Jelove Mira had always been a gentleman. He played soccer like cartoon Chip ‘n’ Dale (“No, I insist, after you). Too afraid to crash into an opponent, the Lighthouse Christian Academy senior used to let any and every player win the ball.
Then, coach gave him some drills to improve his physicality, steel his nerve and amp up his testosterone.
No more Mr. Nice Guy.
On Thursday, some bearish defending helped the Saints defeat last year’s league champions, Newbury Park. LCA came from behind to upset 2-1.
At the stopper position, Jelove was hassling and harrying, tugging and shoving, stabbing legs around opponent’s feet searching for the ball, pushing the outer envelope of permissive aggression to clamp the Gators’ bite.
Oh, he was nasty and mean.
The formerly meek-and-mild student who appeared more apt for a placid round of summer croquet suddenly became the Abrams tank racing around the backfield smashing anything that dared to enter his turf. He beat players to balls and launched them back into attack. Read the rest of the story.