If the soccer ball whips across grass, through the defenders and hits the back of the next, Leo Gutierrez is usually the one who kicked it. So far this season at Salpointe High School, he is averaging about 2 goals per game.

“We’re half way through his junior year and of the 35 goals we have scored he has 26 of them,” Wolfgang Weber, his coach, said.

Weber has coached the Salpointe team for the last four decades and he said only a few people have scored over 100 goals. He said he wouldn’t be surprised if Gutierrez scored his 100th goal this season.

“When you watch him play, there’s that fluidity when he receives the ball and moves on and the ability in the box to out dribble opponents,” Weber said.

For Gutierrez, soccer is his life and something he has loved doing ever since he was little.

“It feels good to score and to look at your parents and your teammates on the sidelines,” he said.

But it’s more than winning games and scoring goals. He said it’s the feeling of success and accomplishment when the team works together to win the game.

“It’s a really good thing to represent the school, which not only good on the sports side, but it’s good academically too,” he said. “And just being around these people who I love and I call more than friends, more like brothers. And helping them win and seeing the smiles on their faces when we win games together I like that.”

This sport has taught him life skills like working together and communication. So Gutierrez said he hopes to play professionally one day or even for a college team.

“I’d be the dream to play pro,” he said. “But I also really care about my education so playing at the college level would be the dream.”

His coaches including Weber hope to get him playing on a Major League Soccer academy team.

“The MLS teams themselves have academies and if we can get him set up maybe next summer that would be good,” Weber said. “And if not, we’ll try again.”

Because Gutierrez can’t imagine a day without playing soccer.

“The feeling of stepping onto the field and scoring a goal is unmatched and it’s something I can see myself doing for the rest of my life,” he said.



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