The KAIAC Kickoff home game against the KIS Phoenix on April 3 was an all-around success. The varsity girls soccer team marked a resounding win by scoring six goals, while the varsity boys soccer team drew 2:2. Dominating the game from the onset, the SIS girls used their energetic high tempo game to pressure opponents. Forward Grace Ganus (10) scored a hat trick, including a finely struck free kick in the 19th minute. The varsity boys soccer team had a tougher match, but managed to walk away with a draw. Interestingly, this was the first time HSSC arranged for the pep rally to be held outdoors. The event featured barbeque, D$Q dancers, and emcees from the Tiger Sports Council. The student body demonstrated their appreciation for the players’ efforts by cheering passionately and displaying their school spirit.
“This game was a big win for us,” said Lara Kim (11), varsity girls soccer athlete. “KIS is a strong team that always plays hard and we had two of our strongest players injured, but fortunately we were able to execute our game plan. We’re looking forward to our remaining games and hoping that our injured teammates make a speedy recovery. The varsity boys soccer team was also successful, because the KIS soccer team is known to be strong, but the boys drew against them.”
The varsity boys team struggled against KIS’s possession-based game, but kept the match competitive thanks to their tenacious team defending and the solid goalkeeping of Haanbi Kim (12). After conceding a goal in the 19th minute, the team brought the score even with an outstanding individual effort from inside the penalty box. The crowd erupted in cheers and maintained their intensity of support for the duration of the entire game, holding up signs decorated by the HSSC and calling out individual players’ names.
“The freshmen council was in charge of organizing the event,” said Sean Kim (9), HSSC grade-level representative. “This year’s KAIAC Kickoff was successful overall. It was the first time doing the event outside in the soccer field, so it was slightly hectic, but we prepared barbeque and created signs cheering for the SIS varsity soccer teams. There was definitely more school spirit this year than last year. However, this year’s turnout was not as high as we had hoped, so I definitely think more promotion of the event is necessary.”
The KAIAC Kickoff was a combined effort that benefited from the contribution of various student groups. In addition to the HSSC’s efforts, the dancers from D$Q further enlivened the event, encouraging more students to come and watch the games. The Tiger Sports Council emcees contributed to the event by organizing the pep rally and making sure that all of our varsity athletes were recognized.
“The pep rally was well-attended and it was nice to hold the event outside, as it transitioned smoothly to the games,” said Kendall Sadler, HSSC adviser. “Although not as many people attended the KAIAC Kickoff, overall, there was a good atmosphere. The tradition that we started last year of creating player posters was especially successful. Our school’s ribbon and the tiger face paint was also a unique way to show excitement and get people enthusiastic about the soccer games.”