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The LEAP Student Blog

Sosna Araya, Kennedy Catholic: "RTS" Road to State

Author: Sosna Araya
Grade: Junior
School: Kennedy Catholic
Mascot: Lancers
League: NPSL
Classification: 4A

"RTS" Road to State
Starting high school as a Freshman seems scary enough but playing a sport with people that are older than you by 4 years made me a bit nervous. When I tried out for soccer freshman year, I made varsity and it was intimidating. I was one of two freshmen on the team. Also, there were 7 talented seniors and phenomenal sophomores to compete with for a starting position. Feeling a little unsettled, I felt a great relief because I knew the seniors well because they were in the same grade as my brother. The seniors knew how to make my other freshy friend and I feel welcomed and helped us progress our skills each practice through hard, fun work. At the end of the season, I was happy I made varsity, even if there was only one other person in my grade. I proceeded to make bonds with the upperclassmen and sophomores on my team.
Once the season began, we started off great. We scored a few goals per game, more goals for other games, but the most thrilling part was that we held a shutout for all our season games. After each game, I yearned to try to start the next one, but I knew that me, a freshman, competing with these unbelievably talented girls was going to be difficult. With a roster of 16 people, there would 5 people on the bench usually. There were 6 starting seniors, which meant 5 more spots, and I had to compete with the incredibly talented juniors and sophomores. Most games I didn’t start, and played a bit in them, but it was worth it because playing with the other girls on varsity helped strengthen my soccer skills.
“The Varsity Kennedy Soccer Girls Team won their league.” I was ecstatic. We beat our rival team, Tahoma, in league. Next up for us was playoffs, and I was nervous but also excited. We won enough of our playoff games to qualify for districts, so we took a road trip to Wenatchee for our first district game. I’ll never forget the experiences I felt on the road trip to Wenatchee. With this road trip, my coach decided to pull up several players from JV up to varsity, so now there were other freshman and some sophomores. I made bonds, connections, and just remember the vibes that day and night. We stayed in a hotel, and the next morning, we ate breakfast, and were off to our first district game; I was feeling so many mixed emotions. I was thrilled but afraid at the same time because I didn’t want to make any mistakes to disappoint my teammates because these next games were knockout. 
The first game was eventful. The first game of districts, our coach was wrongfully sent off the field with a yellow card, and I was extremely concerned, but had faith in my team. My faith put in the right place, payed off, because we won 1-0 versus the Wenatchee Panthers. It was time for the semi-finals of state for 4A soccer, and it was versus Central Valley. I’ll never forget this game because it hurt the most. We were so close to winning the championship, we had it in the grasp of our hands, but unfortunately, we lost our first ever game that whole run, and it was the semi-finals game. But we received 4th in state, which I’m proud of. As a freshman, that whole experience of going to state was a stunning journey, but I felt awful for the seniors then because they don’t get another chance like me to redo state. I empathized for them because I felt what the pain is like this year, when my team had our first playoff game.

From what I’ve learned, it’s always good to have a little competition in my life because it makes me want to do better, improve, and excel-not only in soccer but anything I do in life.

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