Photo courtesy of Kaila Sargema

Kaila Sargema, number 21, runs the field for an attempt to score against Niagara University.

November 16, 2015

Kaila Sargema steps up her game for CSU soccer

By Madison Lomas

Kaila Sargema, from Valencia, Calif., has played soccer since she was 7 years old. It quickly became a passion that has taken her across the country to play soccer at Cleveland State University.

Sargema is a junior business marketing major at Cleveland State, just having finished her third season as a forward on the women’s soccer team. She is not just any student athlete. She has accomplished many achievements, ending her junior year with a bang.

“I trained all the time with two or three teams and had private training and if I wasn’t training, I was playing for fun with my friends,” Sargema said. “I had the goal of playing college soccer probably at the age of 11 and knew I was going to achieve it.”

“My goals coming into the season were to be top goal scorer, make an all-league team and be offensive player of the year,” Sargema continued. “I achieved two of these three goals and am looking forward to achieving all these goals next season and even more.”

It took more than just a phone call and a plane ticket for Sargema to get where she is today. She tore her meniscus and ACL during her junior year of high school, which is the most important year for college recruiting.

“A lot of schools [lost] interest in me and this made me extremely frustrated,” Sargema said. “I made a highlight video that helped me show coaches how I play because I physically couldn’t on the field.”

This year alone, she has achieved Horizon League Athlete of the Week and Top Scorer for the entire Cleveland State team, with six goals and two assists this season. She also made Second Team All-League, which is a group consisting of the top players in the Horizon League, decided by all of the coaches in the conference.

“Kaila is a player that puts herself in goal scoring situations on the field,” Sonia Curvelo, Cleveland State’s women’s soccer coach, said. “I have admired her ability to step up for us when we need her to in big games.”

The Horizon League Playoffs just ended, as the Vikings lost against Northern Kentucky University, 1-0.

“Even though we didn’t make it as far as we wanted to, we still achieved a lot of things as a team and became better everyday,” Sargema said.

Sargema and her team had a strong season winning five home games in a row. While the season may be over, they are already working hard for the spring off-season.

“Conditioning and staying in shape is one of my big goals for this upcoming spring season,” Sargema said. “As a team, we have a spring season where we play a couple of scrimmages and train every week until the end of April.”

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