On a beautiful day at Robert College on October 20 th , the IICS High School Girls football team blasted their way to victory in the annual ISL Championship. The girls won all four of their games and scored fifteen goals in the process, many of which were powerful shots from various directions and distances. At the other end of the field, a solid defensive performance prevented any of the opponents from scoring.
The day began with a game against MEF, probably the weakest team in the tournament. Ece opened the scoring after a few minutes, and this was followed by two goals from Mimi, one from Aleyna and a long-distance free-kick from Flo before the half-time whistle had blown.
With a five goal lead we experimented with players in different positions in the second half and cruised to victory.
The second game of the day was against the hosts, Robert College. IICS battered the Robert College goal for the first fifteen minutes but the ball just wouldn’t go in. Finally, team co-captain Mimi broke through the defense to put us ahead, and a few minutes later Aleyna rocketed a shot into the top of the net to give us a two-goal cushion at half-time. IICS kept control of the game in the second half and a long-distance lob from Nula went over the goalkeeper’s head into the net to give us a 3-0 win.
Game three was the key game of the tournament. Gateway were our strongest opponents on the day and, as always, they crowded the midfield and fought hard. Fortunately, Ece was able to pounce on a ball dropped by the Gateway goalkeeper early in the game to put us ahead. After that, the midfield war began and Kubra, Flo and Mimi battled bravely against countless Gateway midfielders. Towards the end of the half, Mimi again broke through and scored her fourth goal in three games to give us a 2-0 lead. The battle continued in the second half with no clear chances at either end until Gateway were awarded a late penalty for a hand-ball. Nula kept her eye on shot carefully, however, and was able to keep our spotless defensive record in place. A few minutes later the final whistle blew and the championship was almost in the bag.
All that was left to do was to see off the visitors from Ankara, Oasis. Clearly our girls had decided to finish the day’s business in style and a stunning first-half display left Oasis reeling from a five goal deficit. Nula was given freedom to attack from midfield and fired three goals in with Aleyna finishing off the other two. Once again, we were able to try some new things in the second half and protected the five goal lead. As the final whistle blew, our team was able to celebrate knowing that they had produced an awesome performance throughout the four games.
We seem to have plenty of options in our team this year. Nula and Kubra are terrific goalkeepers and strong midfielders. Solin, Maria, Ayla and Julia take care of the defensive duties. Flo and Mimi work with either Kubra or Nula in midfield, and Ela is more than capable of stepping in. Marta, Halima, Donne and Nihan work along the wings, and Aleyna, Ece, Maya and DoWon are all dangerous forwards. Maryam and Halim couldn’t be with us today but have also contributed to the team throughout the season.
So, it’s time to get ready for CEESA. We will certainly be strong enough to cause some of the big schools some problems in the tournament and there is nothing more pleasant than annoying Moscow, Prague and Budapest, who often expect to destroy teams like IICS. Let’s all stay healthy and fit and get ready to travel to Bucharest in early November.