Meet the captains of winter athletics: Lauren Koyama

Bianca Al-Shamari, Author

As Palo Alto High School’s winter sports teams build chemistry and prepare for league play with vigor, the new captains of the soccer, wrestling and basketball teams enter the scene ready to take on the field, the floor and the court. Let’s meet the captains.

Girls’ Basketball

The girls’ team dominated leagues last year, posting an overall record of 19-8, en route to winning CCS.  After a 1st place finish in the CCS playoffs and a first round NorCal loss to Dublin High School Gaels, 55-49, in the first round of NorCals, the Palo Alto High School girls’ basketball team hopes to return to CCS finals.

Girls’ basketball does not elect official captains. Instead, seniors collectively lead as team-recognized captains, according to one of the senior varsity captains Lauren Koyama.

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Senior Lauren Koyama describes her beginnings in basketball, and the inspiration she drew from her sister. Koyama shares her goals for the upcoming season, and the important role her fellow teammates play in her life. Photo: Bianca Al-Shamari.

Meet Lauren Koyama. Koyama began playing for varsity her freshman year, and was named Most Valuable Player (MVP) her sophomore year.

LK: “My sister played basketball, and I wanted to follow in her footsteps,” Koyama said. “I made varsity my freshman year, and started games as a freshman. The four seniors that have been on the team since freshman year are the leaders of the team. In the beginning of the games we send up the underclass men as the captains, so the upperclassmen have more time to warm up.”

PV: What are you excited for this season?

LK: “This season I’m looking forward to being a main leader, and how the senior leadership [will] guide our team,” Koyama said. “We are really excited to hopefully redeem ourselves against Los Gatos since we lost two games against them last year, including senior night.”

According to Koyama, she is looking into the possibility of playing in college and will miss her Paly team upon graduation.

LK: “I will miss my team the most after graduation. We have created a family bond, and I will never have such a close team again in my life.”

To meet more Paly winter sport captains, click one of the links below:

Girls’ Basketball: Skylar Burris

Girl’s Soccer: Emily Tomz

Girls’ Soccer: Natalie Maloney

Wrestling: Sara Aguilar

Wrestling: Seth Goyal

Boys’ Basketball: Miles Tention

Boys’ Soccer: Derek Schoenberger

Boy’s Soccer: Neil Verwillow

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