Record-breaking soccer star leads team to state titleDec 16, 2021 09:31AM ● By Catherine Garrett
Waterford’s Seven Castain set a Utah record with 71 goals scored this season while leading the Ravens to the 2A state title. (Photos by Kelly Evans Photography)
By Catherine Garrett | [email protected]
The most important goal of Seven Castain’s season for Waterford was the game-winner she netted with five minutes to play in the 2A state championship game against Rowland Hall recently. It was the Draper resident’s 71st of the year and put a stamp on a new Utah state record, breaking the previous mark of 68 goals set 32 years ago.
“That was a highlight moment in my soccer career,” Castain said. “All the pieces of our game came together—my teammate gave me an amazing pass, the field was perfect and my confidence was exactly where it should’ve been. Scoring in that moment felt like the biggest achievement because it just proved that if you give your all despite the score of the game, good things will happen.”
Head coach Kimi Miyashima noted some coincidences with the Ravens’ state title and her star player and the number that matches her name. “Seven had all of our goals in the championship game and there were seven goals total scored in the game. She also scored seven goals against Rowland Hall this season,” Miyashima said. “And the fact that this was our seventh championship is also fate.”
Waterford’s only two losses in 17 games this season were to the Winged Lions—a 2-1 defeat in the sixth game of the year and a 5-2 setback Sept. 30. The 4-3 win in the state title game also avenged a 7-0 loss to Rowland Hall in the 2018 state title game.
“Winning state was one of the most amazing feelings simply because all the hard work my team had done finally paid off,” Castain said. “We’d worked so hard all season and had lost to them several times, but we took extra time and made a commitment to show up early and come up with a strategy to beat them. We chose to put our hearts in the game and keep fighting for that final win. Personally, I think our commitment to doing this is the reason we won. It was even better to be able to do it with so many people I love and cherish in my life.”
The daughter of Heidi and Daren Castain of Draper averaged more than four goals a game this season, including another state-record nine goals against North Summit Sept. 23 to tally more than 100 goals during her high school career. The two time All-State player, who will be on the field for Texas Christian University next year, also recorded 18 assists on the year.
“Seven is an exceptional player and person,” Miyashima said. “Technically and tactically, it is obvious that she is an exemplary soccer player and brilliant on the field. What distinguishes her as a teammate, player, and person, however, is her approach to the game off the field.”
Castain said that her parents struggled to select a name for her when she was born. “They decided to name me ‘Seven’ because it means ‘lucky, completion and perfection,’” she said. “I’ve always wanted to live up to the name of perfection as closely as possible.”
She began playing soccer when she was three years old and was involved in a variety of athletics but ultimately chose soccer simply because she didn’t want to stop playing. “I couldn’t imagine my life without soccer,” she said. “I love playing with a team and seeing the ball ping around my teammates on a perfect play. Soccer is a game of mistakes that are waiting to be capitalized on, and I’ve always liked that about soccer.”
In addition to playing for the Waterford program, she has also been playing for the Utah Avalanche. Her current coach, Jimmie Powell, said Castain has been an important part of the club for years. “She is a great kid and an incredibly hard worker,” Powell said. “She is a leader by example and is always striving to be her best. We will miss her as she moves on to the college level.”
Castain said she has internalized many life lessons over the years from playing soccer. “I’ve learned a lot about failure and hard work as I’ve been cut and passed over, but I always let those moments be the fuel to my fire,” she said. “I’ve learned to prove others wrong and always believe in myself because failure is the best way to learn. I’ve also learned that hard work and commitment are what make people great. You have to have the desire and commitment to hone talent and add to it.”
Miyashima said, “I've known Seven as a player since she was young and she has always had a hunger to get out and play, to continue to learn, to find ways to improve, and to push herself in every aspect of the sport because she simply loves soccer. Her indisputable passion for playing inspires me, her teammates, her community, and everyone she encounters.”
The senior, who will represent the West in the All-American game Dec. 11 in Knoxville, Tennessee, will realize her childhood dream of playing collegiate soccer this fall in Fort Worth, Texas.
“TCU is the perfect fit for me,” she said. “The soccer program is growing and working its way to a national championship and I want to be a part of the group that helps them get there. I’m extremely excited to play at the next level despite knowing it will be hard. I want to be the best player I can be and being in an environment with players who are just as good as me or better is going to push me to become better so I can’t wait to see what I can do in a program with such amazing people and players.”