Chasen Brutocao began playing soccer when he was four years old, first through AYSO and then on a club team. Now the 18-year-old is at Santa Margarita Catholic High School defending the pitch for the Eagles.
“I just love the competitive nature of soccer,” says Brutocao. “You are always competing. I just love how the game is so fast-paced. It’s tough to play for a full 90 minutes, but I enjoy the challenge.”
The three-year varsity starter has found his position as a right back, a role that has allowed Brutocao to play both sides of the ball.
“As a senior, I was really able to be effective both on offense and defense,” says Brutocao. “I really enjoy that versatility.”
As one of the team’s captains, Brutocao hopes his hard work on and off the field serves as a model to his teammates.
“I’m not the loudest player on the field,” says Brutocao. “I’m more quiet…but I try to lead by example and by work ethic. And I hope it inspires them to work hard as well.”
Brutocao’s impact on the program has left a lasting mark, as the Eagle’s coaching staff feels whoever plays his position next season will have big shoes to fill.
“Chasen is highly respected by the coaching staff and his teammates because of his work rate, dedication and commitment to the team,” says Santa Margarita boys soccer varsity head coach, Wade Fraser. “His positive attitude and the way he plays his position make him irreplaceable.”
Before entering high school, Brutocao struggled with his skills, putting him on the verge of quitting the game. But he worked tirelessly to improve himself, a path that has made him grateful for his place on the soccer field.
“If you want to be successful, you have to be a hard worker,” says Brutocao. “You can’t take what you have for granted.”
Brutocao also runs the 400-meter race and 4×400 meter relay for the Eagles track and field team, in addition to serving as a member of the school’s Link Crew and Student Ambassadors. Additionally, he serves his community through Serra’s Pantry & Outreach at Mission Basilica, a place where he can put his faith into action.
“I know that regardless of what I do on the soccer field, God will protect me,” says Brutocao. “I know I can’t control everything, so the things I can’t control I leave to God.”
The San Juan Capistrano resident is headed to the University of Notre Dame in the fall, where he will study computer science or business. Brutocao’s credits his family for much of his success, especially his father.
“He’s the reason why I am who I am today,” says Brutocao. “He’s helped me see the importance of hard work. Seeing his hard work inspires me to also be a hard worker…both in academics and on the soccer field.”