Cuauhtemoc Ochoa was going to be a ninth-grader at Moanalua this fall, but a soccer opportunity changed his plans.
Ochoa, 14, was signed by Pachuca, a pro soccer club in Mexico, according to his club coach Hugo Gutierrez, who is also the head coach at Moanalua High.
So, instead of playing for Gutierrez as a freshman for Na Menehune, Ochoa will play in the third division of the Pachuca pro club team. At that level, he won’t be paid a salary, but he will receive food and board money and other support money. He needs to climb two more levels to make it to the first division, where the club’s top team plays.
Ochoa was a center midfielder on Gutierrez’s Escola Hawaii club team this summer in U-15, and they made it to the quarterfinals of the Chivas Cup, an international tournament, in Guadalajara, Mexico.
Ochoa is from Ewa Beach, but has already arrived in Mexico. His father, Jose Ochoa, is originally from Michocan Mexico. His mom, Raquel Ochoa, is from Hawaii and of Hawaiian descent.
“He’s by himself there,” Gutierrez said about Ochoa. “He speaks a little bit of Spanish. He’ll be living in the facilities of the club. They have everything. They have school. Everything is paid for — meals. They cannot pay him. They are allowed to give him the things he needs.
“He’s the most technical player our club has had,” Gutierrez continued. “He’s very discplined, on the quiet side. He’s introverted outside of the field. On the field, he becomes someone else. He’s an artistic person on the field. I like to describe him as a painter who uses all the different colors in his work of art in every game. He’s very verstatile the way he plays. He creates and dictates the pace.”