The Arlington Catholic girls soccer team just completed the first undefeated regular season in school history. This team has good coaching, talent, skill, drive and one powerful motivating force – their junior goalie, Liz DeBenedictis.
Liz had allowed just one goal in the first five games of the season when suddenly she felt weak and tired. Liz was diagnosed with leukemia, her season was over.
While Liz was wagering her courageous fight with an enemy that has no
conscience, her teammates immediately dedicated themselves and their
season to Liz. They wore green headbands, a symbol of leukemia
awareness, to every practice and game. Before each game they write the
word “Fight” on their wrist to remind themselves of the fight Liz is
enduring. There are visits to the hospital, phone calls, e-mails and
texts. The girls on the team never stop thinking about Liz and her
There are stopwatches to measure speed, yard markers to
measure distance but it is impossible to measure the human spirit.
Liz’s cause has propelled this team to play above anyone’s expectations
and Liz expected nothing less from her friends and teammates.
Liz has been in and out Children’s Hospital since late September.
visited with her at her Arlington home one day and we talked about her
battle and how much her teammates constant support and love has helped
her endure. Liz never asks, “why me?” She told me she has “really good
friends and if I can get through hard days, there is always a good day
around the corner.” She has no doubt she will beat this thing and told
me she is planning on “playing second base on the softball team” in the
I have no doubt that this will happen thanks to her family,
friends and teammates. Liz has found out quickly that teammates are