COLLEGE BOUND — Rome Free Academy soccer players Matt Kahler, left, and Jadon Barton sign their letters to play Division III soccer. Kahler will be attending Nazareth College in the fall, majoring in history education. Barton will be attending Cazenovia College majoring in business management and entrepreneurship. Behind Kahler from left to right is RFA varsity soccer coach Chad Reese, George and Beth Kahler with Chris Carrier in the middle. Behind Barton are Amanda Barton and Jason Barton and coach Bill Metzler. (Sentinel photo by John Clifford)
Senior soccer standouts accomplish goal together
Having a best friend growing up is something special. Having your best friend be with you on the field for nearly a decade is something even better. Accomplishing one of your lifelong goals — along with your best friend — is a dream come true say a pair of area soccer standouts.
Rome Free Academy seniors Matt Kahler and Jadon Barton started playing soccer together as 4-year-olds at Lee Town Park.
The two signed their letters of intent on Wednesday to play college soccer at the Division III level. Kahler is headed to Nazareth College to play soccer and study history education. Barton is headed to Cazenovia College to play soccer and study business management and entrepreneurship.
“This is what we’ve dreamed about doing,” Kahler said. “We both actually thought about going to Caz, but when I looked at Nazareth, I liked it better.”
“It’s going to be really cool going head to head now,” Barton said.
The two have played soccer together since their pre-school days. This past season, the pair were named co-captains of the varsity soccer team for the Black Knights.
“We both wanted to be captains,” Kahler said. “We wanted to help some of the younger guys learn and we even had some kids make the team that didn’t think they were going to make the team.
“When we were named captains, it was a surreal feeling,” Barton said. “The whole season was very fun and enjoyable. I wouldn’t have wanted to play with a different group of guys, especially playing along side Matt.”
When both boys were asked about what made their season and time playing together so much fun, both responded with the chemistry that the pair shares.
“We just have great chemistry on the field together,” Kahler said. “We play really well together. It was great that we combined a couple times this season for some big goals to win important games.”
“We’ve played with each other from the beginning so now Matt knows my moves before I’m even going to do them,” Barton said. “We know each others moves so well that even a game of FIFA gets pretty heated.”
The pair said that they can take a lot away from RFA. “Coach (Chad) Reese helped me train, get into shape, and just get better every year,” Kahler said.
“RFA taught me everything that I know about leadership,” Barton said.