Girls varsity soccer expresses high hopes for season

Hoping to build on last year’s CCS quarterfinals finish, the girls soccer team plans to focus on improving team chemistry and assimilating new players for the upcoming season. 

Senior and co-captain Adelaide McCarter said last season’s team was comprised mostly of seniors, so she is excited to bond with the new underclassmen. 

“There are lots of new faces on varsity this year which is so exciting,” McCarter said. “I hope to help create a positive team environment where my teammates can have fun, try new things, and make friends.”

While a matter of inconvenience to some players, McCarter said early morning practices have helped bring the team together. 

“We practice bright and early which can be difficult to be motivated for, but we have so much fun,” McCarter said. “I really value the friendships I have made from soccer over the years and this is a space where others can do the same.”

Senior and co-captain Payton Anderson said she wants to focus on fostering a healthy team environment that will create a more cohesive unit and better team chemistry.

“Last season went well, and we made it to CCS,” Anderson said. “Our team had a strong bond that helped carry us throughout our season. I hope we are able to find that rhythm.”

Junior Alessandra Chandler, who moved up to varsity this year, said this season definitely has potential. 

“Practices have been going really well and everyone works hard,” Chandler said. “I think our team chemistry is amazing, and I am excited for us to play.”

As The Campanile was going to print, information came out that eight girls varsity and one junior varsity soccer player are currently ineligible to play for participating in a club soccer showcase in Mesa, Ariz. from Dec. 3-4, a violation of Santa Clara Valley Athletic League regulations. 

According to the 2022-23 SCVAL Soccer bylaws, “(All) winter athletes must have stopped participation in contests for a team outside of the school, in the same sport, by the Monday following Thanksgiving, if the player is to participate on the high school team.”

A sophomore who also only agreed to be interviewed anonymously said many players hope SCVAL will reconsider its decision after communicating with the club and school teams.

“I just hope nothing is set in stone and we can appeal the decision,” the sophomore said.

Athletic Director Jennifer Crane said the school acknowledges SCVAL’s decision and will try to let the suspended players participate in other capacities that do not go against SCVAL bylaws.

“What Paly can do to (show) support is to allow those affected by this rule to continue to be a part of the Paly girls soccer program with the exception of being able to play in any contests as identified by the SCVAL constitution,” Crane said. 

Editor’s note: All players were told to remain anonymous by their coach after interviewing. The team is currently under investigation. An update will be posted on thecampanile.org as more information is available.

Additional reporting by Rachel Feinstein, Gabriella Gulman and Tiffany He.