A life, a love, a sport

From a young age, J.T. Trott has chosen and cherished soccer

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A life, a love, a sport

Approaching the ball, senior J.T. Trott gets ready to kick during the BV West game.

Approaching the ball, senior J.T. Trott gets ready to kick during the BV West game.

Approaching the ball, senior J.T. Trott gets ready to kick during the BV West game.

Approaching the ball, senior J.T. Trott gets ready to kick during the BV West game.

Jacob Butler, Staff Writer

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Cleat slamming into the ball. Ball rifling through the air. Ball smacking arm. Arm cracking. The young goalkeeper’s wrist swelled up like a balloon, but he wouldn’t leave. They wrapped it up in bubble wrap because his day wasn’t done. He was trying out for his first premier soccer team, and 12-year-old J.T. Trott would earn himself a spot on the squad.

“When he tried out for his first premier team, he had a broken bone in his arm,” Trott’s mother, Sandy Trott, said. “Someone shot the ball at him and broke his arm. There was so much swelling that they put bubble wrap around it. He played through it and made the team.”

From the age of 4, J.T. Trott has been living, breathing, and loving soccer. After progressing from recreational soccer to premier club soccer to varsity high school soccer to now looking at playing NCAA Div. II soccer with Azusa Pacific University, he has made the beautiful game an inseparable part of his life.

Growing up in an athletic family, young Trott was infused with a love for sports. Both parents were college athletes and both of his older sisters played soccer, so it was only natural for him to carry on the tradition.

“He was on the field kicking the ball since he could walk,” Sandy said. “His sisters both played, and eventually playing on the sideline wasn’t satisfying enough anymore.”

Up until sixth grade, Trott participated in recreational soccer. After playing for the premier team Vantage for two years, Trott switched to Toca FC where he plays currently. He also didn’t only play club soccer. Trott was a member of the varsity soccer team for KCC for all four years of high school.

“He’s one of the few people I know that could handle playing varsity soccer his freshman year,” KCC head coach Allan Chugg said. “He has always been extremely competitive, had an understanding of the game, and had a relentless work ethic.”

To play a sport, or frankly do anything with any sort of regularity, for almost a decade and a half, there must be love involved. And that is certainly the case here.

“Scoring is pretty common in most other sports, like teams score 60 points per game in basketball all the time,” Trott said. “So when you play soccer for 90 minutes and the score is 1-0, when you put in that goal it’s so much more exciting. You just get so pumped up after you score. I’ve never felt that before in any other sport.”

Although possessing a 5-foot-8-inch, unimposing figure, Trott makes an impact when his cleats touch the turf.

“He’s a strong leader,” Chugg said. “In other words, every team that we play talks about having to mark and track with him. He plays loud. He’s got great passion. He wants it done right. He makes everybody else play better. He’s an all in kind of guy. There’s not much in life that he does casually. He cares a lot. He just wants things so badly, and he exerts his will on a lot of things.”

Even as he has influenced others through soccer, so soccer has influenced him over the years. He has learned life skills via the sport that may serve him well.

“There are lots of little things in soccer. You can be two steps away from being in position or being covered. Just doing the little things can get you into a position where you can be successful,” Trott said.

A naturally gifted athlete, Trott may appear to have been custom designed for playing professional sports. It didn’t start out that way.

“I wouldn’t be able to do what I’m doing today without God. I had asthma as a child, and through my mom praying for me, we were able to figure out what was causing it. It turned out to be nutrition and so I starting avoiding what was causing it and today it’s completely gone.”

Trott is excitedly looking toward the future.

“I’m interested in Azusa Pacific because I think that is the best fit soccer program for my style of play, I know the coach and have talked with him several times, and my premier coach played at Azusa and loved it,” Trott said. “It is also a Christian school. I play soccer because I love competition and teamwork, I love playing and every time I step onto the field it is a blessing from God!”

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