[playing sweeper]. He's a gift because he inspires other guys to be
that way -- someone who just does what he does and lets his play
speak for itself."
Since his days of playing AYSO All-Stars -- when his older sister
Laura, now 23, was earning All-Area second-team honors for the
Crescenta Valley girls' team in 1996 and 1997 -- Fawcett has been a
steady, calming presence on every squad he's been on, including his
West Valley Samba club team.
But his influence was most profound at St. Francis, where, after
being a starter on the program's Division IV championship team in
2001, Fawcett stepped up to captain a defensive unit that allowed 27
goals in 32 matches and recorded an area-best 15 shutouts.
"The reason we won the division [in 2001] was because we had Jeff
at sweeper," said Appels, whose squad finished ranked No. 14 in the
nation according to Student Sports Magazine.
"That, in itself, was enormous and that's why we knew he was going
to be so good. But it was because he had been through all of those
things before that none of [what transpired in the playoffs or the
title match this year] was intimidating to him.
"He was one of those guys who led by example, not one who tried to
rally the troops, but that's why he was the right kind of leader for
And Fawcett's leadership carried the Golden Knights through a
demanding schedule, which included a trip to the Elite Bracket final
at the Student Sports Invitational, a Buena Tournament title and, of
course, another division championship, which was highlighted by a 2-1
sudden-death overtime triumph against Temecula Chaparral in the
"We had a good balance," said Fawcett, who was joined on the
All-Area roster by seven of his teammates, highlighted by six
first-team selections, including fellow defenders Caldwell and
Branden Izumi, and goalkeeper Tashi Nakanishi.
"But a lot of it has to do with the coaches as well. They taught
us to respect the game and the other players, and represent the
school with a great deal of pride.
"[Coach] Appels has brought me a long so far and I have so much