The annual Mayor’s Cup commenced the weekend of Oct. 24 with the Malden High School girls varsity soccer team taking on the Melrose Lady Red Raiders at Pine Banks Park. Even though the team put in as much hard work and effort as possible, they fell short and lost 1-3. The team’s record stands at 6-9, but they still have a strong chance of making it to the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association State Tournament.
The team was led by a solid showing of handling skills and leadership by Senior captains Jacqueline Smith, Kristina Gilbert, Sabrina Barreto and Blue & Gold member Lucia Quesada-Nylen. Although they might have lost and did not get the outcome that they wanted, the girls still showed skill and finesse, rushing the ball up field multiple times, but unfortunately could not finish the job.
In the early first half of the game, the girls had a 1-0 lead that was soon diminished by a Melrose goal. Stellar defense by Smith kept the Lady Red Raiders at bay, the most that got done for the rest of the half was a couple of shots on net here and there. Sophomore Izabelly Barros had multiple rushes down field, with one shot going just a couple feet too far to the right. Freshman Jill Tramondozzi was also in the thick of things, constantly being down in the offensive zone with the ball. The first half ended with a score of 1-1, but even though the game was tied, the girls left for halftime energized and ready to take on the Lady Red Raiders and show them who is in charge.
The second half started with a Malden possession and then a quick drive by Malden, but alas they could not find the back of the net. The girls had multiple rushes down the field with the ball and still came up short, not that it was any fault of their own; Melrose had spectacular defense throughout the whole game, effectively shutting down the offensive pressure of Malden. Smith had a one-woman-circus show in the middle of the second half. As she was running across the field with the ball, she got tripped up and fell forward, rolling into a perfect somersault and emerging from it as if nothing had ever happened. Right afterwards though, Melrose marched down the field and scored, making the game 2-1. After that, the game was very back and forth, with no team having any real possession for longer than 30 seconds and then somehow, someway, Melrose was able to capitalize once again and make the game 3-1, ending any chance of winning.
Senior Zeina Greige explained how “even though we lost, [the] team did incredible." Greige felt that her team "worked hard, pushed [themselves] so much, and gave it everything [they] had.” Throughout the whole season, the girls have stuck together and fought together through thick and thin.
An earlier version of this article was titled "Girls Soccer: vs. Salem High School Witches" but the team faced the Melrose Lady Red Raiders.