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Westwood Horizon

The student news site of Westwood High School.

Westwood Horizon

The student news site of Westwood High School.

Westwood Horizon

JV Women’s Soccer Triumphs 4-0 Against Cedar Ridge

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  • Eyes on fixed on the ball, defender Ella Smith ’27 tries to maneuver around Raider defense to gain back possession. Smith played a crucial role in helping the Warriors keep the ball in the Raiders’ half.

  • Driving the ball up the field, center forward Lillyana Wells ’27 moves to push the ball to the Raiders’ goal. The Warriors made several attempts at the Raiders’ goal post throughout the game, with the Warriors quickly gaining a significant lead.

  • Beaming at their audience, the JV cheer team performs their routine. Concluding the basketball season, the team has plans to fully support soccer for the remainder of their season.

  • Blocking Raider offense from gaining the ball, midfielder Jaelynn Boto ’27 uses swift footwork to navigate the ball around the opponent. A part of the Warriors’ solid offense, Boto and her other teammates put aggressive pressure on the Raiders throughout the game.

  • Locked in on the ball, midfielder Giselle Garcia ’27 works to block Raider offense from gaining the ball. Warrior defense played a small but vital role in keeping the Raiders’ goal count to zero.

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Immersed in a series of aggressive, repeated attempts at the goal, the JV women’s soccer team was only stopped in their offensive onslaught against the Cedar Ridge Raiders by the buzzer, signaling the end of the game. Coming back full force after the three-day weekend to secure yet another victory under their belt, the Warriors won against the Raiders, 4-0 on Tuesday, Feb. 21, at the Warrior Bowl.

“I thought that we played really well [today],” Midfielder Jaelynn Boto ’27 said. “When we connect and communicate, we play a lot better and it was very positive today.”

A new and exciting guest to the teams’ game, the JV cheer team was also present as spectators to cheer on the players and offer valuable support from the sidelines.

“Basketball recently ended so now we’re putting full support into soccer, and this is our first game cheering for the girls,” Game Day Leader Cassie Trigg ‘26 said. “We’re just very excited and here to support. I think it’s always nice that we’re winning, but [overall] it’s just been a lot of fun to watch the game, and I love cheering [for the girls].”

Kicking off the game with both teams assuming a cautious attitude while they attempted to scope out the other team’s strengths and weaknesses, both the Warriors and Raiders started slow and calculated. Finding their footing soon after, the Warriors began to effectively communicate among their key players to drive the ball straight into the Raiders’ half, where they would keep it for the majority of the game.

“I really liked today’s game,” Defender Madeleine Ziegler ‘27 said. “It was really fun [and] I thought everyone was really passing together as a team and it was really good energy on the field.”

Although the Warriors were able to secure the ball deep in the Raiders’ half early on, a strong defense from the Raiders’ meant that stable possession evaded the Warriors and prevented them from gaining ground towards the goal. However, the Raiders’ found the Warriors’ offense a tough opponent, with the ball repeatedly driven out of bounds, giving the Warriors’ critical corner kicks that provided them with an upper hand over the opponent, and opportunity to shoot their first goal just a few moments later. At this point, establishing stable possession of the ball, the Warriors were close enough to the goal so that midfielder Giselle Garcia ‘27 could score the first goal of the night for the Warriors. Soon after, both teams abandoned ground play, instead shooting the ball straight into the air in order to gain ground.

“[The Raiders] were playing really high up, so we [were supposed] to dribble past but instead we kept kicking it over,” Boto said. “It was because the other team was playing a lot higher up than what we are used to, and normally they sit a little further back.”

Entering a more fast-paced portion of the game, the Warriors resumed their aggressive onslaught against the Raiders’ defense in order to secure yet another goal under their belt, bringing the score to 2-0. Immediately following the goal, the Warriors went right back on the attack, applying pressure on the Raiders’ defense. A series of Warrior attempts at the goal, however, were caught by the Raiders’ goalkeeper. Backed by their own goalkeeper offering consistent shouts of encouragement throughout the game, the Warriors didn’t lose their aggressive spirit and continued their energetic push to the Raiders goalpost. With both sides ramping up their respective offense and defense, the Raiders and Warriors were almost equally matched, with only the Warriors’ seamless teamwork and communication giving them the upper hand- eventually leading them to secure another goal just minutes later by center forward Payton Vopat ‘26.

“Honestly, I think us as a team, we work better when [the game] is fast paced,” Ziegler said. “I mean everyone is on their toes, and you’re really in your element.”

The fluid communication amongst the Warriors carried forward well into the second half of the game, with their final goal of the night being a result of a powerful kick by Boto to launch the ball deep into the Raiders’ half, leading to an assist by defender Mya Mitchell ‘26 and a shot into the goalpost by the Warriors. However, much of the second half consisted of the Warriors not only maintaining the ball in the Raiders’ half, but also shooting the ball into the goal where they’d supposedly score; the referee, however, believed otherwise. Calling offsides on numerous occasions, the referee proved to be a significant barrier to the Warriors’ desire to up their score further. Regardless, the Warriors ended the game with a safe 4-0 score, adding yet another win to their successful season.

“I think we grew as a team [through all these wins], because we have been playing a lot better and practices have been better,” Boto said. “[Even though] we thought it was going to be a little bit worse at the beginning of the year, now that we know how each other play and we trust each other, I think [the season’s] going to end pretty well.”

The JV women’s soccer team will return to take on the Stony Point Tigers at the Warrior Bowl on Friday, March 1.

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Aarya Kale
Aarya Kale, Reporter
Class of 2026 Hey! Besides being a passionate writer and photographer, I also happen to have a liking for all things cheese :) If I don’t happen to be eating some, I’m probably off reading a nice book or hanging out with my friends!

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