Legends in the making: Interview with CATSOC’s Drew Ludwig
If one word comes to mind right now when you think of Men’s CATSOC, it would probably be “legendary”. This year the varsity team made it farthest in the playoffs since 2005, a monumental achievement, but suffered a devastating 2-1 loss to Cardinal Gibbons this past Tuesday. Regardless, the team performed incredibly and put on quite a show; their passion and chemistry as a team is something rare and makes them a force to be reckoned with. Yesterday I decided to sit down with one of CATSOC’s own, Drew Ludwig, and discuss the team as a whole as well as his personal soccer journey.
One of the most infamous traditions of CATSOC is jorts day. Yes, jorts day. “Each time we play Apex Friendship, we all wear jorts to school,” Drew said. He didn’t exactly love the comfort aspect of it, but it’s a long time tradition and a hilarious one, too. Drew also described the more heartfelt tradition of praying before most games. “We all usually get on one knee and we pray before games, it’s pretty special,” he added.
Undeniable Team Chemistry
When asked about the team chemistry, Drew was at a loss for words. “If I could rank our team chemistry out of a hundred, I’d give us a high eighty.” He credited quarantine for the newly established team chemistry, elaborating on the teams effort to get out and play together every day. “We would all go out to Hunter Street at like eight in the morning and just play together. We did this for about a year straight,” he added. The team was able to get an idea for each other’s playing styles-and it paid off.
Drew has many memories, but none quite compare to their playoff run this year. He described the feeling of beating Wake Forest in overtime; “It was the best feeling ever. We were all so high energy and positive.” The highly anticipated overtime games were always one of the most invigorating experiences for CATSOC. Especially during the playoffs, every minute of those games were crucial.
The Feeling of History
This year, CATSOC made it the furthest ever in playoffs since 2006-fifteen years ago. Drew said the feeling was indescribable. “I think the reason we made it this far is because of Coach Todd. After his passing we just felt so motivated to carry on his legacy and do well for him,” he said. The tragic event brought a new sense of unity to the team and surely inspired them to do their best. This year the team did incredibly and put their hearts on the line each game.
Favorite Part about CATSOC
Drew’s favorite part about CATSOC is the ever supportive bench and fans. “They’ve been so helpful,” he said. “In every game the whole bench would be standing up and celebrating every time we scored. We had so many fans in our game against Cardinal Gibbons, we definitely wouldn’t have made it this far without them.” He was so grateful for the immense support from the fans and the bench.
Drew had no hesitation answering this question and immediately credited Jake Shannon, who is also part of the CATSOC team, as his role model. “Jake is the best soccer player I’ve ever played with,” he began. “I’ve played with kids from pro teams and they’re good, but there’s just something about Jake. He works so hard and just wants it so bad. He’s never had a bad game.” Playing together since they were nine years old, Drew and Jake have developed amazing chemistry with one another. Their strong friendship has also allowed them to work together even better and become a dynamic duo.
School and Club Soccer
As a member of both a club soccer team and a school soccer team, Drew keeps quite a busy schedule. But when asked which he prefers, he immediately picked school soccer. “This year has actually made me realize how unexciting club soccer is,” he joked. “High school soccer is just so different. Every game we play has meaning in terms of standings.” He also added how he may not continue to play club soccer next year, which is a huge change for him.
Drew wasn’t quite enthusiastic about the idea of soccer in college. He’s definitely not trying to go pro or seek out any colleges to play, but he still has an undeniable passion for the game. “If I got an offer to a D2 or D3 school in-state where I’d actually play, I would take it,” he stated. For now, Drew is without a doubt going to continue making his mark as a member of CATSOC-and he wouldn’t trade it for anything.
With a phenomenal run this season, CATSOC is looking to continue their training and continue building team chemistry despite some members graduating. Drew was forever grateful for the experiences and surreal memories he had over the past few years. He will continue to play his senior year next year and looks to help the team make history again.