Undefeated for the past two years, Andover Girls JV Soccer prides itself on having a close-knit and spirited team dynamic. Allowing only four goals in five games this season, the team’s record currently stands at 4-0-1.
According to Co-Captains Hailey Wadell ’21 and Izzy Torio ’21, the team’s high energy and connectedness is what makes the program so successful.
“I think dynamic is what makes it fun. Everyone wants to just be there and play soccer, and that’s all we want to do. Izzy and I try to just have fun with it… Everyone’s committed,” said Wadell.
Torio wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “I’d say what is special about this team is that we are a team on and off the field… I know that when we walk on the field everybody is putting in their best effort and working hard, and that’s what makes playing on the team so much fun. It’s a very talented and enthusiastic group.”
This season, new players and a strong defense have greatly contributed to the team’s success. According to defender Ysabella Vargas ’23, communication on the field, especially among the defensive players, has helped her improve as a player.
“I think we all work as a team. We have more defensive players than we can actually put on the field, so all of us work together and we have a voice in the back and we yell at each other in a constructive way, providing feedback and helping each other grow as players,” said Vargas.
Vargas continued, “Everyone is just so nice and it’s a very helpful community. Everybody always provides really nice feedback, and it’s always constructive criticism, never anything really mean. Everyone’s working off each other. It’s been a good learning environment to help me improve as a soccer player.”
According to Wadell and two-year team member Sarah Karlen ’22, some unique traditions that help the team focus are rooted in enthusiasm.
“We have kind of a far field for practice, which is kind of a disadvantage, but it’s also really good because we are so isolated, so it’s not really like a mixed bunch of teams out in Siberia practicing together. It’s just us behind Isham practicing as one team, and so I think that kind of helps. I bring music to every practice and we goof around, we dance. While we do our laps for warm up I carry the speaker and we sing,” said Wadell.
Karlen wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “One of our traditions is to do these screaming sprints when we have a home game. We set up in two lines and when the coach says go, we just let our energy and nerves out in a screaming sprint for two seconds. It’s fun and it also intimidates the other team. They are usually very confused as to what is going on.”
The team hopes to remain undefeated for the rest of the season, and to also secure a win against Phillips Exeter Academy.
“We were undefeated last year and we ended up tying Exeter 1-1 in one of our games. So I think we definitely have our eyes on beating Exeter this year. I think we can stay undefeated because we did it last year. We have a really good program and a lot of good girls this year,” said Wadell.
Editor’s note: Hailey Wadell is an Associate Copy Editor for The Phillipian.