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Silva, Rodriguez excel in all aspects of their lives
Jesus Silva CVHS
Jesus Silva, pictured with Athletic Director Greg Magni, was named Central Valley High School’s Central California Conference Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year. - photo by Contributed to the Courier

Seniors Jesus Silva and Daniela Rodriguez have been named Central Valley’s Central California Conference Male and Female Scholar-Athletes of the Year.

“I had no idea I was going to win,” Silva said. “My athletic director (Greg Magni) told me. I think it’s pretty cool. It’s an incentive to do your best in the class and on the field.”

“It doesn’t surprise me at all,” Hawks’ boys soccer head coach Horacio Garcia stated while talking about Silva’s recognition. “I check my players’ grades once a month. He was the student-athlete with the highest grade-point average from our soccer program.”

“It’s an honor to be able to be recognized for my achievements in both school and sports,” Rodriguez said. “It’s kind of a shock that there’s an award for that and I was the recipient.”

Rodriguez earned five varsity letters, including four in soccer and one in volleyball.

“I didn’t play sports for recognition,” she said. “It’s just something I really enjoyed doing. I loved being around people that had the same interests and drive as me.”

Rodriguez, a midfielder, helped lead Central Valley’s girls soccer team to an 11-11-2 overall record, third-place finish in the Central California Conference standings (7-3-2) and berth to the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-I playoffs appearance this past winter.

“She’s a very talented player,” Hawks’ head coach Miguel Larranaga said. “She always gives it 110 percent. She never gets tired. She’s one of the best leaders I’ve ever had. She always listened. She supported everybody. She was a team player.”

Rodriguez collected six goals and two assists while being limited to 10 games due to injuries senior year.

She was named to the CCC Second Team.

Rodriguez totaled nine goals and three assists while earning first-team all-conference honors in the 11th grade.

“I had my best season junior year,” Rodriguez said. “Senior year, I got injured. I was out for the majority of the season.”

Rodriguez played organized soccer for the first time at the age of five.

She dedicated six years of her life to travel soccer, including five seasons with the Ceres Earthquakes and one with the Modesto Ajax.

“My dad and older brother played soccer,” she said. “I always had exposure to it. It’s crazy knowing that chapter is over. It was my entire life for so long. It’s bittersweet. I’ve made so many friends and grown as a person.”

Rodriguez had a cumulative GPA of 4.66 at Central Valley.

She took a total of nine advanced-placement classes.

She was ASB president this school year.

She was named one of the high school’s salutatorians.

“If I’m not playing sports, I’m trying to stay on top of school,” Rodriguez said. “I’ve always been that way.”

Rodriguez will attend UC Berkeley.

“My dream school was UCLA,” she said. “Getting accepted was awesome. I ended up choosing UC Berkeley because of the distance. My family and I have always been super close. I didn’t want to leave. It’s not too far of a drive.”

Rodriguez will be a first-generation college student.

“I’ve always had big dreams and plans,” she said. “I’ve always valued education. I have immigrant parents. Their struggles have been my motivation. I wouldn’t be able to do anything without the support of my family.”

Rodriguez will major in biology. She wants to become a physician’s assistant.

“Being able to interact with kids and people is something I value,” she said. “I want to impact people.”

A standout boys soccer player, Silva earned one varsity letter during his prep athletic career.

He starred at goalkeeper while leading Central Valley to a 21-7-1 overall record, first-place finish in the Central California Conference standings (11-1-0) and to the quarterfinals of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-I playoffs as a senior.

“My team helped me a lot,” he said. “I had a strong defense.”

Silva was voted the CCC’s Goalkeeper of the Year.

He totaled 62 saves and 10 shutouts on the season.

Silva competed at the JV level as a junior.

“I had a pretty decent career,” he said. “I feel I could have done better.”

Silva started playing soccer at the age of six.

“I’m going to miss it,” said Silva, who will be a full-time student while he attends UC Merced.

Silva had a cumulative grade-point average of 4.05 at Central Valley.

He took a total of four AP classes, including two junior year and one as a sophomore and freshman.

“I’ve always been a good student,” Silva said. “I paid attention in class. I made sure I was ready for tests. Sometimes, it got hard to balance both (academics and athletics).”

Silva will major in chemistry in college. He wants to become a dentist.

“My brother went to Stanislaus State,” he said. “My parents didn’t go to high school. Seeing how hard they work pushed me to be better. They’re immigrants. They’ve had tough lives. They’ve had to work harder than a normal person. They taught me a lot about discipline They gave me their work ethic.”

Daniela Rodriguez senior
Senior Daniela Rodriguez, pictured with Activities Director Jon Merchant and Athletic Director Greg Magni, was named Central Valley High School’s Central California Conference Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year. - photo by Contributed to the Courier