Soccer and Education go Hand-in-Hand for Soccer Star

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Tri-C Soccer Player Richard Vanhorne prepares to kick a soccer ball. Photo by Emily Rohm
Tri-C Soccer Player Richard Vanhorne prepares to kick a soccer ball. Photo by Emily Rohm

By Robert Fenbers
Western Staff Reporter

Thanks to his mother’s wishes to further his education, Richard Vanhorne has found success bothon and off the field – especially being one of the top players on the Tri-C Soccer Team.

Vanhorne grew up in Jamaica most of his life. Playing sports early in life he began as a track and field athlete, but would soon discover the sport he truly loves. At the age of 13, Vanhorne began playing soccer and hasn’t looked back.

He has experienced numerous successes when winning multiple championships at Rusea’s High School in the coastal town of Lucea, Jamaica. He then joined a semiprofessional club and was captain of the U-21 team in his senior year. It seemed like professional clubs were the next step for the Jamaican star — but mother knows best.

After receiving his associate’s degree in architectural studies, his mother decided that’s not enough; that he needed a solid education.

“She said more opportunities are in the United States; that I should come over here and that’s exactly what I did,” Vanhorne said.

When he reached the States his success in Jamaica seemed to follow him, as the agents from his semiprofessional club encouraged him to pursue tryouts for professional soccer. He received a couple offers. Vanhorne was intrigued, but of course, his mother would have the last say.

He would eventually end up at a tryout in Cincinnati where he would meet his future Head Coach Devan Anderson. After talking with Anderson, Vanhorne decided to come to Tri-C.

Having been at Tri-C for two years now, Vanhorne is proud of his back-to-back 4.0 GPA. He admits this semester has been tough.

“It’s a tough year, with the traveling and the games. I’m going to try my best and see if I can get that 4.0 again,” he said. To him, education and soccer are 50/50. The balance of homework and training keeps him busy and improves his game on and off the field.

The Tri-C men’s soccer team has had a rough year. Not many wins were on the scoreboard, but you wouldn’t be able to tell that with how positive Vanhorne is.

“Staying positive is a team effort,” he said. A huge reason why the team has remained positive this year has been the close knit group of players. “We are always small,” said Vanhorne, speaking of their roster size. The group is very communicative on the field and they look out for each other.

Make no mistake Vanhorne’s favorite day is gameday. “I’ll get up two hours before a game and make breakfast – usually eggs. I love eggs,” Vanhorne said.

He would also study YouTube Soccer clips of his favorite player, New York Red Bulls Soccer player Thierry Henry, to prepare him for an upcoming game.

Since coming to Tri-C, Vanhorne has switched his major to interior design and is hoping to take his talents to the NCAA. One school he has been looking into is the University of Akron.

“They’re doing a good job; I really want to play for that school,” he said.

The University of Akron won the NCAA National Championship in Men’s Soccer in 2010. It’s too early to tell which school he will choose. One thing is for sure, it’s been his equal demeanor on education and soccer that has got him where he is today.

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