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Cardinals soar past the Galileo Lions 5–0

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The Cardinals dominated the Galileo Lions 5–0 on Feb. 1 at Lowell. Photo by Christina Johnson

The younger Cardinals came out to the field with posters and balloons, celebrating the graduating seniors during the halftime. The Cardinals defeated the Galileo Lions 5–0 on Feb. 1 at Lowell.

The Cardinals started the game with seven offensive players and four defensive players. Their focus on offense paid off, with senior defender Mackenzie Wong scoring the first goal within four minutes of the game. A minute passed, and senior co-captain and defender Xenia Defeminis scored the second goal of the game. Eight minutes after the second goal, senior forward Lyla Sax passed the ball to senior defender Eva Polanco- Gruszynski, who scored the third goal of the game. Later in the game, sophomore midfielder Iryne Chu scored, with an assist from sophomore forward Alexis Forer. Shortly after, junior forward Emma Tick-Raker made the final goal of the half and the game. The Cardinals led 5–0 by the end of the half.

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The Cardinals made interceptions between passes and combinations of long and short passes to increase the accuracy of passes, making it harder for the Lions to keep a strong defense. “We had to work to develop our own objectives and they achieved that in terms of controlling the ball, emphasizing passing the ball [and] deemphasizing scoring the goal,” head coach Gene Vrana said. Cardinal defenders often came up to the Lions’ side of the field to support the midfielders and also attempted to score. The versatility of the defense to function as both defense and offense contributed to their strong offense.

“We had to work to develop our own objectives and they achieved that in terms of controlling the ball, emphasizing passing the ball [and] deemphasizing scoring the goal.”

As the senior graduating players waited on the field during the halftime, the other players sneaked out and came back in with posters of their faces, candy necklaces, and balloons. As the younger Cardinals held up their arms, the seniors ran under the tunnel one by one. Vrana introduced the players to the spectators as they stood in front of them.

The seniors run under the arms of the younger Cardinals during the senior celebration. Photo by Christina Johnson

After the senior celebration ceremony, the Cardinals resumed the game, focused on maintaining their control of the game. The game continued to be played on the Lions’ side of the field, making endless attempts to score a goal. Recovering from the first half, the Lions began to focus on building a strong defense and began to block all of the Cardinals shots. The second half ended without any goals for both teams. The Cardinals ended the game with 5–0 victory.

Senior forward Lyla Sax dribbles the ball past the Galileo defenders. Photo by Christina Johnson

The Cardinals will face off against the Lincoln Mustangs at Lincoln High School at 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday.

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Cardinals soar past the Galileo Lions 5–0