6 stars: Varsity soccer seniors lead team to league title, playoffs


Photo credit: Rebecca Aranda

Archer varsity seniors, Rose Chuck, Greta Irvine, Sienna Ozar, Alyssa Ponrartana and Avery Weingarten smile after securing a win against Buckley to conclude their senior night.  The team won their league and went on to CIFs, where they lost in the second round.  

By Rose Sarner, Culture Editor

From November to February, soccer players flooded to the back field for practices and games. After winning their league, and being titled Liberty League Champions, the varsity soccer team traveled beyond the Los Angeles area for CIF playoffs. This year, the team was led by six seniors: Avery Weingarten, Alyssa Ponratona, Greta Irvine, Rose Chuck and Sienna Ozar. These seniors led the team to the second round of CIF playoffs, where they played against Fairmont Prep Academy in Irvine and ultimately lost 3-4.

Ozar is one of three captains on Archer’s varsity soccer team. Ozar stepped onto the field when she was in 10th grade and played as an offensive player for the varsity team. She started playing soccer when she was 5 and has been playing for LA Breakers FC, a youth club for soccer players in the Los Angeles area, for ten years.

“I think my role is to instill passion within my teammates, to be the best versions to inspire, uplift the team and to just lead us through games and practices,” Ozar said. “I want to make our team a real community beyond just teammates.”

Co-captain Chuck has been a member of Archer’s soccer program since seventh grade, making this year her fifth year as a starting defensive player. Although Chuck said she prefers playing defense, she frequently played forward this season. 

“This year, I feel more responsibility,” Chuck said. “Especially as a captain, I was very excited to display leadership skills such as encouraging my teammates and giving them the skills to prosper through the next couple years.” 

Junior Cate Childers is the only non-senior captain, and, according to Ozar, she is an integral member of the team. Ozar and Childers play club soccer together for LA Breakers FC in addition to being teammates on the varsity team. After school, they both practice at Archer for two hours and then head to club practice. Childers said that she admires Ozar not only, for her work on the field but also for her efforts off the field, which include her work ethic and academic life.

“I feel extremely honored to be a junior captain this season and both learn and collaborate with the seniors,” Childers said. “I am going to be able to use the skills they have taught me this season in the future and carry their legacy on.”

Throughout their season, the team competed in a total of 13 games and scrimmages and won eight of the matches. The team competed in scrimmages against both Division I and II teams and completed in the league against schools such as Buckley, YULA and Milken. Ozar said she has enjoyed playing against a wide variety of teams this year as every match offers a different opportunity to develop her skills. 

“Every match is a learning experience. Every game and every practice is an opportunity for us as players to develop new skills,” Ozar said. “Even the extremely hard matches that we lose, we are fighting, and the skills that those matches foster are ones we are able to become better players from.”

During senior night, the seniors led the team to a 13-0 win over Buckley, which secured them an undefeated season in league and their title as Liberty League Champions. After the game, celebrations included speeches from teammates, cardboard cutouts of each senior, purple and green ’23 beanies and donut and hot chocolate carts. 

Varsity soccer competed in their first round of CIF playoffs Feb. 8 against Windward School, earning a 3-0 victory. Childers scored the first goal off a cross from Chuck, and Chuck finished two more goals, assisted by Ozar and Childers. After advancing to the second round of playoffs, the team played against Fairmont Prep Academy in Irvine and lost 3-4. This match concluded the soccer season, and Chuck reflected on her last Archer season. 

“I feel so lucky every time I walk onto the field with my Archer team,” Chuck said. “I appreciate every member of the team — from their energy that makes me excited to play to their incredible skills that allow everyone to learn. We are one big family, and after I graduate I know I will always have my soccer family.”