Standing Up and Making a Difference By: Angela Fereira

My seventh grade soccer season was right around the corner, tryouts were days away. I was super nervous but also excited. Like usual, there were always around forty-five girls that tryout so I knew my chances of making varsity were unlikely. After an exhausting three days I spent my weekend staring at the ceiling in my room. Than around 2 o’clock on a Sunday my Mom called me into her room and I shot out of bed and sprinted down the hall to my parents bedroom. She said nothing, just pointed to her computer and there it was. An email from my N.C.M.S. coach beginning with something cliche like “This was an extremely difficult decision and to all who didn’t make it I encourage you to keep playing and tryout next year.” But that’s not what I cared about, I cared about the truth. So it started, “Captains” then “Varsity” to “JV”, I began to scroll through varsity slowly losing faith. JV came and I read in big bold letters “Angela Ferreira”, disappointment was all I could feel. I decided to to use this throughout the season to only become a better version of myself, and I did. Summertime came and I decided to workout and run to better my chances for my eighth grade year. My cousin lived about two or three miles away so I decided to run there throughout the summer. Of course I had those days where I was hopeless and days I was motivated.

September came which meant my favorite time of year was coming up. Tryouts started. I was there another long three days and put in everything I had, I felt more confident in myself than ever. Tryouts finally ended on a Friday, and my Mom told me she received an email from my coach. I started reading “Captains” which wasn’t my goal, then “Varsity” and there was my name and I was so excited knowing my hard work payed off. The following day was a Monday which meant practice was right after school. Before practice I was sitting at lunch talking to one of my friends who was one of the captains. She said to me “If I had to guess what the starting lineup for the year would be, you’d be in it”. I was surprised she thought that I didn’t think that would ever happen.

Practice came after a long day at school. He asked us to stand in a line and he called eleven girls to go to the other side of the field, including me. I looked at the other players he called and started thinking we might be the starting eleven and sure enough we were. He said to us, “ You're my most valuable and toughest players. I’d be confident winning any game with you eleven out on the field.” I was so happy and proud of myself. I started in our first game.

Shortly after, I realized I had shin splints that were painful; I told the coach about it. He would always name the starters at the end of practice when we had a game the next day, and when he did I wasn’t one of them. I understood his reasoning but that didn’t change how I felt, I was really upset. I thought to myself that it was probably just for one game and it wasn’t a big deal I just need to keep working hard in practice. The season flew by, I kept contacting the coach, and I still wasn’t starting. Weeks went by and I still did not get a response from him and I stopped expecting one, and the season ended and I never made the starting lineup and the season ended.

I put all that aside and began to look forward to my travel team. I began to forget about North soccer until my Mom one day received an email from the head coach of North. Explaining that his team is a u16 team and a lot of his girls were injured at the time so he needed some help when game time came. He said that that the girls he sent the email to impressed him during the N.C.M.S. season and that he thought they could handle playing against sixteen year olds. I was excited about it and told him I’d be happy to do it, he was truly the one coach I’ve always wanted to impress, even just getting a good job from him made me proud of myself.

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