Athlete of the Issue: Coco Pearce

Athlete+of+the+Issue%3A+Coco+Pearce

Pearce sprints after the ball as an opponent attempts to block her.

Julia Hass, Managing Editor

For most Miramonte students who decide to take on the burden of high school soccer, the experience is a grueling one. There are daily practices in the rain and cold, not to mention the lengthy games that occur twice a week. However, for Coco Pearce ‘13, high school soccer is a welcome break from the even more intense club soccer that she participates in for the rest of the year.

From the week high school soccer ends to the week high school soccer begins, Pearce is playing year-round, highly competitive soccer on the renowned Lamorinda United team.

“I’ve been on the Lamorinda team since I was eight years old. I tried out because my sister was doing it. I had no idea what I was signing myself up for,” Pearce said.

For the past 10 years Pearce has been on a team with girls just as committed to soccer as she is.

“We work extremely hard, but it’s an incredible feeling when that hard work pays off. I’d say that’s why I’ve stuck with soccer as long as I have,” Pearce said.

Though Pearce has seen many girls come and go, there has been only one other girl who’s been on the team as long as she has.

“My team has grown really close over the past few years because we’ve been through so much together, mainly suffering, but some really good moments too,” Pearce said.

A huge part of the Lamorinda experience has been Pearce’s coach, Mohammad Mohammad, who is also the head coach of women’s varsity soccer this year. His unique training techniques and infallible teachings, though extremely rigorous, have shaped her soccer style and made her the player she is today.

Mohammad has also been instrumental in getting Pearce’s team where it is today. They’ve traveled as far as New York to play, and in 2010 were named 4th in the nation. Because of this, many of the girls on the team have had their choice of top-notch colleges. Pearce has spoken to such schools as Yale University and Pomona College about possibly playing for them next year, but she hasn’t yet made up her mind.

“I’m not totally sure if I want to play soccer in college. It’s been such a huge part of my life that it seems weird to think of just giving it up, but at the same time it’d be nice to have just a more relaxed college experience,” Pearce said.

For now, Pearce is enjoying her fourth and final season on Miramonte’s women’s varsity soccer team as center mid. The position necessitates the skills of communicating, keeping an open vision of the field and being in stellar shape, all of which Pearce has mastered over the her extensive soccer career.

“We have a really good lineup this year, a lot of freshmen and a lot of energy, and I think all of the seniors are excited about doing really well for our last year here,” Pearce said.

Pearce is hardly contained to her athletic life. Pearce has maintained an extremely high GPA, has taken the most grueling of Miramonte’s classes and has an impressive number of hobbies in spite of the amount of time she devotes to playing soccer. She has a passion for knitting, cooking and playing the guitar.

Pearce can most likely be found doing one of these activities off the field or just living life.