Pandemic Shuts Down Soccer Team

The Northwood School soccer team was hard to beat this year, but the strength and power of the beast COVID-19 kept the squad off the field in Las Vegas for the Players Showcase, one of the most anticipated events on the soccer team’s schedule.

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The abrupt ending of the spring soccer season was difficult for the players, who are very close (Photo: Black Rock FC).

After achieving second place in Las Vegas last year, the Huskies were hungry for victory in 2020. Their dream was destroyed when students received an email the afternoon of March 10 notifying them the school was banning all school-sponsored travel through spring break. This decision created a feeling of unfairness and disappointment within the soccer team, which lost a great opportunity to play soccer in front of college scouts. Despite disagreeing with the decision made by the school’s administration, and players asked the administration to reconsider. But the next day, when most teams were expected to arrive in Las Vegas, the Showcase was canceled altogether.

As a respected institution who cares about its students, the school’s priority is to keep people safe, and that was the reason why all school travel was canceled and why students were eventually sent home.

Alvaro Rodriguez Arregui, the parent of Mateo Rodriguez ’20 and Lucas Rodriguez ’20, supported the school’s decision and understood the players’ disappointment. “I know it’s tough for the boys not to go to Las Vegas, both because they love the game and want to be seen by college scouts,” said Mr. Rodriguez. “On the first point, that’s life and this is one of many situations in life where an externality will deviate you from what you want to do,” he said. “On the second point, there were not going to be any college scouts [at the showcase] since most universities had prohibited travel by all staff, including coaches. It was the right decision by Northwood’s leadership for many reasons but most importantly because of the safety of the boys,” said Rodriguez.

Unfortunately, the bad news kept coming during the following few days when the program was notified that the other major event of the spring, the Dallas Cup, had also been canceled. With two of the biggest tournaments in the country canceled, many uncommitted seniors on the soccer team, who saw these tournaments as their final recruitment opportunity before leaving high school, have left campus with a tormenting feeling of uncertainty, since they don’t know what will happen with their college recruitment process. They relying on the support of their college counselors and soccer coaches to help them find the right college fit for them while they are home.

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