The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

View this profile on Instagram

The Torch (@sju_torch) • Instagram photos and videos

Photo Courtesy / YouTube Swae Lee
Swae Lee to Headline 2024 Stormin’ Loud
Olivia Seaman, Editor-in-Chief • April 18, 2024
Photo Courtesy / YouTube NPR Music
Chappell Roan: The People’s Pop Princess
Molly Downs, Culture Editor • April 18, 2024

New Zealander making his mark as a Johnny

Luis Esteves  was born on the other side of the world in Auckland, New Zealand. The senior midfielder scored the game-winner on Oct. 3 versus Seton Hall, the first game-winning goal of his career.
Luis Esteves was born on the other side of the world in Auckland, New Zealand. The senior midfielder scored the game-winner on Oct. 3 versus Seton Hall, the first game-winning goal of his career.

Senior midfielder Luis Esteves is looking to close out a strong season with the St. John’s University men’s soccer team. But, while he looks towards the future, it’s impossible to overlook his incredible journey to St. John’s.

Growing up in New Zealand, Esteves played rugby, which is considered the most dominant sport in the country, from age nine to 13, but he stopped to concentrate on soccer.  “My dad is from Portugal so I played soccer because of him,” Esteves said.

Esteves attended King’s College in Auckland, NZ, a boarding and day high school. He claims that going to boarding school made transitioning to new schools and traveling that much easier. “The transition to a new school and place was pretty easy because I was already used to being away from home and my family,” Esteves said.

In New Zealand, he received guidance to help him attend school and play soccer for the University of Mobile in Alabama. As a Mobile Ram, Esteves appeared in 30 games, including 27 starts, in two seasons. Esteves helped the Rams post a 17-5-2 record and reach the NAIA National Championship Finals as a freshman.

Through contact with Red Storm teammate and fellow New Zealand native, Andrew Withers, Esteves became interested in St. John’s. “Andrew told me about the team at St. John’s and what it was like living in New York,” Esteves said.

Esteves was intrigued by the opportunity to join the team in New York. “I saw that the head coach [Dave Masur] produced a lot of professional players and I loved hearing about the diverse environment at St. John’s,” Esteves said.

Esteves credits his teammates for helping him adjust to a new school, city and team. “My philosophy coming into this was to earn everything. I learned what my teammates did in order to be successful and tried to emulate that,” Esteves said. Despite being new to the team, Esteves was older and more experienced than a majority of the Red Storm players. He embraced his new leadership role as part of the team. Esteves closely observed the seniors during his first year on the team and he tried to follow in their footsteps.

In his first season at St. John’s, Esteves appeared in eight games, including seven starts. He finished with two goals, scoring them just 2:28 apart in his first-career start and Division I debut, a 3-2 double overtime win against Butler.

This season, Esteves has already tacked on two goals. Esteves scored his first goal of the season on Sept. 29 to cap a 3-0 victory against Central Connecticut State. His second goal of the season was his first-career game-winning goal, helping the Red Storm defeat Seton Hall 1-0 on Oct. 3.

Esteves also has spent the past four summers playing for the Seattle Sounders U23 team. In his first season with the team, he helped lead the Sounders to the Northwest Division title, the Western Conference Championship and the national semifinals against FC London. FC London won the game 3-2 before dispatching Carolina to win the 2012 PDL Championship. Esteves’ goal is to eventually follow in his U23’s teammate’s footsteps and head into the professional level.

Esteves puts the goal for St. John’s this season simply, “We’re improving game by game and that needs to keep happening. The Big East Tournament is our priority. We want to win that to get the automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.”

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Torch
$0
$500
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of St. John's University. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Torch
$0
$500
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

We love comments and feedback, but we ask that you please be respectful in your responses.
All The Torch Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *