Mustang Athletics » Athletic Director's Message

Athletic Director's Message

Hello Mustangs, Alumni, Families, and Salesian Supporters,

Welcome to another thrilling year of Mustang Athletics! As our teams embark on their 2023-24 journey, our student-athletes and coaches are ready to display their skills and sportsmanship.

In past years, I have set goals for our athletes and coaches in my welcome message. However, this year, I'd like to take a different approach and invite you to reflect on the meaning of education-based athletics.

While composing this message, I reflected on my high school athletic experience at Salesian and the invaluable life lessons I received that extend far beyond the realm of sports.

Back in 2000, as a freshman, I eagerly joined the football program, just like many of our students do. With a passion for the game from a young age, I often dreamed of playing for UCLA, with the 2006 match against Notre Dame circled on my calendar since I would be a sophomore in college (I knew that would be a nationally televised game on NBC). So, I committed myself to the football program, perhaps with a nudge or two from my dad. I attended the summer practices, participated in the traditional "Hell Week," and completed a full season. However, after that season, I came to the realization that high school football wasn't the right fit for me. While my love for the sport was still there, continuing to play simply wasn't in the cards for me.

As I entered my sophomore year, I discovered a newfound interest in golf. So, I dusted off my dad's old golf clubs from the garage, joined the golf team to learn the game, and remained dedicated throughout my high school years. I had no dream of making it to the PGA, but I loved the challenge of hitting a stationary small white ball as far as possible. Talk about frustrating! 

While I may not have been the star athlete (that was my younger brother) or a starter on the team, through hard work, dedication, and the support of my parents, who recognized that their son was gaining much more than playing time, Salesian Athletics provided me with the tools I needed for success outside of sports, as well as friendships that I continue to cherish to this day. These experiences within an education-based athletic program taught me discipline, teamwork, time management, decision-making, patience, and much more.

I encourage you all to ask yourselves, why is your son participating in Salesian Athletics?

Don’t get me wrong, winning is an incredible experience. Winning championships is a remarkable achievement, and I have been fortunate to be part of a few during my time as the AD and a student. However, there is so much more to athletics. As parents and guardians, it's important to understand that not everyone will play, not everyone will secure a college scholarship, and the team may not win every game or win a championship. It's a reality we must accept. Nevertheless, everyone will gain the invaluable life lessons that sports offer and the gift of lifelong friendships.



Mr. Tommy Loera '04, CAA