A loving "goodbye" to soccer at Rose High
BY WILLIAM YOUNG OCTOBER 31 2014
As I finish up my senior season, it has finally hit me that this is it. Every season prior to this year, I would turn in my jersey, knowing that there would always be another season. I would get another chance to play soccer for my school. There would be more Conley games, Chili Nights and 3v3 tournaments. This year when I turn my jersey in, that will be it. The green “Rampants” lettering will never again stretch across my chest, and the number five will belong to someone else.
As a freshman, I remember walking into Wes Measamer field terrified I would not be good enough. My anxiety left when I was put on JV and I saw how much fun the season would be with Coach Vidal. Senior year felt so far away at that time, almost like I would never reach it. I had four seasons, and at that time it felt like an infinity.
The senior nights went by, and even as recently as last year I could not see myself in that position. I knew that one day I would run across the field carrying a rose to give to my mother. That night always felt far away, but just recently that dream became a reality. My name was called and I ran across the field to embrace my teary-eyed mother and give her my rose.
The seniors and I faced many challenges to get where we are today. As freshmen and sophomores, we played in the last two years of the Wilmington conference, which included long bus rides and tough losses. Our junior year, we helped transition the team to a new conference and won a share of the conference championship. Finally as seniors, we improved our conference and overall records from last year, beat highly ranked teams Millbrooke and Jacksonville and left a sour taste in New Bern’s mouth when we beat them on their senior night. We would not have been able to accomplish so much without the guidance of our coaches.
I want to say thank you to my coaches: Coach Vidal, Coach Harvey and Coach Smith.
Coach Vidal taught me to slow the game down and to fully enjoy soccer rather than just play it. Coach Harvey taught me about the level of hard work that is necessary to achieve my goals. Coach Smith has coached me for the past two years, and he has taught me to always strive to improve myself and strengthened my ability as a leader. Thank you all for your commitment to making myself and the rest of the team better soccer players and men.
To my underclassmen teammates, I urge every one of you to train now. Take every opportunity to improve for next season. As a senior, I have seen this program at its worst and at its best. We have come so far in the last couple of years and I am so proud to have been apart of that. However, you must not focus on how far we have come, but how far we can go from here. I am jealous of you because you have time, something I no longer have. You will get to wear the Rose soccer jerseys again, and it is so important to me that you take every opportunity to make the 2015 season even better than this one.