Crete forward Alexis Carbajal warms up for the 2020 Soccer Senior Showcase at Omaha Skutt on July 24. 

Alexis Carbajal, son of Jose Carbajal and MaElena Romero, is trading his Cardinal wings for Tiger stripes.

The Crete graduate signed to stay at home continue his soccer career at Doane University.

Carbajal has been playing soccer since he could walk and kick a ball, he said.

Growing up, Carbajal would sit and watch games and with his father, who was his inspiration for the sport.

“He was the one to show me how to first kick a ball,” Carbajal said. “[Soccer] was kind of our way of bonding.”

Carbajal started playing competitive club soccer in sixth grade and has kept playing in and out of season ever since.

In addition to Crete, he played with Capital Soccer Association in middle school and with Aztec FC/Dreamers FC during high school.

The COVID-19 pandemic stopped Carbajal’s senior season before games started.

Because of Directed Health Measures in Nebraska, neither games or practices could commence until July 1 so Carbajal lost his senior season.

At least until he was chosen for the Nebraska High School Soccer Senior Showcase on July 24-25. The games were held at Omaha Skutt High School.

That was his first and last time playing for his senior year.

“It was fun to finally get some touches on the ball and play one last game,” Carbajal said. “It felt good to play finally.”

Carbajal said he enjoyed playing and meeting new players, including some he would have played against had the season kept going.

Carbajal’s career in soccer is not over, though.

He signed to continue playing soccer at Doane University in May.

Carbajal chose Doane because it was close to home. He has grown up around Doane and has been able to watch how they play. While he had out-of-state offers, he grew up in Crete, lived here his whole life and was not ready to leave yet.

His dad, who has come to most of his games, won’t have to travel far to watch  games at Al Papik Field.

“He’s one of my biggest critics,” Carbajal said. “He’s a lot of my motivation to get better.”

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