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Goddard girls soccer team has new coach this fall


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“Soccer is fun, but ultimately you have to get your diploma to move on in life and you can’t do that without an education,” said Ricardo Valenzuela, Goddard girls soccer coach. “Academics are equally important as athletics.”

Goddard girls soccer head coach Ricardo Valenzuela (Submitted Photo)

Valenzuela is familiar with the program after spending the past five seasons as the first assistant for the boys team. He also serves as a Spanish teacher and an assistant coach for the track & field team at Goddard High School.

Growing up in a soccer family, the game has always been a big part of Valenzuela’s life. It was the only organized sport he had every played and he continued to do so through junior college. As a kid, Valenzuela did not have the opportunity to play high school soccer. However, as an adult, he is grateful to be part of the growing movement to get more kids involved with the sport he loves.

Valenzuela believes his knowledge and passion for the game will make it easy for him to transition from assistant to head coach. Still, he will have big shoes to fill as he adopts a Goddard girls soccer program that has been very successful in recent years.

“Coach (Jamie) Martinez led the team to a district championship last year and they have done that consistently for the last eight years,” said Valenzuela. “I would like that streak to continue and to go deeper into the state tournament. Last year the girls made it to the semi-finals, and I want to go even deeper than that and go all the way to the finals.”

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The road back to another district title will be a tough one as the Rockets graduated 12 seniors. But Valenzuela is convinced the girls will welcome the challenge, eager to compete for open positions.

Valenzuela’s plan for the team is to not only train and condition but to also allow the team to become better acquainted. He had multiple events planned to help foster friendships and build a stronger team bond.

With a young team, chemistry will be a big part of the Goddard soccer team’s success in the fall.

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