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Early last fall, Legacy boys soccer coach Tony Romano stopped counting fouls against senior forward Tajon Buchanan.
Buchanan was so good that many opposing players figured the best way to slow the Canadian import was to foul him.
"On the field he drew a tremendous amount of attention," said Romano. "After like five games last season I stopped counting after he had 80 fouls against him in like the first third of the season.
"Teams realized there was nothing they could do to defend that kid other than knock him down. Given that fact, getting fouled relentlessly, he didn't get himself a lot of yellow cards."
Buchanan moved into the Legacy district from the Toronto area with a friend and his family. He wanted to play for the United States Development Academy but didn't get permission from U.S. soccer, so he played for Legacy.
Why soccer and not hockey was easy to answer, since Buchanan was recently named the Colorado Gatorade Boys Soccer Player of the Year. He is a finalist for the National Player of the Year award.
He led all Class 5A scorers with 21 goals and 52 points.
"I've been coaching soccer at the high school level for 20 years and hands down he's the best player I've ever coached," said Romano. "He might be the best player I've seen at the high school level in 20 years. He's truly amazing."
Buchanan, a hard worker on the pitch and in the classroom, has signed to play soccer at Syracuse. He has the speed, agility, endurance, ball skills and soccer sense to play a lot at the next level.
"He goes around defenders like they are just standing there," added Romano. "He is extremely deceptive. He'll make you go left when he's going right. He does it over and over and you even know it's coming and you can't do anything about it.
"If you had never seen him play, when he steps on the field and you watch him play for about 90 seconds, you say OK, that guy is at a whole another level than anyone else out there."
Perry steps down
Cherry Creek athletic director Jason Wilkins used twitter to announce that Bryan Perry is stepping down as the Bruins' boys lacrosse coach.
Perry guided the Bruins to their record sixth state title on May 20 with a win over Regis Jesuit.
He was the coach for five of Creek's title teams and has coached five state runner-up teams while compiling a 220-60 record in 15 years as Cherry Creek coach. He coached four seasons at Arapahoe before moving to Creek and has 258 career victories.
Major League Baseball draft
Major League Baseball scouts apparently aren't leery about drafting pitchers from Colorado.
Left-handed pitcher Lucas Gilbreath, a 2014 Legacy graduate who just completed his junior year at the University of Minnesota, heads a list of seven players from schools in the Colorado Community Media circulation area who were selected in the June 12-14 Major League Baseball draft.
Gilbreath, an All-Big Ten selection who went 5-2 with a 2.66 earned run average and struck out 92 batters in 81.1 innings, was a seventh-round selection of the Colorado Rockies and the 206th overall pick in the draft.
Right-handed pitcher Peyton Remy, who went to Legend and played at Central Arizona, was the 525th selection and picked by the Chicago Cubs in the 17th round.
Four players who graduated this spring from area schools were among the draftees and three were pitchers.
Rock Canyon right-handed pitcher Matt Given, who has signed with Xavier, was selected by Miami in the 20th round and Cleveland tabbed Heritage catcher Casey Opitz, an Arkansas commit, in the 27th round.
Jacob Hilton, a right-handed pitcher from Heritage who is committed to New Mexico, was a 28th round selection of the Texas Rangers, and the Rockies made Ralston Valley right-handed pitcher Drake Davis, an Arizona State commit, the draft's 1,136th pick when he was chosen in the 38th round.
Colorado High School Activities Association associate commissioner Tom Robinson and longtime Denver Christian basketball coach Dick Katte will receive National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) citations on July 1 at the NFHS summer meetings in Providence, Rhode Island.
Jim Benton is a sports writer for Colorado Community Media. He has been covering sports in the Denver area since 1968. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 303-566-4083.
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