Women's Club Soccer: End-of-Season Interview with Jakelin Escobar

By: Christian Portillo

MORAGA, CALIF. - The Saint Mary’s Women’s Club Soccer team had one of their more successful seasons in recent memory, finishing with a record of 4-3-1 on their way to a solid fourth place record in the Division II NorCal League of the West Coast Soccer Association. Over the course of eight games, the Gaels garnered 13 total points. They scored a total of 15 goals and gave up a total of 12 goals. SMC Campus Recreation was able to talk to senior Jakelin Escobar about the coaches’ impact on the team, how they were able to improve from last season, and what the future holds for this young squad.

 

*Note: This interview has been condensed and edited for clarity.

On Coach Marisol Luna’s impact as a former player-turned-head coach…

Marisol [Luna] is actually retiring after this year. Luis Pinto is taking over this year. The transition from Marisol being a player to a coach worked out because the [current] upperclassmen played with her as freshmen and have now become captains. We have grown a lot as a team under her.

On turning the ship around after a winless spring season and what has led to their drastic improvement as a team…

Compared to other schools, we are a small school, numbers-wise. This year, the freshmen really stepped up because our team is predominantly freshman and sophomores. This season has been one of our best seasons because we are usually looking at low numbers (only a small amount of players come out to play), so it is hard to do well in the league. At one point we didn’t even have a season because we didn’t have enough players. So this has been a really good year for us.

On what she has learned about the team from this season that she didn’t know before…

Our team is very diverse. This year we have some more science majors but we are definitely a bunch of goofballs. Practices were never dull. We’re girls-we talk all the time-we share our days and our frustrations. The whole point [of club soccer] is to not think about the day or stress further. Frankie is a character. We had the perfect balance of coaches-Marisol is always talkative and is big on fitness. Frankie is like a child but can be serious and direct us. Louis is a real knowledgeable coach and told us what to work on. It is sad to see Marisol and Frankie leave but I am excited to see what Louis has in store for the team.

If she were to describe the season in just one sentence…

I think we had a great season-it was definitely memorable. We placed [fourth] in league, which we haven’t done since my freshman year. It is a great group of girls who will play next year-they will definitely will have a good core.

On how being a part of the women’s club soccer has been an enjoyable part of her SMC experience…

I’ve been playing since my freshman year. [By playing] with girls in the same grade, I’ve been able to meet and grow with a bunch of girls that I [otherwise] wouldn’t have met if I had just stuck with my [Biology] major or clubs.

On what the team plans to carry over from this Fall campaign to the spring season…

It’s going to be a big transition for the team because we are losing both our head coach and assistant coach and having Louis [Pinto] step up. It will be a shock but it is what’s best for the team because Louis is a really good coach and the girls will learn a lot from him.

On what else could be improved over the winter for the spring campaign…

As a team, we definitely want to try winning. We want to get first in the league. This motivates the seniors and gets more people to come out [and support].

A message for all of the Women’s Club Soccer team’s fans, alumni, and supporters…

As a senior, I would say it was awesome to be a part of the Women's Club Soccer team and I would definitely encourage more people to come out and support the girls. I wish them the best of luck in the future.