Isaiah Villalobos Adds To Sanger’s Firepower

By May 6, 2021Feature

“To be honest, there is pressure. We want to win another season.”

Sanger‘s Isaiah Villalobos is racking up the goals in his sophomore year and adding firepower to an already loaded Apaches club. But it’s not just his scoring ability that has made the sophomore a standout. Rather, it’s also his willingness to learn and bounce back from setbacks.

The sophomore’s maturity was especially evident in a road game against Madera High last month. Villalobos, who scored the only goal of the game against the Coyotes, stayed composed to overcome some frustrating misses and unfavorable decisions from the referees.

The sophomore said it’s his teammates and coaches who have been helping him fight through adversity.

“I kept putting my head down. They told me to keep my head up and keep going,” Villalobos said after the win against Madera. “The bond we carry is what makes me keep going and get better.”

Although he is sometimes tempted to respond with anger when problems arise during a match, the sophomore said his coaches are already helping him make progress in that aspect of his development.

“I’m learning how to be disciplined, kind of keep control of my temper,” he said.

Playing for the state champs, Villalobos understands that maximum effort is always expected. So he listens attentively as the team huddles for about 20 minutes following a 1-0 win against Madera, with the coaches focusing on the areas that need to be improved.

“Today was not that good. Everybody was off,”
Villalobos said after the victory. “We needed a pep-talk to keep on going and stay up. The next day, we will come ready.”

The standout sophomore admits that he feels pressure while playing for a powerhouse program. Still, the pressure doesn’t stop him from enjoying the beautiful game.

“To be honest, there is pressure. We want to win another season,”
Villalobos said. “But we just come out here to play soccer, play the game we love.”

The Sanger native, who learned soccer from his father, has loved the game since he first started walking.

“I love this game. It’s my happiness,” he said. “I like to come out and play with my team and just be part of a team that’s really successful.”

Now playing for the team he always wanted to represent, the sophomore doesn’t take any moments for granted.

“All through middle school, I was trying to make varsity my first year,” he said. “I just love it.”

Leave a Reply