Girls take 2nd, boys take 3rd in Garces Holiday Soccer Festival
Each year the FC high school soccer teams travel to Bakersfield to compete in the Garces Holiday Soccer Festival tournament. This year, both the girls and boys teams felt optimistic about their chances going in and excited to play after heavy rains forced the tournament to be canceled last year.
Kicking off the tournament, both soccer teams left the campus at 11 a.m., Dec. 15. Arriving at Wonderful College Prep Academy (WCPA) for the first game, the girls warmed up to play first. They won 9-1 with five goals from freshman Rylee Schwab while the other four came from Bekah Micu, ‘20, Deborah Ingerson, ‘20, and Lilian Fuller, ‘19.
The boys team were determined to beat WCPA after being defeated by them just three days earlier, 2-1. The boys came out strong, scoring five goals in the first half. They won 5-2 with one goal each from Wesley Hinton, ’20, juniors Aaron LaCroix and Alexander Rurik, senior Nathan Mount and an own-goal from WCPA.
Freshman Ethan Castiglione shared his thoughts on the tournament after defeated WCPA.
“I think we have been doing pretty well,” Castiglione said. “We lost on tuesday to WCPA, but we came back yesterday and came out with a win so that felt really good. As a group we have been performing pretty well, there are some things we have to work on, so I think we can do better there, but overall I think we work great as a group.”
To celebrate their hard earned victories, both teams traditionally dine at John’s Incredible Pizza after their games. After, they drove to the hotel where both teams separately engaged in a white elephant gift exchange game.
The soccer teams awoke early the next morning and departed for their final two games of the tournament. The day started off rough as the girls lost, 9-2 to Orcutt Academy with Bekah Micu, ‘20, and Rylee Schwab, ‘21, scoring the two goals. The boys lost, 8-0, to Redwood JV.
Freshmen Rylee Schwab, ‘21, reflects on the weekend and their improved play.
“My favorite part of this weekend was getting to bond with the team and see how we played against a higher level of competition,” Schwab said. ”I think we played really well as a team and I felt like we were able to start getting the ball out wide and have better passing throughout the games. Although we have a lot to improve on, we are definitely making progress. As a freshman, I have to learn to play at a higher level and how to play with a whole new team. It’s exciting to play with a group of girls that are older that you.”
Following the first game losses, both teams aimed to rebound against Desert Christian. The girls took second place in their group with a 4-0 win with a goal from Jordan Mazzella, ‘21, Rylee Schwab, ‘21 and two from Bekah Micu, ‘20.
The FC and Desert Christian boys battled for third in their group. At halftime, FC led 2-0 with goals from freshman Lorenzo Fierro and junior Alexander Rurik. Desert Christian fought in the second half but fell short, only scoring one goal.
Head coach Matt Markarian switched from coaching the boys for over 20 years to the girls this year. Markarian shares his optimism for the future of the team.
“Coaching the girls is very different,” Markarian said. “Thankfully we have a great group of young ladies and they are very forgiving and easy to coach. I was very happy with how we performed. We need to continue to improve with positional play and if we can do that we will be very hard to beat. I loved how the girls played in each game, even after suffering some injuries and a tough loss we bounced back with a nice win and that showed some great character.”
At the end of the weekend, the girls took second in their group while the boys took third, both with a 2-1 record.
For more athletics, check out the Winter sports 2017-18 box scores. For more articles, read New Star Wars movie goes its own way. For past Feather articles about Garces, check out Garces Holiday Soccer Festival begins.
Alexander Rurik contributed to this article.@thefeather, Instagram @thefeatheronline and Facebook @thefeatheronline.
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