Student athletes look forward to career at Amherst
While many students stop playing sports after graduation, few leave Wayland High School with long term goals for their athletic careers.
Seniors Tyler Mordas and Nico Pascual-Leone both intend to continue their athletic careers through college. Both were recruited by Amherst College in western Massachusetts. Mordas will be playing football while Pascual-Leone will be playing soccer.
“[The Amherst College coaches] were the ones who emailed me first after a tournament, and then it was just staying on top of them and making sure they knew where I was playing and when,” Pascual-Leone said.
Although the school reached out first to both Pascual-Leone and Mordas, the process of being recruited proved stressful. Mordas’s first experience with the college was at Amherst’s football day camp. Liking what they saw, Amherst coaches asked Mordas to send a film of him playing.
“It was a stressful, very elongated process because you have to keep emailing coaches, they call you once a week, you have to go to camps and you have to put your name out there. But in the end, if you can get recruited to go to a college you normally wouldn’t be able to get into, I think it’s worth it,” said Mordas.
But even after the recruiting process ended, both athletes were not able to relax as they planned ahead to prepare for the fall season.
“I’ll need to stay in shape for the preseason, but there’s no certain requirements or anything. I might try to get in better shape, but overall it’s going to be the same thing,” Pascual-Leone said.
The Amherst College Football Program requires Mordas to stay fit for the next football season. The program sent Mordas a four day lifting and running workout that is required in order to be ready for the fall.
“It’s a lot more preparation, but I think it’s going to be a lot better playing field, so I need to prepare myself,” said Mordas.
As for their plans to play after college, both athletes want to keep their options open. Although Pascual-Leone is thinking of enrolling pre-med, he has not ruled out a career in professional soccer.
“I’ve considered the possibility of having a trial with some team, but I have to think more about it and what it would mean for the future, especially considering soccer players end their careers at 30,” Pascual-Leone said.
Recruitment into Amherst College has already opened many possibilities for Pascual-Leone and Mordas.
“Once I realized I could get recruited, I wanted to use it, see where I could go, see what I could do and see that I could get into a better school than I would be able to just with my grades,” Mordas said. “I think that’s when I tried to really push and find schools that were really good for me and that I could achieve academically and on the field.”