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West Orange Times & Observer Saturday, Oct. 2, 2021 9 months ago

ATHLETE OF THE WEEK: Ian Garcia

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The Foundation Academy senior is a "Swiss Army Knife" player who can play multiple positions.
by: Chris Martucci Sports Editor

Ian Garcia is a senior on the Foundation Academy football team. He is a so-called “Swiss Army Knife” player, because he plays multiple roles, including kicker, punter, slot receiver, linebacker and safety. Garcia was named the Orlando Touchdown Club’s player of the week for Sept. 8 after hitting three field goals, including one for 45 yards, during the Lions’ 38-6 win over Orangewood Christian Sept. 3. 

What mindset does it take to be a utility player? 

It has to do from the trust of the coaches. … (Against Lakeland Christian), I had a good game, because they threw me in at slot receiver and had some plays for me to run. They put me in at linebacker, had some blitzes for me to do. … It’s about the coaches putting me in the best positions to make plays. I work hard every week to do them, and they come out during the game. 

What part of the field do you enjoy playing the most? 

To play at the next level, I have been talking with a lot of coaches to play punter and kicker. I’m still very focused on that part of my game. … I went to a lot of kicking camps, so that’s my main position. The most fun position to play on the field, for me, is safety. I love being able to see the field and come down and get a hit on someone who is not looking … getting those picks. 

Are there any schools you are talking to in particular? 

There are a couple schools I went to over the summer that I’m still in contact with. Davidson College in North Carolina, Cornell, Brown and SMU. Georgia Tech and South Carolina are up there, too. Hopefully by the end of this year, I’ll have a couple of offers. 

Favorite TV/Netflix show? 

“Manifest” and “The Office.” 

Favorite ice cream flavor? 

Mint chocolate chip. 

If you weren’t playing football, what sport would you play? 

Soccer. I recently stopped playing club soccer to play football, but I still play for the school here. 

Favorite MLS team? 

Orlando City SC. 

Disney or Universal? Favorite ride? 

Universal — The Hulk. 

What’s an interesting thing about you no one would expect to know? 

I know four languages — English, Portuguese, Spanish, and I know a little bit of French. 

If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be? 

Paris. I would like to see the Eiffel Tower, the French history and many other things. In the U.S., I’d like to go to Hawaii. 

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Chris Martucci is the sports editor for the West Orange Times & Observer,  Southwest Orange Observer and OrangeObserver.com. He holds a master's degree in journalism from the University of Missouri — Columbia School of Journalism, as well as a bachelor's degree in...

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