Girls’ Varsity Soccer Team Becomes a Family
Juliette Del Selva
March 14, 2011
Filed under Sports
Being a part of the this years’ Woodside High School Girls Varsity soccer team means supporting everyone in any way they can. Even the freshmen, who are new to the world of the competitive high school sports, need the support. Like a determined team, they do their best at all times and work hard to achieve their goals. From watching the girls practice and play together as a team, you can see that this will always be their legacy and it’s the future varsity teams’ jobs to uphold it.
Woodside’s soccer team is one of the best in the Bay Area, and usually goes to Central Coast Section (CCS) finals. Their real competition is St. Francis in Mountain View, which is widely known for having the best sports teams in the Bay Area, and possibly all of California. Woodside’s girls’ varsity team does superbly every year. Last year, the team dominated in semi-finals and finals, but lost in a great game against St. Francis in CCS. Like last year, their wins took them to CCS, unfortunately, they lost in the semi-finals and will not be continuing on.
While watching the team practice and play in the games, it is evident how much they want to win, and how much they deserve it by the determined,yet excited looks on their faces. From the older, more experienced soccer players giving the young and hopeful players advice, a distinct bond has formed between them; they have become a family. “We have a lot of team chemistry and spirit, and that makes us want to win our games and play well for each other,” says senior Caitlin Brandman, one of the three captains on the team. It’s like a dance they’ve practiced and perfected. When one moves one way, the other follows and knows exactly what to do. Even the freshmen, who all played on the same club soccer team, know every move of the dance.
Having five freshmen on varsity who have amazing soccer skills and experience playing with each other does not mean it’s all fun and games. “Being a freshman on varsity is difficult, just like it would be in any sport because you are a lot younger, less mature, and less experienced than everyone else,” confesses Lindsay Ringman, one of the five talented freshmen on the team. These new players have to prove that they are just as good as anyone else on the team, and that they do not let anyone get under their skin. However, the older and more experienced players “are all really nice, and they give us a lot of good advice,” Ringman continues proudly. Fortunately for the freshmen, this will help them in the future when they become captains and lead the team to another hopeful win in CCS. “Watching these girls overcome their fears of being on the varsity squad really helped me to put faith in them and realize that we would be a good team again,” concludes Taylor Duffner, another supportive captain of the team.
Although not everyone is a leader, everyone can lead if they truly try and let their leadership skills shine through. If everyone was the leader, there would be no one to lead, and there would only be chaos. To become a captain, you have to let your stellar qualities shine for the coach to see. However, being a captain does not mean you are the only one on the field. “I had to work hard and show superior leadership skills to be able to become captain,” Duffner claims. The captain leads the team through wins and losses, picks them up when they are down, and most importantly, does not give up on anyone or anything.“I’ve been more vocal and have helped the other players understand the game better and organize them on the field. This communication, inspiration, and leadership is what really made me captain,” declares Brandman. The coaches love to see players who show all of these great qualities to lead the team that will be crucially important in the future.
“Next year I am going to Tufts University in Boston, Massachusetts. I definitely plan to try out for the soccer team there and continue my soccer experience,” reveals Brandman. “I am going to play at UC Davis and I am getting a scholarship to go there. I’ve always wanted to go to Davis, so now that I’ll be able to play soccer there just makes it even better,” exclaims Duffner. As for Ringman, “I am not really sure yet. It has always been my dream to play professionally and in college, but just recently it has become reality. A few months ago I could not [have] even imagined where I am now. I think that wherever I do go to college, I will try out for the team. It all depends on how the next couple of years go in my soccer career.” Well, who would expect a ninth grader to know what they want to do when they go to college anyways? They have the world at their fingertips and a hopeful twinkle in their eye that says, “nothing is going to get in my way.”
“I think the team will continue to do well next year. Every year, senior players are lost and that leaves a lot of people feeling nervous, but there are always new players coming to fill the spots. That is what happened this year after losing six amazing seniors last year. Every player has become more experienced this season, and they will continue to get better,” assures Brandman. As to prove her point, Duffner agrees, “Next year the team will still be very good. After last year, I thought the team was going to go down hill because we lost so many amazing seniors. Even though we’re losing a lot of really good talent this year too, I feel like that won’t take away from the talent that we still have. The freshman will be more experienced and I know that they will lead this team to do many great things.” At the end of the day, the only thing that matters is that each player played their best. Winning isn’t everything, no matter how much someone wants it, or how much they truly deserve it.
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