Andover Boys Soccer Co-Captain Henry Rogers ’19 strives to impart his love for soccer onto each of his teammates to establish a hospitable atmosphere in which every member of the team feels at home.
“I love all the [guys] on the team. I always try and make the practices and all the time we have together as a team as much as a positive and good time as possible. At the end of the day, we’re playing soccer, but it’s because we all love the game and we love the people we’re playing with. There’s no point in going out there and playing our games and doing practices if we’re all miserable, so just trying to make practice a place where people feel comfortable and people are having fun and playing the game that they love in a non-toxic environment. That’s something [Co-Captain Max Levi ’19] and I have tried to implement: having a place where we feel like a family,” said Rogers.
Rogers has been a member of Andover’s soccer program since his Junior year, playing in JV2 and JV during his Junior and Lower years respectively. Outside of Andover, he played club soccer in hopes of making the team his Upper year. Rogers not only made the varsity team his Upper year but was also a starting player by his fifth game.
“Getting elected by my teammates as captain after only being on the team for one year was a huge honor for me. I love the team. I wanted to be on the team as bad as anything for two years, and finally being on it and being able to lead it was a huge thing for me. To finally get there and be able to lead a bunch of guys that I love like brothers — that’s pretty awesome,” said Rogers.
Rogers’s genuine passion for the game has been evident throughout his time at Andover and regardless of what team he is on, according to Charlie Murphy ’19.
“I have known Henry since [Junior] Year when we first tried out for the team together, and since his first day, he has had a great attitude towards soccer. He is a very disciplined soccer player and is also a very good leader on and off the field,” wrote Murphy in an email to The Phillipian.
Alongside Levi, Rogers emphasizes the importance of each and every member of the team to the team’s success as a whole, according to Murphy.
“As Captain this season, he has worked with Max… to make sure the team stays motivated and focused. With many new players making the team this year, Henry has done a very good job of making sure everyone feels like they are important to our team’s success,” said Murphy. “During drills he constantly claps for people when they do something well, and he always sets the tone for each workout. Outside of drills he makes sure we always stay focused on our next game, preventing us from getting distracted during practice.”
Rogers best attribute is the friendly and welcoming attitude he extends towards every member of the team, according to Ethan Hong ’22.
Hong wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “For me, Henry is probably the nicest kid I’ve ever met. He came up to me on the first day of Team Prep, and introduced himself and welcomed me to Andover. He’s a great kid and a great leader. He’s always being the bigger person, helping everyone, and an all around great team player.”
Rogers is also known by his teammates for his willingness to put everything on the line for his team and constant hard work, according to Rolando Rabines ’19.
Rabines said, “He’s such a hard worker and such a genuinely honest, loyal guy, and he’s going to do whatever is best for the team, whether that be midfield or center back… He lays his body on the line and gives his all every single game, which I appreciate, the coaches appreciate, everyone on the team really appreciates it. He helps lead the way and helps form this team culture that everyone’s buying into, a hardworking, defensive mentality for our team.”
Rogers exhibited signs of leadership even before making the varsity team, making him a perfect fit for Co-Captain, according to Kion Young ’20.
Young said, “He made the team the same year as I did. After that, he started showing signs of leadership, telling [us] to focus when we needed to focus. He was being a leader, which I did see on JV1, but then he showed up on varsity and he got the captainship, rightfully so, and he’s changed so much. I feel like when I first met him he was just this funny guy, and now he’s a funny leader. He’s there for everyone.”
Rogers’s game knowledge is crucial to the team’s success, especially against more physically dominant teams in the league, according to Rabines and David O’Brien ’21.
“He’s a smart player. He helps organize the defense, and he puts himself in good spots to make plays. We’re essentially playing against very athletic people going to play college soccer, Division I and Division III, and the forwards are fast, and a lot of teams are more athletic than us, so we have to outsmart them,” said Rabines.
O’Brien said, “As a player, he’s very physical and pretty dominant in the back, so he can help us to control games when they might be frantic otherwise. It is helpful for the rest of the team to know that we don’t have to worry about getting beaten in the back or losing it. I played left back in our last Loomis [Chafee] game, and before then I had never played left back, so I was on his side. So it was just helpful whenever I was on defense whether to shift in or go out and press, and when I was on offense I knew what I was doing mostly because of him.”
According to Rogers, he strives to embody the qualities of last year’s captains and hopes to facilitate a supportive team dynamic at every game and practice.
Rogers said, “Will Raphael [’18] was our captain last year, and he was absolutely tenacious and would go to every ball as hard as he could. He just wanted it more than anyone else on the field. His effort and his tenacity is something that I try as hard as I can to mirror on a daily basis. I don’t think I’ll reach his level of those skills, but I try and make some sort of semblance with that. Also, Morgan Cutts [’18] was the other captain last year, and he had a very calm and collective way of conducting himself that I’ve also tried to mirror, just keeping that composure and not getting lost in the moment.”