MERRILLVILLE | What usually happens when a kid plays competitive soccer since fourth grade is that he learns to play a multitude of positions and when he gets older, he can learn to craft and mold one primary position.
This was the path of Andrean senior Mike Gore, but head coach Pete Reist had other plans.
Last year as a forward, Gore was one of the top scorers in the area with 18 goals and he added 10 assists, which landed him a First-Team All-Area spot.
This year, however, Gore will move to the midfield, taking over for Kyle Costa, who graduated.
When asked how he feels about switching positions after playing primarily at the forward spot throughout his high school career, Gore simply said he'll do anything to make the team better.
"I've played in a lot of different spots, so I'll do whatever he (Reist) needs me to do, he said.
With the loss of Costa and some others, it shouldn't hinder Andrean as much because it still has a lot coming back this year and with the position change of Gore, the team should have a little more offensive flexibility.
Fellow senior Mike Metlov will take over Gore's vacated position because Reist believes he has the talent to be a suitable replacement and because the Niners need a veteran to fill an important role.
"I look for Metlov to be one of the leading scorers in the area because he knows how to put the ball in the net," said Reist. "Gore's goal-scoring will take a hit, but he'll still provide more goals at center midfield."
The mindset for Gore will have to change drastically and he'll need to cover more ground than he's used to, which are both facts he knows and is willing to prepare for.
He's been more active this summer as opposed to doing other things that high schoolers typically do during their time off.
"I know I have to be in better shape for the season. I've been running on my own time and instead of playing FIFA '13, I would take my bike out and ride," Gore said.
"We actually started a Facebook group for the team and we would post and people would ask if anyone just wanted to go out and play."
The 59ers sported an impressive 13-2-3 record a season ago, but their most important loss came in last year's Bishop Noll sectional final against Michigan City Marquette last year in a shootout.
"We better not miss three penalty kicks next time, that's for sure," Reist said. "We've also been working on our man-to-man defense on restarts, which was a problem in that game."
Gore was one of the players who missed one of those kicks for the 59ers and he still remembers every piece of it to this day.
"I remember thinking that I could have done a little more that day and no matter how hard you try to re-create it in practice, it's just not the same," he said. "I use it as motivation now."