Inspire: Open goals, open eyes to opportunities for talented teen soccer player in DC

Inspire: Open Goals, open eyes to opportunities. (ABC7)

Financial hurdles can stop some talented kids from competing in their favorite sports. Now we introduce you to a teenager with raw talent and the passion to reach his goals.

When did Edgar Ayala start playing soccer? He says ever since "God gave me feet."

Ayala's varsity coach at Bell Multicultural High School believes Edgar has the talent to play for a Division 1 university.

"I had an MVP for all-state...for all of DC," Ayala says.

He says he still remembers the game that changed him in the fifth grade.

"We were down 2-0, and I had scored one goal to make it 2-1," Ayala recalls.

From that day forward, Edgar learned being down didn't mean he was out.

"No matter what country, what state, wherever you come from, never give up," Ayala says.

He comes from a big family, but says most of the time they can't come to his games or practice---his mom and sister usually working to support the family.

That's where a non-profit called the Open Goal Project steps in.

"Open Goal has been such an amazing program for me," Ayala says. "They gave me the opportunity to have transportation and also pay fees for traveling."

For the first time he's traveling outside of the country for a soccer trip to Costa Rica.

Former coach and Open Goal Executive Director Amir Lowery recruited Edgar.

"I made him the captain of our team just because he had innate leadership abilities," Lowery said.

"I want to make everyone proud," Ayala says. "From family to friends to coaches. You know, I want to put that big smile on everyone's faces."

Edgar is not alone, Open Goal supports many young soccer players in our area who come from families who can't afford transportation and other expenses.

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