AHS Boys Soccer Season RevisitedWednesday, March 07, 2012 By Kazbir Dhillon
The rapid growth of power that American High School has seen in its boy’s soccer program has been incredibly impressive to say the least. With five wins, five losses, and two draws, this year’s team has demolished season records made by American HS teams by ending the league in third place. Despite their superb performances this winter season, they were not able to achieve their ultimate goal of playing in NCS. As frustrating as it may be to be so close to achieving NCS for the first time in a long time and still not getting a spot, there are many positives that can be pulled from this year’s soccer season. The one major aspect of this school year’s team that separates them from their predecessors, is teamwork. Up until now, AHS have always had great individual players -many of which would go on to play for college- but they never played as a cohesive group. This year, AHS were great to watch when they were in full control of a game with their sharp, crisp passing and retaining possession; a result of Coach Losson working hard to make the team play like a team when he took over last year and Coach Al McKay retaining that practice this year. This great understanding and quick passing within the team is what helped AHS beat Washington twice with ease. The rise of one seemingly telepathic partnership between Francisco “Chino” Fonseca and Sergio “Pancho” Castillo have allowed AHS superb strength in the midfield. With these two great passers and a powerful Iyad Silmi to shrug off physical challenges from defenders, [King] Khanh Nguyen (AHS’s main striker) has been able to receive the ball enough to become the second top goal-scorer in the league with thirteen goals this season. Azrael Pillay and Krutarth Shah have consistently provided a reliable defence, and Philip Kwong, AHS’s main goal-keeper, was capable of rising to the occasion when called upon. He has pulled off fantastic saves throughout the season and was a stand-out player in American’s senior night game. With all the success this season, some might think that there could be a lack of it next year. There are eleven seniors on the varsity team that will be graduating this year which leaves a massive hole to be filled, but thankfully there is a full array of JV players and skillful lower-classmen currently on the varsity team to step in. “I think we can probably be third place minimum next year in MVALs,” said junior Gerardo Rodriguez, and possessing great players with ample potential such as Julio Lopez, Jose Gonzalez, and Waleed Silmi there should not be too much worry about who will inherit the varsity jersey next year.