For The Madera Tribune
Madera South boys soccer player Christian Meza signs his National Letter of Intent to play soccer at Simpson University.
When the opportunity came for Madera South boys soccer player Christian Meza to play with two Stallions’ teammates in college, he jumped at the chance.
Meza officially signed his National Letter of Intent to play soccer at Simpson University with classmate David Vasquez and 2019 MSHS graduate Abraham Vasquez.
“Going to college with my two other friends is great,” Meza said. “We just had a good connection. When we won Valley and State, it was great. I was the left back, my friend, David Vasquez, was the left wing. Abraham was the right wing. Last year, we just had amazing chemistry.”
Meza, who has been working out at his house and doing school meetings over the Internet, signed with Simpson about three weeks ago.
He applied to San Jose State and Fresno City College. He would have gone to Fresno State if any soccer opportunities didn’t come to fruition.
“I got a call from the coach and he wanted to look at me,” Meza said. “I went out there for orientation. Everyone was so nice. The staff, coaches and staff made me feel welcomed there. Simpson was the only school that wanted me to play soccer. I was all for it. It’s a four-year college and I can get my education. I’m down with it.”
Meza said he credits an assist to Abraham Vasquez, who showed the Simpson coach a video of his play.
“Abraham was the one that showed the coach a video of me,” Meza said. “It was last year, I did a cross to Abraham against Madera. It was like a 40 yard cross and Abraham headed it in. The coach saw that and said he had been looking for a left back. I went out and the coach liked me. He said he liked that I help up on offense and also come back to defend. It was just a nice time.”
Next season, there will be four players from last year’s Div. III NorCal State and Central Section championship team playing at a four-year college, with three at Simpson (Christian Garcia is playing at Azusa Pacific).
“Christian put in the work and it paid off,” Madera South head coach Enrique Garcia said. “He has the speed, ability, technique, touch and shot.”
Garcia is quite proud of the foundation last year’s team laid down. His brother, Christian Garcia, and Vasquez were the first from Madera South to go straight to a four-year college and two more are following their footsteps.
“They paved the way for the next generation,” Garcia said. “It speaks loudly what we’re tying to do at Madera South. It’s to get these kids to the next level. We’ve always had talent. We either lacked talent or the want to get to the next level. These kids show that it’s possible. Not just the junior college, but to a four-year school. It’s possible to get out of Madera and get looked at by a higher college.”
Meza carried a 3.1 grade point average at Madera South. He plans to major in business administration.
“I want to start a business,” he said. “I can get a lot of jobs in that field or even start my own business.”
Meza is still on Cloud 9 when thinking about how cohesive and great last year’s team was.
“It was so unreal,” Meza said. “It was just a good feeling. Coach Fernando (Delgadillo) told us to keep our head up. Everyone was so dedicated. The whole team had a good connection with each other. We were such a team.”
Although this year’s team didn’t reach where last year’s team did, Meza was still satisfied about his senior season.
“We just fell short this year and things didn’t go our way,” he said. “I felt like I did good. I still had my assists. I had the same assists as last year. Playing defense, you don’t get any stats. I always tried to put my name out there and help out.”
Meza is excited about continuing his soccer career, but also to have more opportunities to play with two other teammates.
“Maybe we’ll live with each other,” he said. “It’s like a four-and-a-half hour drive. We can carpool and it will help out a lot. We all have that connection.”