For as long as senior Benjamin Grossi can remember, he has had a ball at his feet, and according to him, soccer has coursed through his blood from the start. At age 9, Grossi started playing for the Miramar Strikers. At age 11, he moved to West Pines United. Two years later, at age 13, he moved to Davie Sharks United where he became a Florida State Champion and a two-time Region III champion. When he turned 17, he moved to South Florida FC with his Davie teammates. Currently, he plays for both Weston FC Academy and South Florida FC.
Grossi has played on the Heritage varsity team since his freshman year, so he rose in the ranks by following the examples led before him. As time went by, Grossi learned that he had to lead by example.
“I’ve always been a player that wants to push others and I think that’s a trait a leader must always have,” Grossi said.
With this mentality he became team captain and took his team through the season with an overall 17-5-1 record, landing them in the state championship game for the second year in a row. With a goal in the final three minutes of the game, the team gained the title.
Grossi describes the feeling of winning back-to-back state championships as “unexplainable.” With a preseason 3-1 loss to the Cypress Bay Lightning, the team began its season with many people doubting them.
“To show to the doubters that we can do it not only once but twice is very satisfying,” he said.
Along with a second-time state championship title, the Sun Sentinel named Grossi Player of the Year for the second year in a row.
“It means a lot to me because if you win it once, people can call it ‘lucky’ or a ‘one time thing,’ but winning two really proves something,” he said. Winning the award also confirmed to him that his hard work on the field has been recognized.
“I’ve never been happy with one thing, I’ve always wanted more,” Grossi said. He believes that this mentality, along with his perseverance, has molded him into the player he is today.
“Benji is a leader on and off the field. If he sees you badly positioned in the game, he makes sure to let you know. He’s a great person, a good friend and is always there to help you,” senior Diego Gargiulo, Grossi’s teammate and friend, said.
As for his advice to the younger players, Grossi reminds them to forget about previous seasons and play to win another title.