By Ronald Hanaki
With five wins already, ESU’s men’s soccer team is off to a fast start this season. One of the big reasons for the Warriors’ early success is the leadership and play of senior captain and forward Casey Choffy.
If Choffy had a commercial, it might go something like this: He lives vicariously through himself. He once had an awkward moment, just to see how it feels. When it is raining, it is because he is thinking of something sad. His business card simply says, “I’ll call you.”
Casey Choffy is the most interesting man in ESU sports at the moment.
Of the team’s early success, Choffy said, “We are not surprised. In previous years, we always believed that we had the guys to play well. We always believed in ourselves. This year, it’s just coming together. Now, we are being rewarded for the belief and confidence in ourselves. We are finally putting together the results that we need. It’s nice for a change.”
This season, Choffy is playing forward, which is a new position for him. Regardless, the unflappable Choffy has made the transition look easy. He is already among the league leaders in the PSAC with seven goals and one assist.
Yet Choffy has remained modest about his success. He said, “I’m doing what I can to help the team and push the team in the right direction.”
“Without the team playing well, I wouldn’t be where I am. The awards are nice, but those are awarded to teams playing well at the moment. The most important thing is that the team is heading in the right direction,” said Choffy.
Choffy’s placid demeanor belies a steely determination and fierce competitive instinct. “In the past, we haven’t had good starts to the season, but we are headed in the right direction. We have playoff aspirations this year, and we are confident that we can push forward.”
Head coach Rob Berkowitz added, “The team finally has some veteran leadership that we’ve been lacking in the last few years. We are more balanced from all positions starting in goal with our returning junior J.B. Pahls and freshman Will Boerema.”
“The back four is much more consistent than we’ve been in the past, and we are much more dynamic in the midfield. Casey Choffy and Christian Bukowski at the top are creating more chances than previous years, and Casey is finishing those chances. Christian is a good playmaker for us. He gets a bunch of assists to others. Finally, our team leadership and maturity are big contributors to our good start,” Said Coach Berkowitz.
“Everybody is working hard at their positions,” added Choffy.
Choffy said, “Rankings don’t mean anything now. We have the motivation to do well, so we just focus on the next game. We try to get the next win and move on.”
Choffy has been playing soccer since he was five years old. He said, “It’s something I love to do, and I’ve stuck with it.”
“I came to ESU and loved it here. In the past, ESU has had a great soccer program, so everything fit into place,” said Choffy.
Goalkeeping is one of the team’s strengths. Choffy said, “We have two good goalkeepers, so we have competition in those spots. The goalkeeping spot is good.”
Choffy cites the team’s chemistry as another strength. “We are a tightly-knit group of players. Off the field, we hang out and believe in each other for sure,” said Choffy.
When Choffy is not playing Superman on the field, he is a business management major with a concentration in accounting. He also has a minor in economics.
After his graduation from ESU, Choffy plans to get his certification to become a CPA (Certified Public Accountant) or CMA (Certified Management Accountant).
He is interested in public accounting, but he is not sure which field to go into yet. Of course, he wouldn’t mind if the MLS (Major League Soccer) came calling.
Choffy has also coached U10 (Under 10) soccer for a few years now. He said, “Coaching is something that I want to pursue, as well.”
In addition to playing soccer, Choffy is a soccer fan, as well. He wakes up early every weekend to watch the EPL (English Premier League) on ESPN. His favorite team is Arsenal, and his favorite player is Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere.
“In the past, the PSAC was maybe dominated by one or two teams. This year, it’s more wide open,” Said Choffy.
Coach Berkowitz added, “Our goal is to qualify for the postseason by getting ourselves in the top six. We’ll take our chances from there.”
Choffy said, “Just keep backing us. We definitely have a shot to go deep in the playoffs, so we will do our best to try.”
Email Ronald at: