Jaguars Take Boys Soccer Championship After 36-Year Drought

415fchighsoccerAfter 36 years without, the Jaguars boys soccer team has brought home a Capitol Conference Championship to Falls Church High School.

The Jaguars faced off in the conference championship against the Wakefield High School Warriors on May 23. The Jaguars had lost to the Warriors in the regular season, 4-0. The Warriors had knocked out Mount Vernon and Thomas Jefferson to get to the finals, but the Jaguars were going to have to make a big change from their first face-off and work around several injuries that had occurred.

FCHS players Mario Duarte, Eynnar Claros, Henry Palencia, and Carlos Gutierrez were all injured shortly before the finals. But their teammates didn’t let this get them down. Despite being injured, Gutierrez still helped lead the team as he did throughout the season. Teammates Will Mejia and Leonardo Quiroga were also strong team leaders, encouraging their teammates not just throughout the season but in the grueling match-up for the championship. Rodrigo Maranon, Luis Lozano, Jesus Argote, and Armin Cordova helped fill the holes created from the injuries, coming in at a key time and giving a solid performance that resulted in what Head Coach Kris Benton calls a true team success story.

It was a battle between two teams that love to possess the ball. The tight match was 0-0 at halftime. After halftime, the Jaguars came out with a powerful punch early on in the second half. With new players stepping up, the Jaguars were able to maintain possession and punch in a goal early in the second half. Once they had the lead, the Jaguars fended off Wakefield attacks left and right and good defense allowed the Jaguars to hold onto their lead.