COM enos goes back

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  • KENTFIELD CA – OCTOBER 26: College of Marin women’s soccer player Lauren Enos, left, moves the ball across the field during her game against Yuba College at the College of Marin in Kentfield, Calif. On Tuesday, October 26, 2021. Enos, a 41-year-old freshman, returned to school to pursue nursing studies. (Sherry LaVars / Marin Independent Journal)

  • KENTFIELD CA – OCTOBER 26: Marin College girls football player Lauren Enos (12), fifth from left facing camera, meets with teammates to cheer before returning to the field after halftime during their match against Yuba College at Marin College in Kentfield, Calif. on Tuesday, October 26, 2021. Enos, a 41-year-old freshman, returned to school to pursue nursing studies. (Sherry LaVars / Marin Independent Journal)

  • KENTFIELD CA – OCTOBER 26: College of Marin soccer player Lauren Enos (12) poses for a photo before her game against Yuba College at the College of Marin in Kentfield, Calif. On Tuesday October 26, 2021. Enos, a 41- freshman, returned to school to join to pursue a nursing degree. (Sherry LaVars / Marin Independent Journal)

  • KENTFIELD CA – OCTOBER 26: College of Marin football player Lauren Enos (12) takes to the field with her teammates after halftime during their game against Yuba College at the College of Marin in Kentfield, Calif. On Tuesday October 26, 2021. Enos, a 41-year-old freshman, returned to school to pursue nursing studies. (Sherry LaVars / Marin Independent Journal)

  • KENTFIELD CA – OCTOBER 26: College of Marin women’s football player Lauren Enos (12) moves to gain control of the ball during her game against Yuba College at the College of Marin in Kentfield, Calif. On Tuesday, 26 October 2021. Enos, a 41-year-old freshman, returned to school to pursue nursing studies. (Sherry LaVars / Marin Independent Journal)

  • KENTFIELD CA – OCTOBER 26: College of Marin women’s football player Lauren Enos (12) moves to gain control of the ball during her game against Yuba College at the College of Marin in Kentfield, Calif. On Tuesday, 26 October 2021. Enos, a 41-year-old freshman, returned to school to pursue nursing studies. (Sherry LaVars / Marin Independent Journal)

When Lauren Enos met her future college girls’ football teammates, they assumed she was in her late twenties. This age gap was not unheard of in college, and the Mariners’ second-oldest player is 21.

However, the team were shocked to learn that their latest addition was in fact 41 years old.

“We were all blown away,” said fellow freshman Luisa Hernandez Campos. “She is in very good shape and she looks super young.”

This age barrier has been anything but Enos, a native of Marin and a resident of Fairfax. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the former star of the three sports at San Rafael High decided she wanted to move from a professional life in the restaurant business to a career in nursing.

She enrolled in the College of Marin and jokingly asked family friend Steve Berringer, the Mariners’ longtime baseball coach, if she could try for the team. Knowing his football prowess, Berringer directed Enos to College of the Sailor women’s and men’s football coach Geoff Aguiar – no try is necessary.

Aguiar praised Enos for his ability to play on any pitch – midfield, defense and even goalkeeper – and his stamina. She frequently plays the full 90 minutes. Enos recently scored his first college goal for the Mariners, who are 6-3-2 overall and 4-2-1 in conference with five games to play.

“I was a little nervous thinking, ‘What are these young girls going to think of this 41-year-old who is going to play?’” Said Enos. “And I didn’t want to take any room for the young women to come. But I just wanted to go out and play. The camaraderie and bond we all have is amazing. ”

Career change

Enos, who has been playing football since the age of 5, received his undergraduate degree in communications from the University of Colorado at Boulder. She immediately jumped into the family business. His father owned several restaurants, in California and Hawaii, giving Enos the chance to live and work in both states.

For the past 12 years, until recently, Enos worked at Marinitas in San Anselmo as a server, general manager and possibly a partner. But when COVID started and Marinitas temporarily closed its doors, Enos began to think about its future. She was ready for a change, and nursing had always been interesting.

She considered moving but ultimately decided to stay close to her family and parents, who still live in the San Rafael house where she and her two older brothers were raised. His boss’s wife started nursing school at age 50 and inspired Enos.

“I am not married, I have no children, so why not make this change? Enos wondered.

Management of time

In addition to taking prerequisite nursing courses and playing for the soccer team, Enos volunteers at the Marin General Hospital and works full-time at Trident in Sausalito, where his father took over as general manager after closed his 37-year-old restaurant in Napa due to a rent increase in 2019.

She hasn’t missed any practice or game despite her busy schedule.

“I didn’t want to sign up and not go to practice or the games and be a bad influence on the younger students,” Enos said. “When I commit to something, I’m 100% in it. ”

Enos, who played recreational football across the Bay Area throughout his adulthood, recently had a school check up with Aguiar and his team. His anatomy grade fell to B + and Enos was frustrated. She reassured Aguiar without concern that the rating would soon be back to an A, and that on their next recording two weeks later.

“She fits in with everyone at the same time and is a great role model for everyone,” said Aguiar, who is 35. “She’s just one of the players, but she also has a lot more life experience, so everyone respects her. It was really cool to see. She’s improved so much over the season too.

Fit in

While there have been times this season – like receiving a black eye in Game 3 and having to face the frequent heat without any shadows – when Enos asked what she was doing. But these moments are more than made up for by the positives.

Enos said his “body is feeling really good” and his stamina has increased dramatically over the season. Physically, she integrated well and the social transition was even more fluid.

After the team’s first practice, her teammates forced her to download Snapchat to communicate with each other, and now she sees herself as an expert. TikTok will be next, but she has yet to give in. She called herself the “team mom” in training one day – she broke down that she was older than some of her teammate’s moms – but the team quickly changed that title to “funny auntie. “.

“It’s been so much fun,” Enos said. “I like football in general, but it’s so nice not to think about work, homework, personal issues. I like to hang out with these 18 to 21 year olds and listen to what they have to say, try to be there for them and encourage them to stick to it.

“They have such a head on their shoulders and they have been a huge inspiration to me. Even though I have only known them for a few months, I have noticed that they are growing so much.

Luisa Hernandez Campos, with whom Enos has become particularly close, described the story of Enos as inspiring.

“I don’t know what I want to do with my life right now, but you don’t always have to know,” Campos said. “She showed us that you have time to understand and that you can always make a change to be happier.

“Talking to her, I forget that she is 41 years old; I think she’s our age. She is so positive and so much fun to be around.

‘Everything is possible’

Enos laughs when she looks at the list and sees herself listed as a freshman. She has been asked several times if she plans to replay for her second and final season, and she hasn’t ruled it out.

Enos knows that school and football are coming to an end soon, and while she is delighted to have more time to spend time with her six nieces and nephews, she will be sorely missed. Enos hopes to be accepted into the College of Marin nursing program, but knows she will likely have to move for school.

“I’m not looking forward to this ending for sure,” Enos said of playing for the Mariners. “It’s now part of my daily routine and the bond I have with these young women is so special that I don’t want it to end. I see so much potential in all of these girls, like Luisa – she’s got a great head on her shoulders and the biggest heart ever. They are all such brilliant young women.

“I hope that through all of this, I can inspire others to follow their dreams. Show them that anything is possible, no matter how old you are, as long as you have the right mindset. And although change is difficult and scary, sometimes making the necessary changes in our lives is exactly what we all need. I hope I can inspire these young women as much as they inspire me.


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