RIVERSIDE: To the casual observer, closing out a season at 8-11-5 wouldn’t look like something to cheer about, but for Coach Dave Smith, the girls of King finished with quite a season.
In fact, they are 100% better than where they were 12 months ago and that is reason enough to celebrate. At just 4 wins in 2018, this season’s 8 was a victory in its own right.
The girls hosted Santiago for senior night and put in a great effort. Santiago led 2-0 at halftime and King cut the lead in half with an excellent goal from junior Channel Jimenez off of a great assist from Kyle Patterson. Santiago scored a late goal to make the final score 3-1.
The real story of the game was the honoring of our senior class. This was the last time on the field together for Brooke Bern, Andi Hanjie, Gillian Robles, Nicole Skaggs, Natalie Lara, Angela Saldana, Abby Najera, Sierra Slepicka, and Grace Roberts.
Coach Smith put it into an even bigger context. “With all of that had gone on with the program the last two years, it was great to see the girls come together as a team this year. I am thankful for the leadership of the seniors and am encouraged by the future of the girls program.”
Improvement is never measure merely by a score. Smith commented that at one point in the game he asked for two players to go in to give our defenders a break. “Abby Najera and Kennedy Hackbarth – both injured – responded together, ‘We’re ready!'”
“That’s what I am most proud of” Smith added. “The heart of every player and desire to help the team.”
Given what this team, this group of seniors have weathered, there is no better measurement of success than that.