|Studies in contrast: Seniors Timo Torres and David Miranda have different roles for SSHS soccer|
|Bobby "Butch" Burney | News-Telegram Sports Editor|
Feb. 18, 2005 - Sulphur Springs seniors Timo Torres and David Miranda are studies in contrast, except when it comes to doing what it takes for the Wildcat to win soccer games.
Torres, a right midfielder, prefers scoring goals on offense and is a fiery, physical player. Miranda, one of the top students in the senior class, would rather play defense and is a quiet leader.
But, they both do what it takes to make the Wildcats a winner, said head coach Andy Holt.
"Timo really loves and enjoys playing soccer. He's really developed over the last two years," Holt said. "He's coachable, and I enjoy coaching him.
"David's the epitome of coachable. He does exactly what you ask and never questions. He plays right mid fullback and has played extremely well."
Together, they have helped the Wildcats to an 11-6 overall record, 5-0 in District 13-4A play going into a key match-up at North Lamar tonight. Game time is 7:15 p.m.
The Wildcats had three goals starting the year: win the district championship, win a playoff game, and win 20 games. So far, they are on course for all three.
Holt said part of the reason is the mindset of Torres and Miranda. Torres does his part to set up the forwards to score. Like a point guard in basketball, it's his duty to pass the ball to the open player.
"He does an awesome job of crossing the ball," Holt explained. "The thing for the outside mids is to distribute the ball, set up the forwards or a midfielder running through, and he understands that. He'd like to score, but he knows what he needs to do."
Torres is also a physical player who is known for his aggressiveness.
"Timo brings some emotion to the game and to our team. He'll get in there and get after it," the coach explained. "He's not afraid to get in there and bump some bodies. Soccer's a physical game, and you've got to have some guys who are like that."
An aspiring Border Patrol, Torres grew up playing soccer, the national pastime of Mexico, where his dad, Jose Torres, was raised and his grandmother still lives.
"I started playing soccer, I guess when I was four or five," Torres said. "I was raised around it, and that's what I love to do is play soccer."
Though he played forward growing up, the transition to midfielder hasn't been too difficult.
"At forward, you don't have to play any defense - your responsibility is to score," he explained. "For some people, it might be difficult to transition if they haven't played a lot of soccer. But, for people who are around it, you get the gist of what you need to do."
Miranda, on the other hand, enjoys playing defense.
"I like playing defense, that's where I play. I like being a defender, not necessarily scoring, but just helping out and contributing in a game," he said. "Everybody else likes scoring - I'm not going to say I don't like scoring - but I'd rather defend."
Ranked No. 9 in his class, Miranda is taking concurrent physics and government and AP calculus in addition to competing in UIL academics, running cross country and playing guitar at Primera Iglesia Bautista where his father is pastor.
He has been accepted at both Dallas Baptist University and UT-Austin, though he's unsure which university he'll pick and his major.
He was sure, though, of his goals going into his senior season.
"I wanted to be a starter this year, and I pushed myself to run cross country so I would be in shape," Miranda said. "I wanted to help the team to win the district title, and since we lost two of our best defenders from last year, I wanted to step in and help the team."
A part-time starter last season, Miranda has filled a spot at fullback.
"He does a great job of defending. In one-on-one situations is where he excels," Coach Holt said. "He's quiet, but he leads by example. He's very intelligent in the classroom and on the field as well."