There are many moving parts to any soccer team and the Huntington High School girls’ squad is no different. Every Blue Devil player has an important job to do. Senior Jenny Salmeron and junior Kemberlin Hernandez-Veliz have been filling increasingly large roles on the field, helping to lift the team into playoff contention.
Ms. Salmeron and Ms. Hernandez-Veliz both scored goals in last Saturday’s 4-0 shutout of Central Islip. Every Huntington player has been doing their part this season. It’s one of the reasons the Blue Devils came into the week with a 4-2-3 record.
Ms. Salmeron and Ms. Hernandez-Veliz are both longtime players who are seeing all of their hard work over the years paying off this fall.
“I started playing soccer when I was four years old,” Ms. Salmeron said. “I’ve played in many different soccer leagues as I was growing up. Being able to play school ball since middle school until now has taught me so much. Every season is full of laughter and so much fun.”
Ms. Salmeron began her time in Huntington UFSD as a Jefferson Primary School kindergartener. “My overall experience at Huntington has been very eventful,” she said. “I’ve met so many great people and experiencing the school change every year has been so exciting.”
The teenager is in the midst of deciding which college is right for her. Ms. Salmeron is weighing SUNY College at Cortland, CUNY Hunter College, CUNY Baruch College and Georgia State University. She’d like to study psychology in preparation for a possible career as a sports psychologist.
“Soccer this year has by far been my favorite season, possibly because it’s my senior year, but our team is full of a great group of girls,” said Ms. Salmeron, who plays forward. “The beginning was pretty tough going into overtime the first couple of games with the top teams, but tying them has showed us and everyone else that we’re here to prove something. We’re in the second half of the season and we started to click. We’ve won our past two games and we have many more to win.”
Ms. Salmeron’s closest friends include Isabel Canales, Alexandra Gerbavsits and Marissa Stafford. Her all-time favorite faculty member is social studies teacher Fred Bisogno. “He has pushed me to be the best student I can possible be,” she said.
The senior loves donning the blue and white uniform for Huntington. “Being a Blue Devil soccer player has been a great honor,” Ms. Salmeron said. “I’ve learned so much from all the girls on the team and it’s just been the best.”
Ms. Hernandez-Veliz has seen plenty of playing time at midfield and forward. “I started to play soccer when I was three years old,” she said. “I played in many outside leagues like Cold Spring Harbor, HBC and South Huntington. Playing soccer at J. Taylor Finley Middle School and Huntington High School has taught me so much and has made me a better player in the field.”
The junior has been in Huntington UFSD since kindergarten at Flower Hill Primary School. “I love Huntington,” Ms. Hernandez-Veliz said. “Everyone is so nice especially all the teachers. They are always there when I need them.”
As far as her college prospects, the teenager is interested in New York University, Fordham University and Hofstra University. “I want to study for pre-med and then go to medical school to become an OB/GYN,” Ms. Hernandez-Veliz said.
The teenager’s closest friends include Juliana Friebolin, Johanna Campos, Brianna Isaza, Andys Sarvavia, Julia Gorecki, Alexa Amorsion and Ryan Aguirre. Ms. Hernandez’s all-time favorite teachers have been Lori Kenny, Matthew Ligouri and Dianna Cazzalino, “because they all have taught me to become a better person and to never give up and all have helped me in different ways,” she said.
Like all of her Blue Devil teammates, Ms. Hernandez-Veliz likes the direction of her team. “Soccer is going really great this year,” she said. “We all work so hard every day, whether it’s in games or practices. The past two games have been so great. We won both of them against Bay Shore and Central Islip. We hope to win our last few games and finish the season strong.”
Ms. Hernandez-Veliz is all-in for Huntington. “I love being a Blue Devil soccer player because all the coaches are really nice,” she said. “Whenever I step onto the field, all the girls have such a nice personality that they never fail to make me laugh. Being part of the team makes me a better player because we all work so hard to make each other better.”