The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Not just a student of the game


The sun glared on Hughes Stadium at City College during the women’s soccer team’s afternoon practice as Assistant Coach Victor Perez stood on the field.

Not only does Perez, 20, coach for the soccer team, he is also in his sophomore year as a full-time student at City College. He plans to eventually transfer to California Polytechnic State University or Sacramento State University to major in mechanical engineering and minor in electrical engineering after two more years at City College.

“Just trying to keep my grades up,” he said.

Perez began in July as a volunteer coach for the team. As much as he loved playing, he said that coaching gives him a new perspective on the sport he loved.

“These girls—they have their attitudes here and there, but it’s fun,” Perez said. “I definitely want to keep coaching.  That’s for sure.”

Assistant Coach Karissa Gerhart, 25, said that Perez has been a patient and dedicated coach despite the obstacles the team had to overcome.

For example, the team had fewer players than usual this season, according to Gerhart, which has meant that just about every player had to play all 90 minutes of a game without getting time on the bench to rest.

“We’ve had a lot of injuries,” Gerhart said. “they’re hanging in there.”

Team Goalie Haylie Holbein, 20, said Perez helped train and refine her goalkeeping skills. She said she has been impressed with Perez’s professional and mature attitude.

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Perez said he had to overcome obstacles in his youth. He and his family emigrated from Mexico Puebla.

“I came to Sacramento when I was 4 years old,” said Perez. “I’ve been living in the same house now for 16 years.”

Perez said that his family had  financial difficulties when he was growing up. His father was the only one who had a job, but he didn’t earn enough income to support a family of  five.

“No matter how expensive the cost was when I was younger, no matter how far we had to go, [my family] would always be there.”

Perez  first picked up a soccer ball in the eighth grade. With his family’s support, Perez kept playing.

“I love when they watch me play, and I guess that’s something that always made me want to keep playing because my family’s always had my back,” Perez said.

Perez said that the women’s soccer team has also become like family to him, and he has pushed each player not give up and quit despite their obstacles. “

As they progress through their lives, they’re just going to see it’s easy to quit,” said Perez. “ That’s not something I want to see, or I want them to think that I taught them.

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