Men’s soccer gives back to the community

Clifton Jones

Sacramento State men’s soccer took advantage of the opportunity to give back to the community when an old friend of head coach Mike Linenberger,asked if his youth club team can watch the Hornets play.  

The Carmichael U12 club soccer team, Spitfires, led by coach Nick Dadigan were ball boys for during the Cal State Northridge game on Oct. 3. While helping out, the Spitfires saw what it takes to be a college soccer player.

Linenberger said he makes sure his team has an opportunity to give back to the soccer community.

“We try to do it close to at least five calendar days for community service,” Linenberger said.

“We strive as well as encourage our players to give back to the soccer community,”

On Oct. 9, Linenberger sent four players to the Spitfires practice that included freshmen defender Matthew Fisher and goalkeeper James Del Curto and sophomores midfielder Cesar Mendoza and forward Brad Kellogg.

“When I was a kid my club soccer coach did the same thing, so it is kind of like a legacy for me to do with the team I am coaching,” Dadigan said.

One of the Spitfire players, Nicholas Oregel, was really impressed with how fast the game is at the college level when he saw the Hornets play.

“It was incredible going out to the game,” Oregel said.

Although it was an eye opening experience for the Spitfire players to see Sac State play, it was even more special for the kids when the five players came to practice.

“You can tell that the kids really enjoyed us being there with them at practice,” Fisher said.

Mendoza said his teammates wanted to make sure this practice was enjoyable for the kids and not like the high intense practices his team has.

“Coming from a soccer background we took what we learned growing up and mixed everything together to make it fun with kids,” Mendoza said. “We made it fun because it was a competitive practice.”

Nick Dadigan said it is unusual for him to see that most of his team wants to play goalie.

“Back in my day as a kid, there was probably two people who wanted to play goalie,” Dadigan said. “I personally asked [Linenberger] and the other coaches to send out goalies to the practice.”

Dadigan’s son, Hunter, has had a keen interest in playing goalie for his dad’s team since he saw senior goalkeeper Cesar Castillo play.

“I really liked when [Del Curton] came out with the team because he taught me how to play the goalie position,” Hunter Dadigan said.

Among the many things the Hornets taught the Spitfires, the most important thing was to play in a classy way instead of playing with hate toward the other team.

After practice, 11-year-old, Oregel had some advice oh his own for Sac State.

“The only way to win is to lose,” Oregel said. “They don’t always have to win, its ok to lose every now and then.”