Hillel Lions Kick Off Soccer Pre-Season


Yesterday marked the beginning of the Hillel Lions Soccer Pre-Season. The Lions played the Posnack Rams and won with an incredible final score of 4-0.


The game took place on Hillel turf and began at 7:00 pm, lasting for around two hours. Fans were encouraged to wear all black to take part in a schoolwide “blackout.” With incredible teamwork and a “roaring” crowd cheering them on, the Lions were successful in winning their first game of the year.


In preparation for the game, students on the soccer team were interviewed on their inspirations in playing the game, as well as what makes their love of soccer so powerful. Alberto Koenig, center-back/team captain, commented that he has been on the field playing soccer since he was only three years old. When asked for his favorite part about soccer, he responded, “Soccer allows me to disconnect myself from everything else going on in my life and focus all of my attention on the game while having the best time.” 


Morning practices, which require players to wake up very early, were also a topic of conversation. The team captain reflected: “I love morning practices. They are my favorite. If it was up to me, we would have one every day. I like them because they get my day started early. They give me extra energy throughout the day.” When asked for his biggest motivation, he responded: “The thing that motivates me most is the understanding that I am playing for something bigger than myself.”

Similar questions were asked of five other players: Sam Attias (goalie), Moises Sutton (striker), Jonathan Lev-Tov (last man; center back), Max Benarroch (right back), and Aquiba Serfati (midfield). The first question was, “When did you start getting involved in soccer?” Answers ranged anywhere from “two months ago” to “since I was seven years old.” When asking player Sam Attias what he enjoys most about soccer he said, “The environment. I love the feeling of being under pressure and succeeding. I love playing for a team rather than myself. We are one team and you really feel the unity.” Similarly, Aquiba Serfati said that “Playing with my team and creating a relationship with different people” is what he enjoyed most about the game – “I love becoming a part of the family and representing Scheck Hillel.”


The same group of players was asked what motivates them most when playing on the field. Attias said, “The thing that motivates me the most is that this is my ‘one last ride.’ It’s my last year in Hillel, and it’s the final opportunity that I have to go out and win.” Jonathan Lev-Tov reflected on what makes him happiest while playing, saying, “As much as I like seeing myself succeed, it makes me happiest when I see the team succeed. When one person scores, we all score.” Max Benarroch thinks of Sholem Benchimol, Z” L, as one of his biggest inspirations: “Sholem is what motivates me the most while playing. I feel like he’s always with us. He gives me the power to push forward…”

After the game, Head Coach, Coach Mariano Palau, and Athletic Director, Manuel Atzoci, shared their excitement about the victory, as well as their hopes for the rest of the season. Coach Atzoci commented: “I want the team to go as far as they can. Hopefully, we can make it to States like last year. I want them to get closer as a team and become a united front that will carry on for years.”


We look forward to seeing many more Scheck Hillel Lion victories in their upcoming season!