SUMMIT, NJ - Just over 48 hours removed from their state championship-winning performance, the Millburn High School Boys Soccer team got a chance to reflect on their incredible season at the annual end-of-season team banquet.
As part of the celebration, the three teams of players in the Freshman, Junior Varsity and Varsity all gathered to recap the season and meet together one last time.
Team awards were presented, and a highlight reel of each team's season played on the TV monitors behind the podium. Additionally, players, parents and boosters all took one final chance to savor the feeling of the championship in the moment.
For Millburn Varsity head Coach Jason Robinson, the team's success this year was extra sweet, with Millburn having lost the year before in the state final. In particular, Robinson cited a two-game stretch that he said helped his 2019 team prepare for the rigors of a return to the championship game.
"We got thumped by Montclair, [and] we played really well against Caldwell but lost," Robinson said "And that kind of showed them that in a one and done situation, this could be bad and our goal is to win states...both of those games were helpful.
"And then just to see them really kind of come together and fight together and learn from both of those losses...and just to kind of put all of that newly-acquired knowledge in such a short time. I'm pretty proud of them and excited for them. They get the whole rest of the school year to be state champs."
When interviewed by TAPinto at the banquet, varsity co-captains Alex Migoya and Rory McLaughlin said that the feeling of being state champs has begun to sink in.
As Migoya noted in his interview, the most important thing for him from this season was not only the accolades, but the bonds he made with the rest of the squad.
"Right now we all have a very special relationship," Migoya said. "We've been through so much together and I don't think anything can break our bonds. These 26 guys are people I'll never forget in my entire life."
McLaughlin said that Migoya was on the nose about being teammates, and if the next class of Millburn seniors can bond, the future of the program is bright.
"It's not gonna be easy," McLaughlin said. "As most people know, it's very difficult to defend a championship trophy. I'm glad we could do it this year. It's been a four-year journey, very difficult, but like Alex said before, it's just 'can we stay together.' if we're able to stay together, we can do anything we want."