In 1996, the Broadneck boys' soccer team finished 13-0 in the regular season. In 1990, current Broadneck coach Sean Tettemer played on the Bruins' regional champion team that went to the state finals.
Tettemer rarely speaks of either team, avoiding comparisons as he tries to help his 2005 team focus, not on the 8-0 record it's taking into its match against Old Mill tomorrow, but rather on improving in every game.
The Bruins, who entered the week ranked eighth in The Post, are playing much better soccer than last year, when they lost a key player -- Jay Huntley -- to injury early in the season and lost several overtime matches en route to a 5-9-1 record.
Losing Huntley "was a big hit to the offense and the team leadership," said senior Matt Peyton. "We still had him [on the sideline], but he couldn't lead by example."
This year some team members say the Bruins, with 11 seniors, have better chemistry, experience and leadership.
"We have a tremendous group of seniors that have been in the program and are providing leadership," said Tettemer.
Among them is Brendan O'Leary, who has five goals and four assists this season, including a late-game header off an assist from junior Alex Fernandez that gave the Bruins a 1-0 victory over Chesapeake on Friday night. But with 23 goals on the season, Broadneck is not a one-man squad. Eleven players have scored, including several of the sophomores on the team. That's not surprising since at least 18 players take the field in most games, Tettemer said.
"Anyone on the bench [to start the game] is keeping us up, and when they get on the field, they're making an impact," O'Leary said. "We're playing together and doing it for each other, not for ourselves."
Having depth on the bench "helps because we have 15 guys that can start," sophomore Jamie Flewellyn said. "If we need a break we have someone we can trust in that spot."
Tettemer said he doesn't plan to change anything for tomorrow's game against defending county champion Old Mill.
"Hopefully we can do some things to disturb their tempo and flow," Tettemer said. "I think it will be a good game, one of the better games to watch this year. Hopefully we can play up to that level."
Confidence should not be a factor going into the game. Then-No. 3 Old Mill lost to Arundel last week, two days after Broadneck beat Arundel, 3-1. But players acknowledge that may make Old Mill hungry for a win. And the Bruins have games coming up against South River, Bowie -- which made the 4A state tournament last year -- and Severna Park, which lost in the 3A state final last season.
Said O'Leary: "We're not scared of any opponent, but we respect all of them. We're confident we can play with any team in the state."