Lakeland senior captain Nicolas DeSantis played two years on the Hornets’ boys varsity soccer squad, being named All-Section and All-League this season.
DeSantis, a defensive midfielder, drew high praise from Hornet coach Tim Hourahan after a 2-0 loss at rival Yorktown on Oct. 17.
“DeSantis has been our best player game in and game out this season,” Hourahan said. “Ball winner and flat out work rate, is the engine of our team.”
How old were you when you started playing soccer and what got you started?
I was 5 when I started and my father got me started by signing me up for rec soccer.
What is your favorite thing about being on the soccer team at Lakeland?
It is a family and no matter what you can always fall back and trust your family.
What is your favorite team activity or pregame or postgame ritual that you share with your teammates?
My favorite pregame ritual is that one of the other captains, usually Ryan Brannigan, writes a sign saying an inspirational word or our team saying, which was “nightmare” this year, and we would all hit it before we go out on the field
Who has been your biggest role model over the years and what have you learned from them?
My father, because he always tells me to never give up and always pushes me to try my hardest.
Tell us one thing about yourself that not a lot of people know?
I am a multi-sport athlete. Most people think that I just do soccer but I do wrestling and track and field as well.
Do you plan on continuing playing soccer in college? Tell us about where you are going to school and why you chose it?
I do plan on playing soccer in college and am undecided as to where I am going.
Do you know what you want to study in college? If yes, what are you planning on studying and why?
I want to study mechanical engineering in college because I like to figure out how things work with one another and how things interact.
Who is your favorite professional athlete and pro (or college) sports team?
My favorite professional athlete is David Villa. My favorite professional sports team is the NYCFC team because it is easy to get tickets and watch them play.
What is your favorite music to listen to warming up for a game?
I like to listen to classic rock and some light metal music.
If you could have one superpower, what would it be and why?
I would like to have the superpower of invisibility because I think it would be very easy and funny to prank people.
If you could pick one place to visit on vacation that you’ve never been to, where would you go and why?
I would visit Italy because that is where my grandparents grew up and I always wanted to see where they lived.
What is your favorite food to eat before or after a game?
I don’t usually eat before a game and I have no preference for food after the game.
Best place to eat in Yorktown and why?
Bob-B-Q’s because they have really good mac and cheese and chicken tenders.
What’s the go-to app on your phone and why?
Snapchat because I like to see what people are up to and it is an easier form of communication to my peers.
For a young athlete growing up in the Lakeland district, what would you tell them about the experience of being part of the soccer team and why should they go out for the team?
The Lakeland soccer team is a great experience because the team spends so much time together that we are basically family and no matter what family is there when you need them. The team also does activities throughout the entire year such as the winter league or the club team.
These leagues not only keep the players active but are very fun to play in. I still remember all the years I played in those leagues and will probably never forget them because of the amount of memories that I made by simply having fun with my teammates.
So if anyone is contemplating joining the Lakeland soccer team, they should definitely do it not only to have fun but to be able to play for something bigger than themselves, to be able to play for the Lakeland soccer shield.
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