With Fall sports season coming to close, we witnessed some amazing plays delivered by our Gauchos, but we don’t know those players on a personal level, do we? I managed to get interviews with a few of our popular Gauchos and get their perspective on their passions and future goals.
Grant Chauncey, 18, played many different sports in high school, one of which being water polo. Earning the title MVP for water polo at Sierra High School, it wasn’t a surprise Chauncey would continue pursuing this aquatic sport into his college career.
In the beginning, Chauncey had no idea what he was getting himself into when he decided to don a speedo and a swim cap. Especially when he was assigned the important role of goalie. “I had no idea what I was getting into and knew nothing about the sport when I first started playing.” Although new to the practice of egg-beatering, it was the praises he got as a goalie in his Junior year did he decide to continue to play the sport in college.
So as a Freshman, Chauncey is both studying Film and a proving to be a worthy opponent in the water. The water polo season for our Gauchos was nearly even in wins and loses, with 17 wins and 15 losses out of 32 games. But Chauncey states the season was memorable: “There were a couple of highlights for sure. We won two overtime games that were pretty insane” (Citrus: 14-13 and Merced: 17-16). As well as, “We won a game, although down one player against Palomar” (Palomar: 14-10).
With the season over, Chauncey is ready to give his full attention to his studies. His eyes are set on USC and Chapman University, although if he were to continue polo, his attentions are fully on the latter school.
Keep up the good work Grant Chauncey! We believe in you!
Samantha Belmonte, 19, was named to the All-OEC First Team 2018 for soccer. OEC is the Orange Empire Conference, a large 40-minute game involving sophomores from both North and South Orange County. The conference focuses on the stats and abilities of the players. Belmonte traveled the long distance to Oxnard, where she scored for her team winning the game 2-0. But let’s get to know our resident soccer player herself.
Belmonte is a Sophmore and majoring in Liberal Arts. Her passion for soccer began as a young girl. “I’ve been playing the sport since I was five so 14 years! It’s seriously the best thing in my life and has lead me to so many opportunities.” These opportunities include multiple soccer scholarships from different universities, at the moment she’s torn between Lesley University in Cambridge, Mass. and a University in Kansas, but Belmonte is happy to keep her options open for any other schools.
This soccer season was rocky for our Gaucho ladies. Saddleback won the very first game against Norco, but near mid-season took some major “L’s”. It wasn’t until the last two games of the season (IVC: 2-0 and OCC: 3-1, Belmonte kicking a leading goal) did the Gaucho’s regain victory. Along with five players earning post-season honors – Belmonte among these chosen players.
The Gauchos may have not made it to the playoffs, but we did win the South Orange County college cup!
You go girls!
Matthew Freem, 19, is a kicker for the Gaucho football team and would be labelled as a “Hero”. Why? Because he won the Patriotic Bowl with a 32-yard field goal!
On November 17th, Saddleback hosted Bakersfield College in the Patriotic Bowl, ensuing the two colleges to meet for the fourth time in over 50 years. With the score tied 31-31 and only nine seconds left in the Final Quarter, it was Freem’s bold field goal that put Saddleback in the winner’s seat and to finish the football season on a high note. The final score being 34-31.
But what else do we know about our “heroic kicker”? Freem is a Freshman and majoring in Business Administration. His football career began in Junior year of high school when he was asked to try out for the team. “Ever since, I loved the game.” A wise choice, as he won us the Bowl! (Holla!) As well as a favorable one in his social life, as Freem believes he’s grown closer with his Gaucho teammates both on and off the field.
With his skills in football etched in stone, Freem wishes to transfer to a Division 1 school and continue his passion for the sport. Arizona State being his current choice and long time dream school.
Hey, ASU! We got your future kicker right here!
(Below is a video of Freem’s epic kick!)