“We fought through it”

The boys soccer team ties with a score of 3-3 against Cardinal Newman.

Natalie Ryder, Photo Staffer

Vocal sophomore and central midfielder Larry Perez drops back to help the defenders. In addition to helping the defenders, midfielders are responsible for running up on an attacking play to help the ball travel forward. Even though Perez has played soccer since the age of six, he has found an interest off the field in creating hip hop music. “I’ve always had a huge passion for soccer,” Perez said. “Other than soccer, I play guitar and sing. I [spend] a lot of time on music, so one of my goals is to get recognized by people for my art.” (Natalie Ryder)
Chasing an opponent down the field, digital senior Thomas Ashley tries to steal the ball from Cardinal Newman. Despite tearing his ACL and LCL last year, Ashley was quick to get back into his position at center back or starting defensive mid. “That was tough last year, but I’m just looking forward to bouncing back this year and winning more games as a team,” Ashley said. “The team’s positive. We’ve been getting a lot better performances recently.” The team has tied their last two games and won the other two. (Natalie Ryder)
After a near goal, band junior Kenedy Lopez-Tzun returns to midfield in an attempt to win the ball back after the opponent’s keeper punts it. Lopez-Tzun started playing soccer when he was five years old, though stopped a few years ago. “I’m personally planning to get better because I stopped playing for a long time,” Lopez-Tzun said. “So for next season, I’m definitely trying to get better with the team. It’s a fun atmosphere and a lot of people support each other.” (Natalie Ryder)
With every team member involved in activities and events within their respective art area, players often have to miss practices or games, leaving the team short players. This has created a struggle between balancing arts and sports according to band senior Jonathan Tordi. “One thing that we have to deal with at Dreyfoos that a lot of schools don’t have to deal with is the fact that we are an art school and that we have performances and rehearsals,” Tordi said. “All this stuff prohibits us from having consistent practices and game schedules.” (Natalie Ryder)
Walking onto the field, vocal junior Nicolas Bolanos prepares for the game to begin. According to Bolanos, being on the soccer team takes a lot of hard work, commitment, and dedication. “We need more commitment from our players in order to beat these big schools because we’re playing schools with 4000 plus kids, not private schools,” Bolanos said. “The fact that we are still able to compete on their level is a testament to how good we are while only having a fraction of what they have.” (Natalie Ryder)
Jumping into the air to receive a goal kick, band senior Jonathan Tordi works towards accomplishing his many aspirations for his final soccer season. “My goal is to get out there and have fun, keep the generations of soccer players at Dreyfoos going, and make sure there is a strong group of leaders that is going to take over next year,” Tordi said. “The team is an imperative part of the high school experience. I know I look forward to it every year, and I want to keep that legacy going.” (Natalie Ryder)
Band junior Makens Joseph warms up before the game, preparing to play all around, a way for him to achieve his goal for this season: trying and deepening his understanding of every position. Makens has only played soccer a couple years in middle school. “Since I am not very experienced, it’s hard to understand where to go in an unfamiliar situation,” Joseph said. “There is a lot of pressure because your teammates want to win, but if you don’t understand what’s happening a lot of things can go wrong.” (Natalie Ryder)
At the game on Monday, Dec. 6, visual junior Sebastian Villar plays left back defender. His position required him to defend the net and take the ball back from the opposing team so they wouldn’t score. “Our attack was really good in the Monday game,” Villar said. “We made mistakes here and there, but we can still improve over time.” (Natalie Ryder)
Before the game, piano junior Joshua Lumaban and vocal junior Matthew Stenberg tried their hand at handstands, something they have been attempting to learn. After three years on the team, Lumaban has come to love the atmosphere. “Even though we are [all] at different skill levels, we find a good way to communicate with each other as a team,” Lumaban said. (Natalie Ryder)
During a free kick, vocal junior Matthew Stenberg runs past the other team’s defense to get the ball and score. Stenberg is the striker on the team and is therefore responsible for scoring goals. He has only played this position in the past couple of games and during his time as a club soccer player for Team Boca. (Natalie Ryder)
As the goalie, visual senior William Dhana is always ready to stop any shot from entering the goal. The game on Monday became especially difficult after being injured in the first quarter, along with other teammates. “The game was not a bad result on Monday. We got unlucky a couple times, but we also had really nice goals from our forwards and our attacking midfielders,” Dhana said. “We fought through [all of the injuries], and we were able to pull off a tie from a game that we lost badly the previous season.” (Natalie Ryder)