The Determination of the Mimbas

The Mimbas are defeated in their second game of their playoffs, but have high expectations because of their prospects

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Facing off against Midwood High School in the first round of the playoffs, Stuyvesant’s girls’ soccer team, the Mimbas, played a tightly contested game. After giving up an early lead, senior and co-captain Saloni Majmudar tied the game up in the first half with a solid assist by sophomore Selene Kaehny. Then, nearing the end of the half, Kaehny hit a decisive free kick to give the Mimbas the lead that they wouldn’t relinquish for the rest of the game. This was the team’s first playoff win for the graduating senior class, and they savored every moment of it.

Once again, the Mimbas’ defense played a critical role in the win. For the sixth time in 16 games, the team limited its opponent to under two goals. This defensive-minded approach takes pressure off the offense by limiting the opposing team’s scoring. “I was really proud of how we played,” Majmudar said.

Sadly, in the following game, the Mimbas lost a difficult match of 6-0 against Francis Lewis High School, ending their season. Even though the match was one-sided in its outcome, the team fought until the end. “We definitely played our hearts out for the full 80 minutes. We knew we were going into a tough game, playing the two seed, but we didn’t let that get to our heads,” senior and co-captain Charlotte Ruhl said. However, after such an exhilarating game two days prior, the team did not have enough to muster another victory.

Though the team lost in the second round, the Mimbas have been steadily improving since the current seniors first arrived. “During my freshman year, we only had one win so it was so rewarding to see my four years of hard work on the team pay off,” Majmudar said. Each year, the team has improved. After going a combined 3-22 in 2014 and 2015, the team jumped to 6-5 in 2016 and had a playoff berth. Unfortunately, they lost in the first round to Cardozo High School, 3-0. This year, the team made it to the second round and finished with a tie for third in its Manhattan A2 division, the highest finish to date.

Overall, this team will hopefully continue to improve for next season. Only three players will be graduating—Majmudar, Ruhl, and senior Sophia Gunluk—so much of the team will remain the same. Many of the team’s offensive players will also be back, as sophomores Kaehny and Eve Wening, as well as freshman Aki Yamaguchi, who scored eight goals each, will provide an elite 1-2-3 combination for the offense next year. After a taste of the playoffs this year, this young and competitive team will remain strong in the upcoming years. “I can’t wait to see how this team continues to grow in the years to come,” Ruhl said.