High school and youth sport are supposed to bring families together, with parents coaching their sons in both official and backyard capacities. Yet for one Florida family, a father’s success on the high school coaching sidelines may only be derailed by another member of his family; his own son.
As reported by the Florida Times-Union, Ponte Vedra Beach (Fla.) Nease High assistant boys soccer coach Carlos Almeida has played an integral role in solidifying Nease’s position as one of the most promising programs in Northern Florida, helping push the school into the third playoff spot in Florida’s District 4-3A playoff bracket. Yet, as impressive as Nease has been, the school has been particularly concerned with one area rival.
That’s because St. John’s (Fla.) Bartram Trail High features one player ideally suited to figure out how to break apart all of Almeida’s schemes: His son, Bartram Trail senior Daniel Almeida.
Almeida turned down the chance to attend and compete for Nease in favor of a high school education at Bartram, where the younger Almeida is studying to become a architect. In the process, Daniel Bartram also was immediately placed on the varsity soccer squad.
It didn’t take long for the younger Bartram to make an impression in front of his father. As a sophomore he scored two goals to lead Bartram to a 3-1 win.
While Daniel says that he enjoys facing off against his father -- “It’s fun, actually” he told the Times-Union -- his father offered up a much more conflicted view of the face offs between the two.
“I don’t say too much during Bartram games,” Carlos said. “[If Daniel scores], I just keep quiet. Inside I say, ‘Oh, that was a nice goal.’ ”
As this is Daniel Almeida’s senior season, it remains pretty unlikely that the duo would face off again. Still, if they do, Daniel insists that his mother is on his side.
In the end, that might be the karmic twist that gives Bartram a little edge in one incredibly evenly matched duel for familial and school pride.