MSMS soccer players reflect on historic season


Megan Bean

Senior Jeremy Padilla (right) battles with a Booneville player during a game.

Mariane Powell, Staff Writer

The MSMS 2022-2023 soccer season came to a close on Jan. 27 when the Frazer team lost to St. Andrews in the playoffs after the Goen team’s district exit a few weeks prior.

The loss marked the end of a historic year, with the Frazer team setting a record for the farthest an MSMS soccer team has gone in playoffs. 

“Going into the season, I didn’t think that we would be able to beat St. Andrews just because of the nature of their team, but we actually did better against them than last year. We got to the third round, so I was pretty happy,” senior Jeremy Dawe said. 

“I didn’t expect us to even make the playoffs this year,” senior Sawyer Levenson added. “We lost the backbone of the team, Nicholas Djedjos, last year, but all the seniors this year stepped up and brought the team together.”

Despite facing challenges this season, senior Jay DeOchoa said the Goen team managed to create a supportive community.

“A thing that we had trouble with was getting each other hyped. It was very easy for us to let each other get down,” DeOchoa said. “Soccer is all about working together, and I think that is something we were able to get good at.”

Senior Claire Ellison said they “always kept a positive attitude” and remembered “this is a math and science school, and we don’t have as much time as everyone else [to practice].”

Players focused “on the community aspect of [the sport],” Ellison said.

Senior Quinn Boerner agreed and said the MSMS team is “so much more of a family” because the team’s bond was strengthened by the fact that players “just live a couple of floors separated from each other and can eat dinner together every night.”

“It’s almost like an entirely different culture here at MSMS,” senior Nicholas Popescu said.

Junior Ethan Liao attributed the team’s success to its seniors.

“They are definitely the core of our team. They will really be missed in terms of what they do for the team, but also, as people, they will definitely be missed because they really led and carried the team,” Liao said.

Junior Ella Jones said she is already excited for next year’s season and to fill the shoes Goen seniors are leaving behind.

“I’m looking forward to being able to be a leader like my captains were,” Jones said. “I’m really excited to be one of the seniors on the team who gets to encourage the team and make it better.” 

As for advice to the juniors, seniors from both teams said they believed players need to keep a holistic mindset on and off the field.

“Everyone likes to see people dribble and score free kicks from 30 yards out, but that’s not what makes a good player,” Dawe said.

“We may not have won a whole bunch, but I think we had an amazing attitude going into a game not knowing whether we would win or lose but still pushing to try to win,” Boerner added. 

Overall, players from both teams said they saw the season as a success.

“I didn’t really expect much, but this year I just decided to enjoy my time no matter how well we played,” DeOchoa said. “My main focus was to have fun, and I think I grew because of that attitude.”

“I think it was a nice way to tie up our last year,” Popescu added. “This was probably one of our last memories we’ll have here, so it was nice to spend it on the soccer field.”