SAVGS is an acronym synonymous with winning in the SAAS community. The Seattle Academy Varsity Girls Soccer team made their name winning four state titles from 2005 to 2011. Coached by Seattle Academy Assistant Head of School Rob Phillips, Brooks Hopp, and Walter Major, the SAVGS consistently compete for the state title. Last season, the SAVGS finished third in state losing to the runner-up, King’s Academy, in the semifinals. This season the SAVGS are making yet another run for the title.
Led by senior captains Megan Barwick, Lucy Halperin, and Tayla MacPherson (each four year members of the varsity team), the SAVGS are 10-0-2. They have outscored opponents 67-4, averaging almost six offensive goals scored a game while allowing less than one goal per game on defense.
Leading the Emerald City League (ECL) is sophomore striker Mireya Grey with 14 goals, she also has five assists. Left-wing midfielder Megan Barwick leads the ECL with 11 assists and also has nine goals to her name. Central midfielder Tayla MacPherson also has nine goals and nine assists. Margaret Sneeringer ‘17 is fifth in the ECL with eight goals, and Lexi Leff ‘16 is tied for sixth with seven.
But the SAVGS are more than just a team; they are a family. When asked what it meant to her to be part of the SAVGS, Lucy Halperin said, “It means that every day during the season I get to play my favorite game with 19 of my favorite people, for my three favorite coaches, and I get to represent my school. Being on the SAVGS is my favorite part of high school. I absolutely love it.”
When asked the same question Megan Barwick said, “The SAVGS are a close, cohesive group of girls both on and off the field. And that family stretches to alumni who were a part of past SAVGS teams. There is a quote by Michelle Akers, former USA soccer woman's national team player that sums up what it means for me to be a part of the SAVGS. ‘We play because we love the game, we love each other, and we love to win.’”
Tayla MacPherson gave her thoughts on being part of the SAVGS: “It means a lot being a part of such a tight community. We are truly a family. We know we always have each other at the end of the day even if we didn't play well. Having such good relationships plus doing something we love together is a great feeling.”
The SAVGS family has brought unparalleled success to SAAS athletics. Winning championships is every athlete’s dream. The SAVGs have won four state titles and could be well on their way to winning another this season.
Megan Barwick shared her thoughts on winning state in 2011: “Winning state was by far the best experience I have had in high school, and I know Lucy Halperin and Tayla MacPherson agree. We had great leadership, skill, and work rate on the 2011 SAVGS team which made us, without a doubt, the best girls’ 1A soccer team in the state that year. The feeling of winning state after working so hard for three months every day to get there is something I would never trade, and will never forget.”
Undefeated this season, the SAVGS are on the top of the ECL table. After last year’s defeat in the semifinals year, the girls are motivated to take the title this year. In regards to the loss last season, Tayla said, “It was heartbreaking because we knew we were the better team. We just didn't perform to our full potential. I wish I could replay that game. But I mean you can't win every game. I definitely learned from that game as a player and I know semis this year will be very different!”
Tayla also gave her thoughts on what it would mean to her to win the state championship this year: “Everything! Winning state freshmen year was one of the best feelings I have ever had and winning this year would just mean the same and more. Knowing I worked my butt off for four years and achieving something as huge as winning state would be incredible.”
The SAVGS have dominated just about every team they have faced this season, perhaps most memorably the 6-0 shellacking of Forrest Ridge at Fall Sports Mania. The SAVGS continue their run to the state title this Tuesday against Annie Wright at 3:30 at Starfire. For further updates on their season follow @SAVGS2014 on Twitter.