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ISLANDERS EDGE DOLPHINS, WIN 4TH SOCCER TITLE IN A ROW

JFK caps of another undefeated season

By Paradis Jolie Fejerang

John F. Kennedy’s Islanders have won their fourth championship in a row after this year’s Interscholastic Girls High School Football League’s final game where the girls took on the Southern High Dolphins. The game ended with a final score of 2-1 with JFK’s senior captain Cassandra Kido winning the honor of Player of the Match. All this in the year both leagues re-unified back into a single league.

First Half

Wendy’s Player of the Game Cassandra Kido (photo by Dj Foster)

The Islanders got the kickoff, but the Tuninos were quick to steal the ball. Eagerly pressuring Islander goalkeeper Aedlene Olidan and throwing her off early in the game. With the Tuninos near getting a clear shot as their opposition’s GK ran out of the box with no reliance on her defenders, it was clear that the southside team was going to make the top-seeded Islanders work if they wanted to win the gold. 

Although JFK’s girls have been well-known to stand out as having the strongest passing game, Southern’s early aggression was visibly shaking them. Much of the first half for the Islanders consisted of a lot of kickball from defenders with blind hope that someone was going to get there.

Meanwhile, Southern was doing just enough to create multiple opportunities for the season’s MVP and Dolphin senior captain Analea Meno to rush down the field and take shots on goal. Meno kept the Islanders on their toes, as they would resort to poking at and pushing the breakaway midfielder that was just too fast for the green-and-gold defenders, which granted Meno and her team numerous free kicks and a couple corners that would turn out to be a touch too high above the crossbar. 

Despite Meno’s various impressive runs, JFK was the offensively stronger team. Luckily for Southern, their sophomore keeper, Keiviann Susuico, put in some extraordinary work to keep the ball out of her goal. The Dolphin keeper was almost successful in having a clean first half. It was not until seconds before the halftime whistle was blown that Islander Hana Flores was able to make the first shot of the game, positioning the ball precisely above the Southern GK’s reach as her fingers grazed the bottom of the ball before it landed at the back of the net. 

Second Half

Southern sophomore Miomi-Rose Blas and junior Cindy Maestrocampo were hot into the second run with multiple runs both straight down the center and on the left side of their field to get shots on the JFK goal, but none were successful thanks to the strength that is the Islanders’ four-person defensive lineup.

Nineteen minutes into the second half on the Southern side of the field, JFK’s Kido prepped herself to take a corner. In a beautiful moment of teamwork and communication between two captains, co-captain Jodee Halili placed herself right where Kido needed her to get up in the air for a goal-winning header and claim the second point of the game.

With the Dolphins refusing to give up the fight, they only seemed to make the winning team more antsy. The Islanders were pumping up their aggression as athletes faced injury and yellow cards on the field. Even JFK keeper Olidan was scrambling with her hands following Southern’s Blas as she played with the ball inside the box until the Islander defense came to save Olidan from losing a goal.

Ultimately, Southern’s Maestrocampo was able to secure a goal for the Dolphins with an assist from Meno just before the announcement that five minutes would be added to the playing time. With those extra five minutes, the Dolphins pumped up their attacking in the hopes of tying up the score but fell short to lose the game to the Islanders by just one point.

JFK’s Captains

Cassandra Kido and Jodee Halili have been integral parts of the Islanders’ win streak from all four years that they have been on the team. With a group of strong seniors who have been together since their winning freshman year, Kido and Halili take pride in their accomplishments and hope for only the best in their younger peers’ futures with the sport. 

It is thanks to these two that the Islander females have proven they are at the top of the game with discipline and communication. Controlling the field with good sportsmanship and full respect towards their coach, portraying ideal mentors for their underclassmen to look up to. 

Kido sees this close to her final year as a huge accomplishment. “We were just babies. We were just freshmen who entered out of COVID and we got here,” she reflects from the start of their line of championships to now. 

For Halili, working as a team is the most important part. Without being able to work together, she is unsure as to whether they would have been able to make it as far as they have. Even against the team with this year’s MVP, their teamwork outshined and outplayed Southern to take the gold. “They played really hard,” Halili notes about her competitors. “We had to step up because they were fighting.”

As for the future for their team, Halili hopes that they continue to work hard and continue the legacy. Following, Kido ends with her hopes that the team will continue on striving for better and simply be positive with wherever they go.

In the 3rd place game, the Guam High Panthers cruised to a 5-1 win over the Harvest Reagles.

PHOTO GALLERY BROUGHT TO BY:

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COMING SOON …

Guam National Bodybuilding Championship June 29

Father Duenas Alumni Basketball Tournament

Guam National Triathlon Championship July 14

QUICK HITS

Ryleen Mya Castro was named team MVP for the St. Mary’s College of California Women’s Rugby team in only her sophomore season. Castro is a 2022 graduate from Guam High.
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Coach Donan Cruz and the U.S. Men’s U21 National Team took home gold at the 2024 NORCECA Continental Championship with a 3-0 (25-18, 25-21, 27-25) win over Canada in Nogales, Mexico. The victory guaranteed the U.S. a spot in the 2025 FIVB U21 World Championship.

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