Team Moseulpo brought on 3 players from Team Seogwipo in Sally (Siyoon) Kim (G8), Esther (Jeongbin) Choi (G7), and Chae-Eun Yang (G6) for insurance against some unknown opponents in Songdo this past weekend. Nerves was definitely a factor for many of our girls on day 1. In fact, several of our new players were experiencing their first ever soccer tournament. Nevertheless, the girls started out playing their system and immediately made a statement. In their first game against one of the three Chadwick teams, our girls clearly had more offensive chances, but one unlucky bounce going the other way allowed Chadwick to score one against us. The game would finish 1-0 in favour of Chadwick. The next game was against arguably the best team at Songdo 7s: Seoul Foreign School. SFS had previously disposed of their first opponent 11-0. They would go on to top our team (4-0) and Group B. The last match of the day pit our girls up against Dwight School Seoul. Unphased by the previous losses, the girls finished with a complete effort that saw them pot 3 goals, and goalkeeper Helen Jeong (G8) finished with a clean sheet.
On day 2, the girls were through to the quarter finals and had to match up against a tough Chadwick side that performed well on day 1 in Group A. Our girls showed patience, mental fortitude, and confidence in our system, which resulted in Lynn Kim (G7) blasting home a goal to put us ahead. That lone goal would be enough to send us into the semis and a tough rematch against SFS from day 1. In the semis, the girls demonstrated resilience and their greatest work ethic yet. Unfortunately, SFS squeaked one goal past our defense. The game ended 1-0 in SFS’ favour.
KISJ MSGS finished 4th out of 8 teams and showed they clearly belonged at the tournament despite never participating in it before this weekend. Songdo 7s was a huge learning experience that should prove to be great experience leading up to our final tournament in two weeks’ time at KISAC.
Our boys’ excitement was palpable as they boarded the bus on Friday evening in advance of their flight to Seoul. With an air of professionalism, it was clear that our ten chosen representatives were prepared to define what it is to be a Dragon both on and off the pitch.
On Saturday morning, our team found themselves standing across from our hosts and ultimate tournament champions, Chadwick International. With a decorated history at the tournament, Chadwick was sure to be a formidable opponent. With confidence and determination, KISJ took to the field. After going down 1-0, our boys bounced back to take the lead 3-1. However, with a show of their own determination, Chadwick worked hard to end the match in a 3-3 draw.
Showing our goal-scoring prowess in the next match, KISJ defeated Fayston Preparatory School 7-0. And finally, despite being weary after a long day of intense focus and attention, our boys mustered all of their energy to defeat Dulwich College 2-1, placing KISJ second in Group A and winning a spot in the single elimination Cup competition the following day.
Come Sunday morning, our boys were certainly tired after the efforts on Saturday. With an early match against Shinjeong, our exhaustion got the better of us. Having gone down 2-0, KISJ gathered our last remaining morsel of energy to score our final goal. Eventually, we succumbed to Shinjeong’s pressure and lost 3-1. However, having made it to the quarter finals of a 16-team tournament, our boys had plenty to be proud of.
KISJ finished the tournament in 5th place, displaying Dragons pride and character throughout the weekend. With another two-day tournament on the horizon, KISJ is prepared to learn from our experience in Songdo and display our might at KISAC.