As one of the best development clubs in the area, Davis Legacy prides itself on producing quality players on the field, but even better humans off of it.
A few of those humans have now played in their final games for the club, as the 79-strong class of 2023 heads for graduation as this latest season wraps up.
Some will continue on at the next level of the game, some will focus on academics while continuing to play the game recreationally, and some will be back in the future playing for either the Davis Legacy First Team or the California Storm.
Regardless, Legacy is proud of each and every one of these young individuals, who combined to play 406 seasons for the club.
Thirty of those players are headed to the next level of the game, signing for various colleges around the country, including Caleb Yoon, who’s headed to Sonoma State after 12 years with Legacy.
“Legacy has helped me get to this point by developing me as a player, a person, and a teammate,” Yoon said. “The biggest thing Legacy has helped me with is developing a love for the game. Once I started to really get into soccer, Legacy provided me the platform to compete and challenge myself, as well as providing the coaches who taught me so much over the years.”
“What helped me play in college is the important looks I was getting when playing at showcases and ECNL events,” Yoon added.
While Yoon’s story is common among Legacy players, it’s not the same path that everyone has chosen to take.
Take, for instance, Lillianna Rodriguez, who played for the club for nine years and will now head to UCLA to focus on academics.
Rodriguez still plans to continue to play at the club level in college and she will use the lessons learned during her time at Legacy to help guide her through the next chapter of her life as she studies to become a civil engineer.
“Legacy has definitely taught me to work hard,” Rodriguez said. “Your spot on the team is never guaranteed so every year you have to continue to work hard to achieve your goals.”
“Being a part of Legacy has also taught me responsibility, punctuality, and teamwork,” she added. “I learned to always bring both uniforms and to clean up the cones after we finished a drill. I learned to be on time to practice and games and to take practice seriously for the limited time you’re there.”
“I am constantly working with my teammates by encouraging and pushing them to be the best, as they do for me,” Rodriguez concluded. “These are all life skills that will be essential in the work field and even in my education. I learned them at a young age and Legacy kept instilling these good habits in me during my nine years at the club.”
The seniors were each asked to fill out a Google form explaining their favorite memories from playing with Legacy and most picked out a specific tournament, trip, team dinner, or coach they remember.
But some were hyper specific in their responses.
“My favorite Davis Legacy memory was every time there was a tournament hosted by us,” said Zayn Dmeiri, who played for Davis for 11 years. “I’d open the car door when arriving at the first game and hear our tournament playlist blasting and games happening all around. Every time I experienced it, it was just as good as the last. The environment has always gotten me ready to play and is a core memory when recalling my soccer experience as a whole.”
As each of the 79 seniors move on from the club, Davis Legacy would like to wish them all the best in their future endeavors.
“We’re so proud of the young people who come through our program and move on to do great things with their lives,” said Legacy Executive Director David Robertson. “This class proved itself exemplary during their time with the club. It’s bittersweet to see our kids graduate, but they know that Davis Legacy is, and will always be, their home.”