The student news site of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology


The student news site of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology


The student news site of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology


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Girls varsity soccer kicks their way into state tournament

Audrey Li
Working her way around multiple defenders, junior Anna Chau keeps the ball away from the opposing team while making her way to the goal. The players train weekly, even when they have two or more games a week. “During the regular season and even the preseason, we are working as hard as we can so that we can tone it down during the practices when all the games are like every other day,” Chau said.

After a long two-month regular season and month-long district tournament, the Jefferson girls’ soccer team took a 2-1 victory over South County High School on Wednesday, May 29 in the regional semi-final game. They made history as the first team in over 30 years to make it to the regional finals, which also qualifies them for the Virginia High School League (VHSL) state tournament. 

The team, who went undefeated in the regular season, was no stranger to the tough competition. Last year, the team fought hard and played all the way to district finals, only to unfortunately fall short of the title. 

“No one wants to know ‘oh, yeah, it’s our last game.’ So I think that on the field, we’re fighting to be able to play another [game] and to just keep on progressing in the tournament,” junior Anna Chau said. 

Watching one of the district playoff games at home in the stadium, the air is crisp and the setting sun casts a spotlight on the team. Any spectators watching the game will immediately notice the drive and fierceness of the players. Every single player, whether on the field or on the sidelines, is engaged. Shouts of motivation, warning and strategy mix with the referee’s whistle and the student section to create a competitive atmosphere. 

“Every time we play a team I see familiar faces from outside of high school because I play with them in club, so I’m like, ‘Oh, I really do want to compete against them and beat them,” Chau said. 

A special aspect of soccer is the connectivity of all players. Leagues like the Elite Clubs National League (ECNL) host multiple clubs in Northern Virginia, and much like Jefferson, is a “magnet” that brings players from all over the region together. Players who play on the same team in clubs find themselves on opposite sides of the midfield line under the bright school stadium lights. 

“It’s really exciting and such a high level of playing. There’s a lot of really good teams, and I just can’t wait for the next three years,” freshman Eva Sabol said. 

To players like Chau, those familiar faces act as a catalyst allowing her to run faster, attack harder, and perform better. In fact, in the regional game on Wednesday, she made a corner kick right into the goal, giving Jefferson the 2-1 lead that ultimately led them to victory. 

“Before that kick, there was another free kick that I took earlier in the game, and I actually hit the wall. My coach was like, ‘Are you sure you’re going to hit it in the goal this time?’ and I was like, ‘Yeah, don’t worry about it.’ It ended up going in, so that felt awesome,” Chau said.

With the exception of a few encouraging calls from the stands, the field is silent as the referee blows one long whistle. Chau raises her hand, and without even giving the opponents a chance to react, sends the ball into the net. The stands erupt into cheers and claps, and Chau is crushed by hugs from her teammates, running to celebrate her goal. This very friendship is what she believes has given the team their recent success, aside from the hard work and training put in daily. 

“My freshman year there were six or seven of us who came onto the varsity team freshman year, and so we’ve been together for a long time. We’ve all gotten really close with each other and we also gained two amazing freshmen,” Chau said. 

The team has a special bond, and as one of the two freshmen, Sabol shares a similar sentiment despite only having been on the team for one year. 

“I knew a lot of the girls on the team already before I came, and getting to know the other ones has been fun. They’re all really nice girls and I’ve loved being on the team,” Sabol said. 

As the Jefferson girls soccer team’s season comes to an end, they carry with them the spirit of unity and resilience that has brought them so far. Their journey is no mistake, in fact, it’s a testament to the power of teamwork and the training put in day in and day out. With their eyes set on an even more successful season next year, they are ready to kick their way towards that goal. 

“This year we’ve put together a really good squad and we’ve gotten the farthest we’ve ever gotten in a while. We really appreciate all the support we get,” Chau said. 


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