Guatemala-born player to join men’s soccer team

By Michael Dominguez

Bryan Hernandez is one of the newest players to join the East Los Angeles College men’s soccer team for the upcoming 2020 spring season.  

Hernandez was born in Guatemala in 2002. Herandez said  his parents left him for a better opportunity with other members of his family.

 Later, Hernandez was reunited with his parents once he and an uncle made it to America at a young age. 

Herandez said growing up, he would be made fun of by other kids because of his dark skin color and the fact that he couldn’t speak English very well. Herandez said he started playing soccer at the age of seven or eight.

Hernandez said, “ I fell in love with the sport and kept playing and my dad would train me and show me how to play.”  He also said that he used to play club soccer and even got a few offers to play for club teams in Mexico and other clubs, but he could not join because he did not have any papers to play.

 Herandez comes from Linda Esperanza Marquez High School in Huntington Park CA. Hernandez and the high school team went on to win 25 games this season.  

Hernandez was key this season as a halfback, midfielder and a fullback. He had four goals and five assists in 15 games played this season. 

His input on the season earned him  second team all Southern Team in the Los Angeles City Section. 

“Playing soccer is such a great sport because it helped me get out of my comfort zone and meeting many new people and not only that, but it helped me get away from negative things,” Hernandez said.

 He said that he personally doesn’t believe that he is the best soccer player “I believe that every day in the soccer industry there is always something new to learn, no matter if I get the chance to become a pro. I believe that I’ll always learn something new in playing this sport,” he said. 

 Hernandez said that the two people he looks up to are his parents. He said his parents put in the hard work and the sacrifice to give him a better education and better lifestyle. 

 He said that his parents would also give up any extra things to help his soccer career advance in his skills.

 He said he feels that being in the soccer industry would be a great way to repay them in life for what they have done.  Hernandez said that the ELAC men’s soccer coaching staff made him feel very welcomed and treated him well, which got him more interested in the campus.

 He said after his time at ELAC, he hopes to transfer to a four-year college with an interest in physical therapy. He also said that soccer encourages him to keep his GPA up and it drives him to do better on the field and in his studies.  Hernandez said that he’s keeping in shape during the quarantine by running around the park, doing laps and always keeping a soccer ball around him.          

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