Varsity boys soccer is one of the most promising winter sports this year with many returning starters and new members to the team.
After tryouts in October and November, the team played its 1st game against Menlo High School on Saturday, November 22, winning 3-1. However, after a 2-0 start to the season, they lost their next two games to Oak Grove and Pajaro High Schools. Despite those two losses, the team had a strong game against Pioneer in which it won 5-0.
The team tied Fremont 1-1 during their first home game on Thursday, December 11. So far, all of the games have not been league play but rather exhibitions and tournament matches.
“We aren’t too worried about the tournaments,” forward senior Kevin Bell said. “We are really focusing on winning league.”
According to Kevin, the team has been missing eight of its starters due to a club tournament in San Diego. Kevin himself has injured his knee and cannot play for three weeks. If he were to play, he would be one of the team’s starting forwards.
“We have a lot of returning starters and we’re in a lower league, so we should probably do pretty well,” defender senior Andy Moore said.
According to Andy, tryouts did not involve many cuts, so the team could focus on working together and preparing for its first game.
The formation for the team this year is a 3-4-3, meaning three defenders, four midfielders and three offenders, along with one goalie.
Team captain and center midfielder senior James Sweetman agrees with Andy and believes the team will do well this year.
“We expect to win league and do decently well in CCS,” James said.
James was unable to play for the school until he finished playing in nationals with his club team, Santa Clara Sporting for U17. He also played in Dallas for the US Youth National League. According to James, the team only lost three contributing seniors, so they should have a similar roster to the one last year.
Coach Vava Marques is very optimistic about the season.
“We are different than last year,” Marques said. “We have more players that have played year-round. Everyone can play different positions; we aren’t as restricted. Our strength would have to be team mentality. We’re organized. We emphasize game plan, which ultimately leads to success and a win.”
In general, the team seems to also have a positive attitude for success this year.
“Up and down, we are solid,” Andy said.
The team is made up of many seniors and sophomores, but it has only one junior, Eric Safai, and one freshman, goalie Lucas Champenois.
Because the team is in a lower league, a victory in the championship would mean entry into CCS. But due to the league’s easier competition this year, the team is worried that it will not have had enough competitive opponents to prepare it for CCS.
Overall, the team is optimistic about the upcoming season and preparing for victory.