Not unlike most kids in Orange County, Arturo Molina’s soccer career began when his father signed him up for a local recreational league team.
“I started playing soccer when I was about six years old,” says Molina. “Ever since then, I’ve loved the sport. I’ve played it my entire life, I continue to play it, and I know that I’ll be playing it in my future.”
The Servite High School senior plays right fullback for the Friars, and is looking to help lead the program to a fourth consecutive Trinity League Championship this season. His love for the game is simple.
“For me it boils down to one thing—it’s fun,” says the 18-year-old. “I love playing it. When you score a goal, it’s the best feeling ever. When you make a great defensive stop, it’s the best feeling ever. I live for those moments.”
His love for soccer is only matched by how much Molina enjoys playing the sport with his Servite brothers, an aspect of the game he admits will be hard to replace. As he prepares for his final year as a Friar, Molina hopes to make an impact on his team beyond the pitch.
“Arty has incredible endurance and is both steady and reliable,” says Servite varsity soccer head coach, Jon Spencer. “He consistently puts others before himself and is all about working for the team and the team’s goals over his own. We expect Arty to be part of another strong defense this season, and his leadership will be key to that.”
His years in the game have taught Molina that “teamwork cannot be understated” and that success in the game, and in life, is all about staying focused.
“The greatest challenge in soccer is definitely remaining focused for 90 minutes. I’ve really set that as a goal for myself, not only in soccer, but in my life, to remain focused and determined in achieving my goals. I think that’s a really important lesson that I’ve taken from soccer.”
Off the field, Molina serves the community by sharing his love for soccer with at-risk youth through Higher Ground, a local nonprofit organization.
“It’s a great way to combine the sport that we love with the sport that these children love, and at the same time, teach them not only soccer skills but empowerment,” says Molina. “That’s the real goal of the program.”
Molina desires to continue playing soccer, but is also focused on studying computer science as his next step in college. The Orange resident looks to his parents for support and his faith for comfort.
“If we lose, if we win, it doesn’t matter,” says Molina. “I still have God. I still have my parents. I still have those I love. And I see God reflected in that. Overall, that’s comforting to me, and I find strength in that comfort.”