Boys’ soccer disappointed with a tie on their long-anticipated senior night

February 12, 2023 — by Anika Kapasi
Photo by Allison Tan
During practice, senior captain Dylan Sinton looks to find an open lane during their flying changes drill. 
Despite preseason success, the team has a 2-5-4 league record with one game remaining and feels they didn’t fully fulfill their potential.

At halftime on their Feb. 7 senior night game against Lynbrook, the boys’ soccer team was amped up: They were leading 1-0 after senior winger Luke Wheeler assisted senior winger Yuvraj Singh on a header in the last five minutes of the first half.

However, the Vikings quickly upset the Falcons’ momentum, scoring two goals. Later, senior striker and center back Gavin Wheeler scored an equalizer shot into the top right corner near the end of the second half and the score ended tied at 2-2.

“[Senior night] was a little underwhelming because we did end up tying and I thought we could have won,” senior captain and right back Dylan Sinton said. “We had some chances where we could have [scored] but I’m just glad it’s not a loss as it has been in previous years.”

As of Feb. 10, the team, coached by head coach Max Sterling and assistant coach Conner McGoldrick, is sixth in the El Camino league and will not make CCS. Their last game of the season was away at Los Gatos on Feb. 14 where the team expected to see positive results and hoped to “spoil [the rival school’s] senior night,” Sinton said. (The Falcon could not cover this game in the print edition because of printing deadlines.)

For Sinton, being a captain was an honor — with the opportunity to lead and encourage his team to perform their best, he did his best to boost morale on the field, during warm-ups or in pregame talks. 

However, even with the team’s strong chemistry, they often struggled to reset after a loss.

“As a team, whenever we lost a game, the disappointment turned into a snowball effect for the next games,” Sinton said. “I think we have pretty good chemistry, but sometimes we just lose passion and it ends up [hurting us].”

Senior goalkeeper Nathan Lim said that even though players went into games with a positive mentality, their string of losses at the beginning of the season derailed their chances.

“Out of all the other teams, we had the highest potential,” Lim said. “No other team [in the league] really had the [level of] talent that we had.”

He pointed out that if the Falcons put in players off the bench, they would have performed just as well as their starters. 

And for Lim, senior night was evermore important because it was his chance to play on the field, rather than need to stay in their net to be goalkeeper.

“I felt like my entire senior year was leading up to that game,” Lim said. “It was a little bittersweet because I was happy that I got to play on the field, but I wish I had gotten more opportunities [to do so].”

The season was mentally tougher than years before, as Lim’s first choice of position was not goalkeeper. He often felt that getting scored on was solely his fault during the season, but developed the mindset that even though he didn’t always want to play in the goal, he would do his best and push through to support his team when the starting whistle blows, no matter the condition.

Given a 3-2 preseason record, the Falcons’ overall season was a bit disappointing, especially for the seniors.

“I’m glad that injuries [to multiple players] weren’t as big of a problem like last year and we were all able to work with each other,” Lim said. “But honestly, I was just happy to spend my last season with all my friends because I had been playing with many of them since my freshman year.”

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