Soccer player leads through example

High school is the time when most students explore what they want to do in their life and what they are good at. For senior Joey Wilder soccer plays a key role in who he is and what he is passionate about.

Wilder has been playing soccer since he was 6 and with twelve years of experience, he has learned lessons that many adults continue to struggle with.

“Soccer taught me time management, leadership, and communication, especially with peers and superiors,” Wilder said.

He has always loved soccer because it gives him something to do outside of the classroom.

“I like it because instead of doing class work I get to do something physically exerting and it’s fun, it’s teamwork, and provides me with an escape from school life,” Wilder said.

Soccer has improved many aspects of Wilder’s life and has taught him useful skills and helped him make many friends along the way.

“I have been a captain for many games which has taught me how to lead people and become a better team player,” Wilder said. “You make a lot of friends and learn how to work together with them to achieve a common goal and win the game.”

Senior soccer player Arnold Garcia said he looks up to Wilder during games.

“Joey is the main guy that talks to all the other players and tries to keep everyone on track for when we play important games,” Garcia said. “Soccer has made him a better leader. He has been a captain for two years now and i feel that he is a great one.”

The students are not the only ones that notice Wilder’s talents on the field, though.

“Joey is our top student athlete,” soccer coach Tommie Allmon said. “He takes pride in his academics and he takes it very seriously.”

There are many features that Wilder enjoys about playing soccer, and a few of those lie in the teamwork involved.

“It isn’t about one person’s glory like a lot of other sports where the whole team might rely on one person,” Wilder said. ”It’s all about interplay and teamwork, and I really like that aspect of it.”