Girls soccer defeats La Mirada in CIF semi-finals

Hanna Suarez, Editor-in-Chief

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The varsity girls move ahead to the CIF finals after defeating the La Mirada Matadores on Tuesday Feb. 26 at the Allen Lane Stadium. For the many returning members of the team, this is their second chance at an opportunity to win a CIF title, and the athletes hope they can prove themselves champions once again.

The stadium was filled with excited teachers, students, coaches, and family members humming in anticipation as the game began. Seniors Francisco Gomez and Aria Givenchy painted jerseys onto their upper bodies and rallied the crowd to show their peers full support.

“I have a CIF ring and I wanted to return the love and support I received while I was on the [football] field,” Gomez said.

With the score board still unchanged by second half, Vikings drove the Matadores out of the field, preventing any room for a lead. In the first ten minutes of the second half, forward freshman Tara Kazima set the bar for success with a left-side goal.

Kazimi’s goal was exactly what the girls needed to remind them that they are champions and went on to score a second goal less than three minutes later.

Strength and conditioning consultant Ed Holt avidly supports the team from the sidelines, making sure they know he appreciates their sportsmanship and character.

“Athletes that I have [coached] don’t have this kind of heart,” Holt said. “These guys have hearts of champions.”

With 13:12 minutes remaining Kazimi scored her second goal for the Lady Vikings, ending the game at a victorious 3-0. Kazimi explains one thing which drove her to personal success.

“I thought of the [CIF] ring,” Kazimi said. “I want to win and get that ring.”

As the CIF title gets closer, the soccer players know to keep a positive attitude and remain focused.

“We can’t get over-confident,” senior center mid-field Krista Velasco said. “Winning isn’t just on a physical level; you need heart too.”

Coach Rachel Godfrey has been preparing her team all season for CIF and knows how they are capable of success on the field.

“It’s a combination of skill and heart,” Godfrey said. “These girls work so hard; they don’t believe anything is going to be handed to them.”

With the win aside, only one game stands in between the Lady Vikes and their goal. They gathered at the end of the game for a quick victory speech by Holt, ending with their favorite saying, “Not today!” They will be facing their final opponent on Saturday March 1 at Warren High School’s Justice Stadium.