Boys Soccer Season Comes to a Disappointing End


El Camino Real player (white) celebrating the victory over Birmingham in the City Championship Final

Johan Morales and Carlos Vega

Since the beginning of the season, the Birmingham soccer team has been under the microscope as they are coming off a spectacular championship season. The expectations were really high this year and the team did everything in their power to fulfill the expectations. Naturally, every champion is expected to go really far and even win the championship however this is no easy task.  The boys’ soccer team lost an emotional championship game against El Camino HS with a score of 2-1 in overtime. The team had to fight extremely hard in order to get back to the championship game; this time without the championship squad.

Many seniors graduated and other freshmen, sophomores and juniors came in to take their places. The challenge was not a new one for Coach E.B. Madha as he has been combining the experience of those who played for Birmingham before with the eagerness of new players coming in to the team.

The team needed some time to find the right combination of players who would go out and get the job done. This “building block” stage was evident at the beginning of the season as they only managed to break even with a 3-3 record. They lost two games to Granada Hills and one to El Camino Real. Despite these ups and downs, the team was able to get their act together and ride a nice three game winning streak going into the playoffs.

Birmingham faced Palisades in the first round of the playoffs and moved on to the quarterfinals against Granada Hills. The Patriots had lost against Granada in both games in the regular season so the stakes couldn’t have been higher. A third loss was not going to be acceptable and the Patriots were aware of this.  Birmingham came up with the 2-1 victory and made its way to the semifinal round.

At this point in the playoffs, the Patriots were hot! Six straight games without losing going into the City Semifinals to face last year’s championship opponent, Bell High School. The semifinal matchup was a really close game but Birmingham managed to come up with the 1-0 victory. Just like that, the team was right back where it finished last year, the City Championship game. This time, they would face longtime rival– El Camino Real.

The last game of the season was an emotional one to say the least. The field was full of excitement, tears, frustration, and nervousness combined. Unfortunately, the Patriots failed to take advantage of two key penalties. These missed penalties cost Birmingham the game and led to an overtime 2-1 El Camino victory. The Patriots congratulated El Camino and then left the field with a few tears on their faces. This loss was a hard one and marked the end of the 2015 boys’ soccer season.