Lopez Soccer Team wins WIAA Academic State Championship

The Lopez Soccer team. Back row: l to r: Coach Melanie Weber, Matthew Haber, Grant Fisher, Nate Drahn, William Carson, Emmett Lawrence, Sam Ferguson, Arlen Coiley, Solomon Bill, Breton Carter, Hannah Hobi. Second row, l to r: Maddie Rain, Laura Strom, Charlie O’Neil, Josef Blanc-Riddings, Tahoma Wrublesky, Lyra Dalton, Samantha Swanson, Owen Rain, ball boy. Seated, l to r: Nia Bartalucci, Elise Lewis, Brooke Schober, Jamie Cummings, Marta Bill.

For the second year in a row, the Lopez Lobos soccer team has won the Washington Interscholastic Athletics Association 1B Team Academic State Championship this fall.

“I really want to congratulate Melanie Weber and her team for winning this award,” Athletic Director Larry Berg said. “Our soccer team had the highest team GPA (3.655) for all 1B  boys’ soccer teams this fall season. This makes two years in a row that we have had the honor of winning this award.”

The WIAA takes the grade average of the entire team, and divides it by the number of players. They do this for every team in the state of Washington, and this is the second year Lopez has won this award.

“When Coach Berg called to congratulate me, I just thought, it’s the teachers, the parents and the kids, who have earned this, not me,” Soccer coach Melanie Webert said. “It’s the parents who have enforced good learning behaviors in their children who should be getting congratulated. And I had a really good group of kids who met these standards.”

“They kept up their studies during soccer season which is admirable,” Berg said.

“Many soccer players and motivated athletes in general tend to have a lot of desire for success. And much of the time, that same athletic drive tends to influence the need to excel in education.

“Had I been with this team for 10 years, and impressed upon them good study habits, then maybe I could take credit,” Weber said. “But the fact of the matter is that I inherited a really smart, motivated group of young people.”