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Edwin de Jesus Lita will compete for Portland Community College, Alex Farrens will compete for Chemeketa

On June 9 at North Marion High School, a pair of the school's best boys soccer players signed on to compete at the next level.

Graduating seniors Alex Farrens and Edwin de Jesus Lita have committed to play for Chemeketa Community College and Portland Community College, respectively. The duo were a part of a team in 2022 that went undefeated in the Tri-Valley Conference with a 9-0-1 record and battled to the 4A state semifinals.

Signing to compete for college programs is a big moment for both.

"It's an unbelievable moment," de Jesus Lita said after committing to PCC. "Getting to sign. From being a little kid to high school now, playing with all of these teammates. It's a great feeling, I've come a long way from playing with the club, now playing college. It's an amazing feeling and I won't forget this moment or school."

PMG PHOTO: TANNER RUSS - Graduating seniors Alex Farrens and Edwin de Jesus Lita signed with Chemeketa Community College and Portland Community College soccer programs, respectively.

"I'm excited," Farrens said. "I'm excited. I've met some of the teammates but I'm excited to meet more of them and I'm excited to play with them."

de Jesus Lita will join a Portland Community College men's soccer program that went 2-6-3 last season, grabbing a pair of wins over Southwestern Oregon. Farrens meanwhile will join a Chemeketa Storm team that is one of the top teams in the Northwest Athletic Conference's South Region.

According to North Marion soccer coach Carlos Perez, both Farrens and de Jesus Lita grew into the roles and talents they possess with dedication to the craft.

"Alex, he's a special one," Perez said. "He's a great leader, he wasn't one of our captains but besides that he always took command of our back four. He was always talking to his teammates, always positive. He always looks in the negative for something positive to bring up his game. He's really special. His technique on the ball, he's always challenging for everything.

"Edwin, he might be small, but he has this ability where he can out-dribble his opponents," Perez continued. "His IQ to find the right pass, he's really good at finishing. He's really talented. I think both PCC and Chemeketa are going to get talented kids on their programs, I'm really happy for them."

Part of what will help de Jesus Lita translate his game to the next level is that he already took a step up from North Marion and other 4A schools. As a junior he played for Canby High School's program and competed against some of the top 6A programs in the state. Playing against bigger athletes and bigger programs helped him prepare.

"The 6A schools, they're different," de Jesus Lita said. "They have turf fields which I'm not very used to playing. We have grass fields, which is not great, the best, but I adjusted to the playing style, and I learned a lot of stuff and applied it here when I came back. It just improved my game."

Farrens had a few words of advice for players who were coming up in the ranks with dreams of playing college ball.

"Don't quit," Farrens said. "Sometimes it may get tough, and you may feel like you're not the best, but just keep grinding it out and you'll get there eventually."

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