November 4, 2016

From the Eyes of a Goalie

Rebecca Landau ‘18

Typically, Golda Och Academy’s sports teams are seen as inferior in our conferences. Just a bunch of Jewish kids playing sports can’t be too good, right? But our team has more than that. Our team has heart.
As a goalie on the girl’s varsity soccer team, I am able to watch every moment of each game with incredible detail. What I have seen consistently from each game is an amazing team dynamic.
Every year there have been star players that help push our team to be better. In my three years on the team though, I have never seen all of these talents working so well together in order to reach our common goal: consistent winning. Through cheering for one another over each small success to pushing each other to work to our potential, we have managed to pull together an unbelievable season.
During pre-season, the team began with enough girls to field a full eleven starting players and then some. But as time went on, the roster lost key pieces. With multiple injuries, our team has been limited to a mere 12 players for the majority of the season. While this small number may have been unnerving at first, it has definitely pushed each individual to work harder in order to compensate for our lack of players.
It still astonishes me to watch my teammates outrun, outhustle and outplay teams that have rosters loaded with active players. Simply put, each player has such a strong need to not disappoint one another that nothing can stop us from getting the victory on any given day.
To help us reach those victories, seniors and captains Adi Brickman, Emily Binstein and Emily Blum take time before each game to remind the team to keep working hard until the final whistle blows; and that is exactly what we do. The sense of motivation that surges through each player the second the game starts is seen through each pass, tackle, save and goal made on the field.
Not only do our players’ hearts help us on the field, but head coach Robert Cohen has pointed us in the right direction since day one. Mr. Cohen has been able to put together a cohesive, effective line-up with such few players. It is no simple task, yet he has found a way.
With each player willing to platoon positions to help out, we have taken a subpar situation and made the best of it. It would have been easy to give up and accept that the odds were not in our favor, but that never crossed anyone’s mind. Having played soccer for many years on many different teams, there has never been such pride inside of me like there is for this team.
No matter our final record, the entire team feels accomplished with what we have made out of this year. With only a few weeks left in the season, our 9-2 record is a great feat that no one can take away from us. The moment I step onto the field each game, I feel so lucky to be a part of such an incredible team and family.

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