The College Park Boy's Soccer season filled with its challenges, changes, and successes came to a close on March 19th. Despite difficulties due to the pandemic, the team was able to compete in most of their games and tournaments with protocols in place to keep competitors and coaches safe.
This year also brought a new coach and many new players to the varsity team. Coach John Owens, the founding boy's soccer coach, stepped down in order to take a new position at Willis High School this year. The interim head coach, Chip Ehlert, took charge.
Overall, the team finished the season with a record of 8-16-1. They placed fourth in the district behind The Woodlands, Conroe, and Oak Ridge. One of the most prominent wins of the season was on March 12th when the team competed against Oak Ridge in a district game and won 3-1. The team advanced to the playoffs, but came up short against MacArthur and lost 3-1 in the first round.
This season was different compared to last year's abrupt halt in the middle of their schedule. The team was 9-6-3 when the UIL called the season off, and there is no indication as to how far the team would have made it in the playoffs. However, the 2021 season showcased how the boys' talent and drive against tough competitors have the potential to follow in the 2019 team's footsteps and compete in the state tournament again in the future.
Until next January, the team will be busy polishing their skills and developing the players in order to be ready for the competition ahead.
Soccer has become many student-athletes' passion and zeal. Corina Salazar is a junior at Forney High School who plays soccer for the Lady Rabbits Soccer team. Salazar has been playing soccer for 10 years! She is a versatile player who has sensational footwork and speed.
Being an athlete has taught Salazar many things about sportsmanship and teamwork. As an athlete, she learned that dedication and consistency are key to being successful. Soccer has kept her productive and overall a healthy person. The intensity of the level of soccer she participates in has kept her endurance and health at an all-time high. She has also learned that in order to be successful one has to diminish the natural want of coming up with excuses for not working hard. She understands that there will be times where she will want to quit, but she'll keep pushing no matter what. Salazar's mantra is as follows:
"A successful student-athlete is a person who does not use one thing to excuse the failure of another and manages a healthy balance between both. A student-athlete is capable of being able to do both and their success is determined by how much effort they put into it and that they are happy being a student-athlete."
Salazar has been playing soccer for a decade now, but what made her make the simple decision to continue to play soccer this long? She made the decision to play soccer thus far because it's something that she genuinely enjoys spending her time doing. Whenever she's playing in a game or at practice she wants to be there. She wants to be better. Soccer has never been a chore for her, and will never become something she's forcing herself to participate in. Her sole purpose and motivation is her father. She credits him for introducing her to the sport, and for never allowing her to give up when things got difficult. Because of his efforts, she is now a top-tier soccer player for the Lady Rabbits Soccer team. She hopes to continue her healthy habits and to keep working hard for the future she aspires to have. Salazar hopes to pass down all the life lessons she has learned from soccer to her future children.
When asked "If you could give one piece of advice to your younger self, what would it be?" She responded: "I would tell younger me to not worry about making a mistake, we will make mistakes all the time but you have to pick yourself up. Otherwise, you will be unhappy over something that was not worth being unhappy for." I think we could all agree that this piece of advice is something we all wish we knew as kids. Often, when we experience mistakes for the first time we beat ourselves up and it becomes a habitual thing, but when we learn that failure only leads to success we begin to experience everything we worked hard for.
As for Salazars' future, she is planning on furthering her education at a four-year institution where she will earn a degree in software engineering. She aspires to spend her life doing things that make her happy such as traveling and learning about different cultures. She simply wishes to live a happy and healthy life.
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