J-D Soccer Stars Make Their College Plans Official

Alex Pomeroy and Connor Ball

Staff Writers

Sophia Dimkopoulos (left) and Alex Catanzerite (Right) sign their National Letter of Intent. Dimkopoulos will be playing soccer at Siena College, and Catanzerite will be playing soccer for Bucknell University. 

Sophia Dimkopoulos (left) and Alex Catanzerite (Right) sign their National Letter of Intent. Dimkopoulos will be playing soccer at Siena College, and Catanzerite will be playing soccer for Bucknell University. 

Jamesville-DeWitt High School Varsity Girls Soccer seniors and long time teammates, Alex Catanzarite and Sophia Dimkopoulos gave their team another reason to cheer on Feb. 3. By signing their National Letters of Intent, the two soccer stars solidified their soccer careers in front of eager families and friends.

This is the first time in the J-D girls soccer program’s history two student athletes have signed to a Division I school. “It shows their hard work and dedication they put into themselves,” said Varsity Girls Soccer Head Coach Hayley Nies, adding that she hopes the young players look to the two girls and see what it takes to reach that level.

Though it just became official, Dimkopoulos verbally committed to Siena College in Albany, NY to play soccer in October of 2015. The recruiting process was a lot of fun for Dimkopoulos and through it all she was able to visit multiple colleges. Many factors affected her choice but Dimkopoulos said that once she visited Siena, she knew she wanted to go there. She had many reasons to choose Siena like  a close proximity to her family, great coaches and an amazing soccer program. At Siena, Dimkopoulos plans to continue her soccer career and major in business.

Before this became a reality, Dimkopoulos set her eyes on pursuing her passion when she was 12 years old. At the time, her club team, Syracuse Developmental Academy had just won regionals in the week after Halloween. It was then she realized that soccer is what she wanted to focus on and pursue in college because her love for the game was ignited. “(Playing) is a way to just forget everything that is happening and for me to focus on what I love,” said Dimkopoulos.

Looking through the years Dimkopoulos has created unforgettable memories. Just last year, Dimkopoulos and SDA headed to Texas to compete at the US Youth Soccer National Championship. Despite this enormous achievement, Dimkopoulos values the team dinners and the car rides with family and friends more than championships because they have brought her closer to her friends.

Dimkopoulos has gotten very far on her love for the game, but it was the support from her friends and family that pushed her to the elite level. “I thank my coaches and parents but also, more importantly, all of my teammates because without them, we wouldn’t have had a team with great chemistry and wouldn’t have had so much success,” said Dimkopoulos.

Lifelong friend of Dimkopoulos, Catanzarite has also gained an enormous amount of success with soccer. Catanzarite signed to Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Penn. “Signing next to Alex made it so much more special,” said Dimkopoulos, for the two have them have been teammates on SDA and J-DHS for a long time.

Catanzarite was looking for a balance of academics and athletics and believes Bucknell was the perfect option for her. Her major is undecided at the moment.

Her phenomenal stats over the course of four years on the J-D Girls Varsity Soccer team gave her this opportunity. In her four years on the varsity team, she scored 85 goals and had 44 assists. This includes the 35 goals and 12 assists she had in her senior year.

Following her amazing senior year she was named All-CNY Girls Soccer Player of the Year.

Catanzarite as a 5-year-old set her eyes on continuing this sport she loved.  Catanzarite thanks her family, who has pushed her to work hard and for her coaches for guiding her along to her tremendous success in soccer.