Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Long Journey Leads Luis Ocejo to Senior CLASS Award

Stetson’s senior defender and the 2011 A-Sun Defensive Player of the Year, Luis Ocejo holds a 3.8 GPA studying finance and earned numerous accolades including CoSIDA Academic All-District and NSCAA Third Team All-America Scholar.

To go along with the previous honors, Luis has also been nominated as one of 30 Senior CLASS Award candidates in the country.

The Senior CLASS Award is meant to highlight Division I seniors that have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition and focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.

Ocejo is from Mexico City but through his playing experience at the Pendleton School for IMG Athletes in Bradenton, Florida he was able to find Stetson. “I liked that Stetson was a small school and the classes had about 20-30 people in them,” Luis said. ”I also liked their soccer program and that is one of the main reasons I came here, because of soccer and the rich tradition here at Stetson.”

From the beginning, Ocejo had high aspirations of pursuing a soccer career. At the age of 17 he moved to Florida to start playing for the IMG Academy and now balancing his student and athletic responsibilities he is only able to return home to Mexico City two to three times a year. Although he admits it has been difficult being away from home he is thrilled that his parents will be able to attend his senior game.

Luis takes being a leader on the field and in the community to heart and explained, “Since I was a freshman I always wanted to be a leader and help the team and help as many people as I can.” He helps his community when he travels back to Mexico City by volunteering at a nursing home at least two or three times a week and while in DeLand he often volunteers at the local Humane Society.

Ocejo attributes his success on the field to his team and even when asked about how he felt about being named a Senior CLASS candidate he remained humble.

“It is a very big honor but I couldn’t have accomplished this without my team. If my team does well I do well and that benefits me as well.”

The Senior Class candidates will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the regular season, and those 10 names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one male candidate and one female candidate who best exemplify excellence in the four Cs of community, classroom, character and competition.

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