Credo High School Girls Soccer Team played in the NCS Championship game Saturday against St. Vincent de Paul. Credo Gryphons devoted fans travelled to St. V’s Mustang territory to pack the bleachers and cheer on their school. Although Credo lost the match 4-0, ask anyone and they’ll tell you, they were winners before they ever ran out onto the field.
“We’re just really excited to be here and excited to be in the finals and excited to even make the playoffs, it’s our first time in the league!” Says Credo Athletic Director, Kim Holland.
Going into the championship game, Credo’s rankings were 12 wins, 5 losses and 1 draw with a state ranking of 8 out of 25 schools. This is an incredible set of stats considering this is the first year for Credo Girls Soccer as a member of the Coastal Mountain Conference.
Their opponent, the undefeated St. Vincent de Paul, entered the match with an astounding overall record of 19-0, with a ranking of number 2 in the state.
“They’re a formidable opponent,” says Holland.
After the game, medals awarded and photo ops shot, Credo Soccer coach, Chrit Longmaid beamed.
“I am so thrilled. We’ve never made the playoffs. I can’t be more proud of this team. They’ve worked really hard. We started with players who never touched a soccer ball. And now, the success of Credo [as a school] is drawing students to play the game.”
Going back four years when the Waldorf –inspired commuter school first began its soccer program, Credo’s girls played as a non-league soccer team. This year, Credo is 3rd in their league, the Division III of the North Coast Section of the California Interscholastic Federation.
Coach Longmaid continues, “You know we [began] with no budget, it was a start-up school, the parents, the community has totally supported us and now to get here in four years - it’s a really big deal.”
It is a testament to the efforts of the Credo team, coach Chrit Longmaid and athletic director Kim Holland and extends to the school administrators and the students’ parents who five years ago had no soccer program at all.
“I’m just so thrilled that they got to experience this. It was a ‘win-win’ before we even started. I have to say this program wouldn’t even be if not for [Athletic Director] Kim Holland. She’s amazing. She’s made this happen.”
When Credo began their soccer program four years ago, the team played only three games per year. Athletic Director Kim Holland’s daughter, Ashley, then a freshman, played on the soccer team. She was the only girl who had played any soccer ever before.
“[Four years later in 2017] we have six or seven girls who play competitive soccer* in the off-season. The rest of the players are recreational soccer players,” Athletic Director Holland states.
(*Competitive soccer players will play year round.)
When asked why they made it to the championships this year, Ashley Holland, now a graduating senior says,
“We’re so together and we’re so positive and we really care for each other and I feel like that really helped us to be positive and keep going. We had a few hard games against Tech and St. Vincent before but we kept it fun, happy.”
Speaking as a mother, Holland is enthusiastic about the whole experience.
“Coming full circle with my own daughter, seeing it here, her last game on the field in a final in a league setting, absolutely it’s exciting!”
Ashley Holland agrees with her mom, “I’m happy with what I’m leaving, we came from a six game team to THIS! We’re in the championship my first year in league.”
Coach Longmaid projects, “I think we have a really good crack at next year’s soccer season. What’s happening at Credo is an amazing thing.”
FOR AN AUDIO PERSPECTIVE OF THE GAME, VISIT: