JV Boys Soccer OIA Champions After Taking Down Kapolei 1-0

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By Taylor Ann Ono
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(Photo courtesy of Nicholas Gaston (9)) The team won with a record of 1-0, making a comeback from their loss last season. Being OIA champions of this year gives returning members the motivation to defend and hold their title for the next upcoming season.

On Jan. 20, the junior varsity (JV) boys soccer team played against Kapolei High School, winning with a score of 1-0, making them the Oahu Interscholastic Association (OIA) champions. Striving to make a comeback from last seasons loss, the team had a chance to showcase extensive amounts of dedication and perseverance throughout the season.

“I feel relieved because going into the tournament I felt like we had (a) very strong (chance of) winning, so we worked hard the (entire) season. It just feels good that all of our work paid off,” expressed Freshman Nicholas Gaston. 

The win altered their perspectives on themselves, giving each of them newfound insight. “I’d say it’s like a dream to me, I’ve always wanted to be a part of a championship at school,” expressed Sophomore Mitchell Isobe, “It’s a lot, especially since this is my final year in JV. I get to represent my school and make Mililani proud about winning championships.” Gaston added, “Personally, it means a lot because I’ve been training year-round to try and, well, first, to make the team, and second, to win the championship is just like a cherry on top of the cake.”

Although the team works as one, each player grasped a different lesson that they will use in the future. “I learned hard work pays off, and teamwork makes the dream work,” said Gaston. “It (feels) really good to be a champion and I learned core values of being a leader and (a) teammate.” Isobe added, “This is just going to be a stepping stone that (teaches me) I should work harder in the future, so I can feel this joy and make the championships with varsity. Even (with) a great win this year, we should keep working and stay humble to ourselves.”

All of this could not be done without some sort of motivation, and for the JV team it came from the people around them. “(My sister inspires me.) She played for Mililani, she plays for college and that’s kind of a goal for me.  She’s a great student too, I try to be just like her,” stated Isobe. Gaston added, “My peers motivate me. I don’t want to let them down and I want to do my job,” added Gaston. “I’m grateful for, first of all, making the team and the best teammates I could ever ask for.”

The team has practiced and worked diligently to get to where they are now. “(Winning OIA’s) was satisfying, I knew we had a good team at the beginning of the season,” stated Assistant Coach Steven Mcgehee. “Just the group as a whole, I think this year especially, it shows that the JV could’ve made varsity. Also it’s a good character build up for the players that are on the JV. They all fought very hard and went through some tough games.”

All of the determination and hope that was put into this championship has made it even more worthwhile. While some of them may move on to varsity, those who are staying in JV are excited about defending their title next season.