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Mayor Rahm Emanuel today joined students at a rally at Mather High School to honor the school’s boys’ soccer team, which defeated Chatham Glenwood on Saturday, November 5 to become the Class 2A State Champs.
“Your diversity and your triumph over adversity is not just your story: that’s the story of Chicago,” said Mayor Emanuel. “Throughout Chicago, our students are excelling in the classroom and on the playing field. They are showing the city the strength of their optimism, their hard work, and their courage. I congratulate the Mather High team on this thrilling win.”
Along with the Mayor, the students heard from Mather Coach Brank Cvijovic, Alderman Patrick O’Connor (40) and Frank Klopas, Head Coach of the Chicago Fire soccer team, former player for the Chicago Sting and Chicago Fire, and Mather class of 1984 graduate.
"I'm extremely proud to represent Mather High School and the Chicago Fire Soccer Club as we celebrate the first state championship for CPS in 38 years," said Fire head coach Frank Klopas. "I came to this country as an immigrant with my parents and it all started here, in this school. Anything is possible when you have a passion and dedication for what you do and you apply them to your goals on and off the field."
Team member Quodus Lawal, who scored 40 goals and had 27 assists for the season, tallied a state title-game record four goals in the victory. Lawal was also named the 2011 Chicago Tribune Boys high school Soccer Player of the year.
Mather’s state championship is the first won by a Chicago Public League team since 1973 and their appearance in the championship game was the first by a Chicago Public League team since 1977. The boys’ soccer championship team included players from all over the world.
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