mustang and have success.”
The Broncos are off to another solid start in 2023 – already 5-1, including a 3-0 shutout win over Enid (2-2) at home on Tuesday night.
Three players tallied goals, which included assists from two teammates.
“It’s a big deal when you play Mustang and have success.”
-Jared Homer on the program’s status since 2017.
Aiden Hale (Fr.) gave Mustang a 1-0 lead in the first half off an assist from Ian Padilla (Jr.). Mung Mang (Sr.) and Preston Shultz (Sr.) iced the match with two scores in the second half, including an assist from Jake Rother (Jr.) on Mang’s goal.
The Broncos now boast wins over Jenks, Broken Arrow, Edison Prep (5A), and the Plainsmen – all teams that reached the state playoffs in 2022. They also defeated Canadian County rival Yukon 6-0 on Mach 7.
Mustang went 12-6 in 2022 before falling to Norman North in the state title match. They also nearly ran the table in 2021, going 17-0 before a loss to Broken Arrow in the semifinals.
The Broncos still have the same high expectations for 2023, but Homer says for the most part it will be a new group leading the way.
“We really only return about four starters from last year and those guys will be leaned on heavily as far as experience,” he said. “We also added about seven younger guys from last year that we are really comfortable with in filling those holes.
“We should be able to keep the ball rolling.”
The Broncos return a senior class of six, including Mang, an All-American last year and one of the top players in the state. Shultz joins him as one of the team’s veterans and will be relied upon at forward.
Samuel Badillo will help hold down one midfield position while Oscar Figueroa, Alejandro Velasco, and Kale Mix are expected to provide much needed depth and leadership.
“I’d say this year’s senior class is hungry,” Homer said. “We only have a few guys that were a part of that group last year, but now they’ve experienced and have seen all of the things that go into a state finals run. They’re ready to get to that point now that they’ve had a taste and a feel for it.”
Junior Jacob Ringo, who scored multiple goals in 2022, will play forward as well. Hale will also be one of the team’s top scoring threats as a freshman. Homer is excited about his potential over the next four years.
Aiden Jordan (So.) is back after a fantastic freshman campaign. Homer says both he and Badillo provide high soccer IQ and have a firm grasp on their roles.
Juniors Ashton Mullins and Dylan Leissner have converted to defenders and will help hold down the opponent’s side of the pitch. Both have worked to learn and buy into the position according to Homer and have done just fine through the first six matches. Rother is another player to watch at the outside back position.
Nolan Beller (So.) has been the team’s main keeper so far this season. He won a preseason battle for the position and will be the first non-senior in goal in the last few years. Ethan Connley (Jr.) has also seen playing time and will continue to be in the mix as well.
“These guys are a good group to be around,” Homer said. “They know what to expect and have put in the work to this point. We’re excited to see what happens and think we should be right up there again this year.”
The Broncos head to Norman on Thursday night for their final non-district match at Harve Collins Field. They return to the home pitch on March 28 to host U.S. Grant at 8 p.m.