Seniors lead boys soccer team to great season


Noah Gross

After an undefeated regular season and a 4-1 win against Cardozo in the DCIAA finals, Wilson Soccer was seeded first going into the DCSAA tournament.

To start off the playoffs, Wilson beat a strong Maret team 4-2, thanks to a phenomenal performance from Tony Zelaya, who scored twice.

Two days later Wilson faced Gonzaga in the semifinals and lost 3-1. Going into halftime the score was 0-0, but  in the 65th minute Gonzaga scored the first of their three goals within a ten minute period. Junior Kastriot Gjoka scored Wilson’s only goal of the game. He explained that, “the game got out of the control for ten minutes, and Gonzaga took advantage of that.” Wilson beat Gonzaga 1-0 in the beginning of the season, but in the DCSAA semifinals Gonzaga, “was more organized and had important players back from injury”

16 out of the 24 Wilson soccer players are seniors, so the majority of the team will not be returning next year. In addition to excellent leadership, Wilson will especially miss goalie Simon Birnstad and midfielder Eric Gwadz. In the regular season Birnstad only let in .27 goals per game, an incredible feat, and Gwadz was the team’s best passer, orchestrating the team’s offense. At the end of the season Gwadz was satisfied with winning the DCIAA championship and being regarded as the second best team in the DMV, but wishes they had won the state championship.

Despite the loss of the seniors, Gjoka is optimistic about what the team can do next year. Gjoka led Wilson with 11 goals on the season, so he will be leaned on heavily to lead the team on and off the field.  This season, Wilson reached unprecedented levels of success and will look to cement themselves as an elite high school soccer program next year.