STCC soccer players pull together to buy teammate a pair of shoes
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Needed: Soccer cleats, never worn.
A Springfield Technical Community College soccer team member played most of the season with cleats held together with duct tape. During one game, an opposing player slid into him, ripping the shoes open. He had an extra pair that also was in bad shape. He returned to practice with his old cleats newly taped together.
The team recognized he needed help.
“He’s one of the best players we have,” said captain Siervo Jimenez, of Springfield, who spoke on behalf of the team. “I don’t know what his family situation is. He’s been playing with these cleats. They’ve been through it all. They were just taped together.”
The 15 men on the team decided to pool their money to buy a good pair of soccer cleats. The player in need has large feet, so it wasn’t easy to find the right pair. The students put in what they could afford – anywhere from $5 to $20. They had nearly $200 to spend, which can buy a very nice pair of soccer shoes.
The player who received the gift asked not to be identified, but expressed his gratitude.
“I really want to show my appreciation and love to my teammates for what they've done for me. We all came together just a few months ago from different paths. We've grown as a team and as a family, so I'm very thankful to have been a part of such a very special group,” he said.
Teammate Mustafa Rasheed, of Westfield, spoke about the special bond the players had this past season. They made it to the NJCAA Region XXI semi-finals.
“I played in high school. I played in different leagues,” Rasheed said. “I never played with a team like this. We are connected as one person. If someone needs cleats, we will make sure they get them.”
Jimenez, the team captain, said he also felt a strong connection to his teammates.
“You can play soccer, but to become an actual team, it takes a lot of work,” Jimenez said. “We have the right pieces here. I think that is pretty much what it came down to. We have been like a family. So, when we saw that one of our brothers needed help, we didn’t think twice. We said, let’s get together and make this happen.”
Interested in applying to STCC? Visit stcc.edu/apply or call Admissions at (413) 755-3333.
About Springfield Technical Community College
Founded in 1967 and located on 35 acres of the Springfield Armory National Historic Site, STCC is a major resource for the economic vitality of Western Massachusetts. As the only technical community college in Massachusetts, STCC offers a variety of career programs unequalled in the state. STCC’s highly regarded transfer programs in business, advanced manufacturing, healthcare, liberal arts, and STEM fields continue to provide the most affordable options for students pursuing a four-year degree. With an annual enrollment of about 7,000 day, evening, weekend, and online students, STCC is a vibrant campus rich in diversity.
For more information about STCC, visit www.stcc.edu. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter (@S_T_C_C) and Instagram (@stccpics).
Jim Danko, (413) 755-4812, email@example.com