Junior midfielder and defender Joshua Yamamato kicks the ball around a Balboa Buccaneer on Feb. 13 at Lowell. Photo by Ciara Kosai
I n their last home game of the season, the varsity boys’ soccer team celebrated Senior Day with a 3–1 win against the Balboa Buccaneers on Feb. 13 at Lowell.
As per tradition, the team’s starting lineup was composed of all the senior players: defender Lucas Brenneman, midfielder Paul Lichtmacher, striker Razmig Makasdjian, defender Rene Santos, defender Kegan Woodhouse, and co-captains midfielder Kian Lonergan and defender Carlos Triqueros all took the field, alongside a handful of juniors.
Seventeen minutes into the game, Lowell was the first to score. Makasdjian sprinted up the left side of the field, dribbling past defenders, and shooting the ball past Balboa’s goalkeeper. The Cardinals’ defense kept the opponent at bay for the entirety of the first half, and entered their Senior Day festivities during halftime with the lead.
Senior midfielder Kian Lonergan dribbles the ball down the field. Photo by Ciara Kosai
As halftime began, head coach Juan Lopez addressed onlookers in the bleachers. He said Senior Day plays the role of “acknowledging and recognizing [the seniors’] hard work” and all they have contributed to the school’s soccer program for the past four years. Next, the underclassmen formed a bridge with their arms, which the seniors ran through individually as their names were announced and spectators applauded. The remainder of halftime was spent with the team taking group photos and briefly reviewing strategy.
In addition to the halftime celebration, underclassmen players presented their senior teammates with a variety of gifts. From bringing them breakfast and baked goods in registry, to decorating the sidelines with colorful posters and balloons. The underclassmen worked together to show their appreciation.
At the beginning of the second half, the Buccaneers found a hole in Lowell’s defense and scored, leaving the game tied. A minute later, freshly subbed-in sophomore forward Luis Soto kicked the ball across the face of the goal towards freshman forward Alejandro Palos, who kicked it into the bottom left of the goal. Lonergan dribbling down the right side of the field and passed it to junior forward Juan Tulio Martinez, who tapped the ball in. This goal solidified the Cardinals’s win 5 minutes before the game ended.
The Cards will be facing off against the Mission Bears at 3:30 p.m. on Feb. 20 at Mission High School.