In my eighth grade year I was faced with the first true adversity of my young soccer career. A combination of complacency and overconfidence led to me being placed on the second team at my club, Lightning SC. At first, I must admit, I pointed the finger, and looked to offload the blame. Some soul searching forced me to take a good, hard look in the mirror, realizing that ultimately the only way to establish myself in the first team was to work on my technical skills. I needed to make up for lost time, it was crucial that I improve myself in all aspects of my game. While others were relaxing and resting on their laurels, I was out training, trying to close the skill gap. Come the fall, after a successful campaign I earned my place on the first team. Equally important, I learned that nothing in life is ever handed to you, that in order to push my dream as far as I can, I have to earn my place. I live by this ideal; it is my code in a way. Despite my recent successes, I will never forget what it took to achieve what I have. I train and play like I am still fighting for my spot in the team every session and every game.
If you are not going to give one-hundred percent, why bother? I have been playing club soccer since my 5th grade year. My family drive upwards of three hours round trip to get to practices and games. To get to ODP, we drive four hours round-trip. I train, eat and study like an athlete. For me, soccer isn’t just a pastime or a sport I love, soccer is a lifestyle. At the end of the day, I know that my persistence on and off the field will payoff when my high school career draws to a close. Be it my club, my state team, or my school, I will give every ounce of my energy to my teammates, my coach and myself.