Los Fresnos News

Special Olympics —Los Fresnos Soccer Team Shined at State Competition in San Antonio

Emilio Flores

The Los Fresnos Special Olympics Varsity Soccer team showcased their incredible talent and determination as they competed in the State Championships held in San Antonio this past weekend. Led by Coach Mauricio Rodriguez, this team of exceptional athletes with special needs exceeded expectations and left a lasting impression on all who witnessed their remarkable performance.

For these athletes, the sports competition offered more than just an opportunity to showcase their skills on the field. Coach Mauricio Rodriguez emphasized the benefits of such events, stating, “This type of sports competition provided our athletes, with special needs, opportunities for growth in many areas. Besides the usual motor skills development and all the other health-related benefits, they learned to become more independent, as many had never traveled without their families.”

The journey to the State Championships was a significant milestone for many of these athletes, as it marked their first time venturing out on their own. As they bonded with their teammates and connected with members of other teams from across the state, lifelong friendships were forged, creating memories that Coach Rodriguez shares, will last a lifetime.

Moreover, the experience of competing at State enabled these individuals to embrace leadership roles and push themselves beyond their perceived limitations. Coach says, “Some of these individuals take upon leadership roles, and others push themselves beyond old boundaries, developing resiliency and a strong sense of self-esteem and pride.”

Coach Rodriguez expressed his pride in his team’s growth, saying, “All the coaching staff and I felt very lucky and very proud to have the opportunity to work with them and be part of their development, as athletes, as well as individuals.”

The Los Fresnos Special Olympics Varsity Soccer team boasted an exceptional roster of talented athletes who exemplified skill, determination, and teamwork throughout the tournament. Among the standout players were Victor Elizondo, Arturo Grimaldo, Ramiro Orduna, Alfonso Passament, and Joe Rodriguez from Los Fresnos United. Additionally, Yahir Martinez, Hector Vela, and the team’s outstanding goalie, Erika Moreno, from Los Fresnos High School, made significant contributions to the team’s success.
Erika Moreno’s goalkeeping prowess was particularly noteworthy, as she emerged as the standout goalkeeper of the tournament. Coach Rodriguez describes Moreno as an “Awesome goalie.”

Coach says, “Parents told us that some of them were so excited the day before the trip, that they were unable to sleep.”

Their remarkable performance at the State Championships serves as an inspiration to others, proving that with dedication, teamwork, and a supportive community, anything is possible.

The Los Fresnos Special Olympics Varsity Soccer team had proven that they were champions in every sense of the word.