LEAVING HIS LEGACY: Espinoza The Anchor To Northbrook Soccer
IN FOOTBALL, THE QUARTERBACK CALLS THE PLAYS. IN BASKETBALL, THE POINT GUARD SETS THE TONE. IN BASEBALL, THE CATCHER IS THE LEADER.
In soccer, the goalie is the alpha. Luckily for Northbrook soccer, they have Bryan Espinoza protecting the net. Playing in goal is an incredibly stressful position to be in. However, Espinoza has shown his penchant to rise to the challenge for the Raiders, making some clutch saves to keep his team in contention.
“Confidence plays a huge role in being a goalkeeper,” Espinoza said. “Without confidence, you won’ t be as sharp under the three posts. Most people don’ t know what it ’s like and will criticize you, but that ’s where your mindset has to be strong. Dedication, handling, footwork and having technical awareness are crucial for me to succeed.”
The Raiders had a solid district season last year, advancing to the postseason, where they were eliminated in the first round by Lamar. For the senior, he hopes this year will be even more successful.
“This year is definitely different for us Raiders,” said Espinoza. “Culture and discipline between the team have played a huge role in our strong start. Therapy and great recovery sessions after games, and communication within the team and with our coach on and off the field have been really great. The main thing that is working is the different skill sets on the training ground. Our coach has motivated us to work harder this year, and we’re staying focused on what ’s next every game.
“I expect every single one of us to give our all in every game. I intend for us to make a statement for ourselves, and our school, as we represent it. Some games will be tough but I expect us to work harder and play like it ’s always our last game. Making the playoffs last year was a huge memory of mine. That has pushed us to make that dream of going further a reality.”
Considering this is his senior season, Espinoza is looking to leave a legacy. “As a senior, it is very upsetting knowing that it ’s my last year,” he said. “But , I hope to accomplish leaving high school with a soccer scholarship and knowing my team and I accomplished something greater. As a team, I know we want to win district, and I hope to motivate and encourage the underclassmen by being a role model before I leave them.”