Fountain Valley 0, Temecula Valley 1
Temecula, CA — The contest between the visiting Fountain Valley Baron’s and your Golden Bears would be the last home game of the regular season. That designation carried with it the added bonus of being the Senior Game. The festivities began on a brisk Thursday evening after practice with our outgoing Senior class being presented with Senior Sash’s. Aaliyah Alawneh, Emma Hilbig, Randi Johnson and Skylar Richards represent our sports first multi student-athlete graduating class. The girls proudly displayed their Sash’s on campus Friday during school. Fast forward a bit to Friday evening. The energy on the field was electric. The Seniors and team completed their last regular season pregame warmup at home on schedule. The visiting Baron’s were still en route. With the added time cushion provided by the late arrival of Fountain Valley final preparations on the field and in the press box were being made for the Senior Night event. Our Master of Ceremonies would be none other than our JV Head Coach Angelica Maxwell-Perches. Angelica took charge in choreographing the Senior Night and made sure it was a smooth operation. With the field as our stage Seniors and their family members gathered behind the large inflatable Bear Cave Tunnel positioned mid-field on the 50 yard line. One by one a Senior player and her accompanying family walked through the Bear Cave Tunnel. Teammates lined the tunnel presenting flowers to the athlete and family as they exited the cave. Upon exiting the cave, over the loud speaker our MC announced the player and guest and played a prerecorded speech by the Seniors in their own voices with background music of their choice. As the speech played the athletes and family walked through a parade of raised field hockey sticks and banners held by the Varsity and Junior Varsity players. At the end of the walk the players and family posed for pictures to be taken by our team photographer Kellie Foster. Followed by a Senior Player and Family group picture. The event concluded without a hitch thanks to the planning and combined efforts of Angelica and the PSG. Meanwhile the visiting Baron’s still have not arrived. The waiting game continued… Fountain Valley would arrive an hour late after all was said and done. A quick 10 minute warmup and the game was set to begin. In what was to be the most pivotal game in our program, a lot was on the line tonight. Between Senior night and playoff aspirations the game against Fountain Valley represented a potential knockout game from the playoffs for the Golden Bears. Game on! All Seniors took to the field to start the game battling and setting the tone. The first score came from our Senior Co-Captains just over six minutes into the game. Skylar Richards to Randi Johnson cross backside post play for the score. Fountain Valley came roaring back right away pressuring for their own score in the following two minute period. The Golden Bear Defense rose to the occasion and repeatedly repelled each offensive strike. The remainder of the game bared witness to one of the best team passing performances ever in a game by the Bears. Passes were crisp, accurate and deliberate. It was beautiful to watch, poetry in motion. While there were many opportunities to score left on the field. The only score in the game persevered to the end. Strong team defense held Fountain Valley in check for the night. Ending the night with our defense playing keep away to run out the final moments of the game. The night was a success and bittersweet for our Senior Class. As we closeout the game the realization begins to hit. This is the last game in a Field Hockey Home Gold Uniform in front of loved ones for them. Thank you Seniors for the memories. There is still more work to be done our adventure is not over. Time to write out the final chapters in this storybook season our way.