The San Leandro Varsity Girls Soccer team has had a tough season, with the current overall record standing at 6 wins, 9 losses, and 2 ties under coach Norma Sanchez. Vanessa Orellana’s teammates agree that she’s the team’s top player. Vanessa says that her inspiration to try out for the team came from her family. She started playing soccer at the age of eight and gained experience playing for clubs in Hayward and Pinole. A major factor that sets Vanessa apart from other players is her versatility. She can play on the defensive end at center-back, and she can also play forward along either wing.
“This year’s team is a really good team; we are really young and we are still learning,” Vanessa commented regarding the current status of the team.
She was named the captain of the team this year which she attributes to her seniority, adding that she’s been on the team since her freshman year. However, being captain comes with a lot of weight to carry, as she states, ”The most difficult part is being positive when we’re doing bad.”
She offers some constructive criticism of her team, ”I think we need to improve on communicating more on the field. Bad communication has caused us to not do so well and get scored on at times.” However, Vanessa also praises her team. ”I think we are strong at defending. The team is good at being there for each other and picking each other up when we are doing bad,” she said.
”Soccer is just fun,” said Vanessa. “Playing with different people every year makes it fun because it is a different experience each year.”
Vanessa has also set some personal and team goals. “One goal I have for the team is to be positive no matter what happens. A goal I have for myself is to become a better player.”