For The Tribune
The Seymour Cyclones U11 soccer team has a seasoned veteran at the helm.
Following a tremendous run this summer, the team celebrated an undefeated season with state recognition.
The Cyclones defeated opponents including Carmel, Indy Premier, Columbus Express and Franklin Township in the season.
Coach John Lubia is in his fourth season working with the Cyclones U11.
On Aug. 20, Lubia proudly handed out plaques to each of his players commemorating state recognition for their unblemished spring season.
Lubia told the team that they can play soccer in college and perhaps even play professionally.
He said he knows from experience this can happen.
Not many U11 soccer teams can claim they have a former professional athlete as their head coach, and fewer teams can claim they just completed an undefeated season.
Lubia grew up in Uganda, where soccer is the No. 1 sport.
The coach loved playing soccer and cricket as a youth, but when he was afforded the opportunity to play cricket on Uganda’s national cricket team he accepted.
He was then given the chance to play professionally, which was his ticket to attend a university.
Lubia achieved masters degrees in computer science and in communication systems engineering.
He also does mission work in Uganda, where his local church built a building for worship and constructed a water well which serves three or four villages within a 3-mile radius.
The Cyclones finished with a 7-0-1 record.
Before the awards, with friends and family present, Lubia told his players that they can achieve what they want with hard work and a good attitude.
The squad listened attentively, as he continues to teach, motivate and encourage them for the upcoming fall season, which will begin soon.
“I am building the players for the future,” Lubia said. “I need to improve their technical and mental abilities to react to different needs of the game. I would like to see the team grow and play with more freedom and style.
“We have a style of play that we want to maintain and improve. We want to keep possession of the ball and pressure the opposition when we don’t have the ball.”
Lubia said that winning is what he wants to see, and so far his team has achieved just that.