Greg Rodriguez was selected to be on the 4A all-state first team for the 2019 soccer season. (Submitted photo)

ONTARIO - Greg Rodriguez, a senior at Ontario High School, was named to the 4A all-state first team for the 2019 Oregon high school soccer season. 

The Ontario Tigers clinched the league title for the second year in a row, finishing off a historic season. 

Rodriguez, who was also voted league MVP, scored 22 goals this season. 

Rodriguez said not only did he not expect to be selected first team, he didn’t even know about the selection until he saw a news article online.

“My coach didn’t even know I got first team until I showed him the article,” Rodriguez said laughing. 

The boys soccer coach, Jaime Gonzalez, was named coach of the year this season in the Greater Oregon League. 

Rodriguez said that the highlight from his last season playing for Ontario was pulling “the hat trick against Mac-Hi.” 

A hat trick, Rodriguez explained, is soccer lingo for when an individual player scores three goals in one game. 

The reason this moment was so memorable, Rodriguez said, was because the defender from Mac-Hi playing in that game was voted co-MVP in the league along with him. 

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Rodriguez had a message for upcoming freshmen. 

“Since it’s my last year I just want to say to all the upcoming freshmen, just keep working hard because hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.” 

Rodriguez also gave a special thanks to his mother and father. 

“My mom, for sacrificing everything to keep me playing this sport,” Rodriguez said. “And my dad for teaching me everything I know.” 

Rodriguez also gave a shout out to his little brother, Jaydyn Garcia, who is currently in sixth grade. 

“He is going to be in the high school in 2022 and he is the future superstar in Ontario High School,” Rodriguez said.  

Rodriguez plans to pursue sports medicine in college after graduating, and said he will continue to play soccer, a sport he has been playing since he was 6.

Contact reporter Joe Siess: [email protected] or 541-473-3377.

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