On Jan. 27, the MHS girls varsity soccer team won the OIA Championship against Kaiser High School with a win of 2-0, making this the third year in which they won the OIA championships. Completing the season with 13 wins and two losses, they ended strong at the OIA Championship game.
“It was a collective effort that required everyone playing solid defense, being prepared to perform when called upon and moral, emotional support of teammates,” said varsity girls soccer Coach Ray Akiona.
This win was achieved at the end of a successful season, with the team learning and growing closer throughout. “As a team we achieved many goals. A main one was being crowned OIA champs, however, on our road to become champs we were able to achieve other goals as well. For one, our bond and love for each other has become stronger. This love is reflected on the field and we never fail to take care of one another,” said mid-center Sophomore Meagan Tamashiro.
Both goals scored during the OIA Championship game were scored by Amber Gilbert, but were obtained with support from other team members. “For the second goal, she scored off of a free kick crossed in the air. The free kick only happened because one of our teammates (Tehani Furuta) was working hard which led to a foul. Then Karlin Wurlitzer was the one who took the free kick which led to Amber scoring the goal, so many people contributed to this score,” said team captain, center back, Senior Jodi Lille.
Many personal challenges were faced by the individual players. The team overcame the challenge of getting familiar and comfortable with her teammates, who, at the start, she didn’t know very well. “In the beginning I didn’t know a lot of our team and I didn’t know what they were capable of, but we became so close throughout the season and I have so much confidence in them. I believe in all of them and have faith that they will get things done when the time comes,” said Lille.
Another issue that came with playing on a new team was trying to find a way in which the team worked together, and having to figure it out was a challenge faced along the way. “In the beginning of our season, we were struggling because we didn’t have a formation that worked for us. But after experimenting with many formations, we finally found one that really suited us,” said Lille.
A major obstacle they faced as a whole was communication on the field and the lack of it. “The most challenging aspect about playing as a team is having everyone on the same page and being able to communicate well,” said Lille.
They not only wished to improve their communication, but wished to improve on the physical capabilities of the team, and they have already started working on it. “Our team is working on improving our physical condition and better communication on the field, we are unusually quiet on the field,” said Akinoa.
A goal shared throughout the team was striving to continue their now three year streak in the OIA Championships. “A goal as a team that we achieved was winning OIA’s and having everyone become really close to each other,” said Lille.
The girls strived to grow not only closer as a team, but to grow as an individual player as well. “This season my personal goal was to work hard to become a better player. I feel like I achieved this goal and being surrounded by teammates that worked hard helped with my goal,” said Tamashiro.
The third win in the row made a memorable experience for the team, and experiencing it with their friends and teammates made for an unforgettable one. “The most memorable part of winning OIA’s was how seeing how happy everyone was. We’ve been practicing 6 days a week for 3 months now, and it just made me so happy to see everyone smiling and enjoying the win because we deserved it,” said Lille.
The varsity girls took their victory and continued onto their States Championship on February 8.