Girls’ soccer looks to win it all

Julia Asin and Saba Moussavian

Senior midfielder Katie Foug carries the ball forward into the Los Gatos half. Paly beat Los Gatos 2-0. Photo by George Lu
Senior midfielder Katie Foug carries the ball forward into the Los Gatos half. Paly beat Los Gatos 2-0 on Jan. 24. Photo by George Lu.

After defeating Santa Clara High School (8-4-4, 5-3-2), the only team to serve it a loss this season, today by a score of 9-2, the Palo Alto High School girls’ soccer team (14-1-0, 8-1-0) is tied for first in the De Anza League, leading the league in most goals scored and fewest goals allowed , according to Maxpreps.

The team is doing historically well. On Jan. 20, Paly beat Mountain View High School (12-3-0,7-1-0) for the first time since 2007 to move back into a tie for first place in the DAL.

Assistant Coach Eric Seedman said he feels the team is having a great season so far.

“If we can keep it up, it could be very special indeed,” Seedman said.

Seedman said he was impressed with the way the team handled its first setback of the loss to Santa Clara.

“The team got right back to work and cleaned up some of the details that led up to that setback,” Seedman said. “The players are very resilient. They didn’t let it get them down.”

Junior forward and defender Alison Lu also noted the team’s successful season but said there are a few things the team can do to reach its ultimate goal of winning the DAL and later the Central Coast Section finals.

“We’ve had many chances in front of the goal but haven’t been able to capitalize on those opportunities,” Lu said. “We’re just going to keep practicing and work on starting games off strong. We sometimes start off a bit lackadaisical and have a few moments in the beginning where we don’t have full control of the ball.”

Paly players currently lead the DAL in multiple categories, according to Maxpreps. Junior midfielder Jacey Pederson leads the DAL in goals with 20, while sophomore goalie Dhara Yu leads the league in fewest goals allowed per game, with an average of 0.4. The team as a whole has scored 55 goals, while only allowing seven.

Seedman noted the excellence of Pederson’s performance but also attributed the team’s success to a wide range of players, including Lu, senior Katie Foug and freshman Emily Tomz.

“One of our best attributes is our depth,” Seedman said. “We can put any player out on the field at any juncture and have confidence that they will more than hold their own. Most coaches don’t have that flexibility.”

With Maxpreps‘ standings placing the Vikings third in CCS, a playoff berth seems inevitable.

“Can we do it?” Seedman said. “Yes. Will we do it? Time will tell. We will need to stay healthy, and keep working hard.”

The Vikings’ next game is against Mountain View at 3:30 p.m. on Feb. 10 at Mountain View.