Alyssa Carranza more than doubled her goals scored this season in Oak Ridge’s varsity girls’ soccer team’s 7-0 non-league win over Monterey Trail on December 27.
Carranza, a senior forward, scored three goals in the game, improving her total to five this season, second on the team behind freshman Emily Lieber’s six goals. Carranza, a four-year varsity player, has accepted a scholarship to play at UC Riverside after graduating from Oak Ridge.
“Alyssa is a very technical player,” Oak Ridge coach Rino Chimienti said. “She’s a smooth player, who reads the game well. She creates a lot of opportunities for herself, and for her teammates.”
Folsom Telegraph: What are your hopes/plans for after graduation?
Alyssa Carranza: I am currently committed to UC Riverside to play soccer as a freshman, so my hopes are to continue to play the game I love.
FT: Do sports run in your family?
AC: My dad wrestled and ran cross country in high school; and my mom was a part of the swim team. Also, my older sister, Dominique, as well as my twin brother and sister, Isaac and Jasmine, have all played competitive soccer.
FT: How long have you been playing soccer and how did you get your start in it?
AC: I began my journey at the age of 4, when I lived in Arizona. My mom signed me up for a recreational team and I fell in love with the sport.
FT: Have you ever been involved in other sports?
AC: All throughout middle school I ran cross country and came in first place in the regional finals, but once I entered high school, soccer became priority.
FT: What do you like about soccer?
AC: Soccer has always been a way for me to de-stress from the everyday pressures that I may face, at school or home. On the field, I forget about all my worries and am able to focus on helping my teammates succeed. I am very competitive and winning is what drives me.
FT: How many years have you been on Oak Ridge’s varsity team?
AC: I made the varsity team as a freshman and was able to play with my older sister for her senior year.
FT: It’s usually difficult to score in soccer. What’s the feeling when you are able to put the ball by the keeper for a goal?
AC: I can’t explain the feeling I get when I score; the high it gives me is indescribable.
FT: How do you feel you’ve played so far this season? Critique your game.
AC: As the team captain, I have helped strengthen the team’s connection, especially due to the fact that this year we consist of many underclassmen. I consider myself a team player and I always give 100 percent when I step on the field.
FT: Your team is very young with almost half the team freshmen and sophomores. How do you feel the team has played so far this season? What has the team been doing well?
AC: Personally, even though we may have a younger team, I believe this is the strongest group of players I’ve been a part of at the high school level. We have learned to communicate well on the field and are able to motivate one another to obtain the win.
FT: What are your goals for this season?
AC: The last three years, we have been able to make it to playoffs, but for my last year, I hope to help my team advance even further.
FT: What is your favorite class in school?
AC: My favorite subject has always been math because it has always been my strength. This year has been challenging, but I continue to strive for success.
FT: Favorite Food?
AC: This one’s easy, Mexican. My mom makes the best tamales.
FT: Favorite music?
AC: My playlist consists of a mix of R&B, Latin, and pop.
FT: Do you have any pets? Tell us about them.
AC: I have a Shih Tzu-Maltese mix, Coco, that my parents gave me for Christmas when I was 5. He is my roommate and never fails to comfort me.
FT: Do you have any hobbies? What do you like to do in your free time?
AC: In my free time, I enjoy hanging out with my friends and family.
FT: What inspires you in sports?
AC: Ever since I was a little girl, I've dreamt of the next step in my soccer career, and finally seeing it all come together inspires me. This has proven that if you work hard for something you really want; you can and will achieve it. Dreams do come true.
FT: Is there a particular job or profession you’d like to have one day?
AC: I really want to study in the medical field, maybe physical therapy or dentistry.