After steadily improving throughout his Upper year in 2013, Andover Boys Soccer’s Nicolas Swenson ’15 has seen a jump in his playing time and offensive production in 2014. This season, in addition to playing sound soccer in an increased capacity, Swenson has scored two goals, has added four assists and has helped Andover to a 7-3-5 record. Swenson’s second goal of the year was the icing on the cake in Andover’s 5-0 rout over Deerfield last Saturday. His efforts against Deerfield and positive effect on team morale have earned him the title of _The Phillipian’s_ Athlete of the Week.
When did you start playing soccer?
I started playing rec-league soccer when I was four years old, and, when I was six, I got asked to play for a U-8 club team because I was too good for all the other six-year-olds, and I guess that’s when I knew soccer was the sport for me.
Who is your favorite soccer player and why?
My favorite player is Michael Bradley because he reminds me of myself, in that he’s kind of slow, not very athletic, looks kind of funny and really good at passing.
Last year you didn’t score any goals, but this year you have two. What has led to this increase in scoring?
A big factor has been playing time. Last year I didn’t get to play all that much, and, this year, I’m playing around 60 minutes per game. The more minutes I get, the more confident I become on the ball, and that’s led to more offensive production.
What’s your favorite part of being on the soccer team?
The bus rides to away games. Every time we win an away game, we have a tradition where we blast teenage pop music the whole way back to school, and everyone sings along. Everybody yells at me to stop singing because I’m really bad at it, but I just can’t help myself.
What’s your favorite pump-up song?
“Heartbeat” by Childish Gambino.
Why do like playing soccer?
I’ve never been the most athletically gifted player — speed and strength have always been issues for me. In middle school I was picked on a lot for my awkward running. But soccer is a sport in which technique and understanding of the game is just as important as pure athleticism.
What goes through your head when you score a goal?
The honest answer is that I don’t have to run to celebrate after scoring a goal. I can just sit down after scoring.
How have you and the other Seniors helped lead the team?
I think we’ve taken a more cohesive approach to leading the team. This year, we only have four returning Seniors, as opposed to last year, when we had seven. A bunch of the Uppers on the team have been huge too, and we’ve taken a more inclusive leadership approach.
Goal for the end of the season?
Make the playoffs. End of story.