By Jane Y. Kim and Armand Manoukian
The 13th Pan American Maccabi Games are set to take place in Santiago, Chile, during winter break, from December 28th to January 4th. At the event, Jewish soccer teams from all over the Western Hemisphere will gather to compete but also to celebrate their common heritage.
After being watched by scouts for the USA team, La Cañada High School’s junior Sam Adida was selected to participate in this year’s Games.
Coach Alex Harrison said, “It’s a great accomplishment for Sam as he has been working very hard to improve on his game, and to be selected to represent the USA is an amazing honor. I’m proud of him and honored he is part of our program.”
In the 2014-2015 season, Sam contributed greatly to the success of the team, scoring six goals and adding four assists. Sam’s contribution helped the team reach the CIF Semifinals for the first time since 2007 and make its first ever appearance in the CIF Southern California Regionals. The current junior plays the position of center back for the Spartans and is the Boys’ Varsity Soccer Captain for the 2015-2016 season.
Sam said that his professional soccer inspiration is Thiago Silva who plays for Paris Saint-Germain. Like Adida, Silva plays the position of center back.
“My family motivates me the most, especially my brother, Abie Adida. He is a positive influence, along with my parents and school friends, who inspire me to perform to the best of my ability,” said Sam.
In the future, the current junior sees himself playing Division I soccer in college, but expects his professional soccer journey to end there.
“I’m excited for Sam to get to travel so far away from home and play the sport he enjoys so much, while meeting new people and seeing new things. It’s a wonderful experience and I hope he can share his experience with the team upon his return,” said Coach Harrison.
Overall, this is an amazing opportunity for Sam and we wish him the best of luck in the Maccabi Games.
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LA CANADA, PROUD AND GRAND. ALMA MATER SHALL FOREVER STAND.