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Alanis Gonzalez becomes first D215 All-State player

TF United soccer player changes focus, leads state in assists

CALUMET CITY, Ill. (July 22, 2023) – Alanis Gonzalez wasn’t expecting to make history.

But that’s what the TF United soccer player did during a memorable spring. After leading United to another successful season highlighted by a 10-match conference winning streak, Gonzalez became the first District 215 player to be named All-State by the Illinois High School Soccer Coaches Association.

The senior midfielder got the good news along with everyone else during TF North’s spring sports awards ceremony in late May.

Members of TF United’s girls soccer team, including All-Stater Alanis Gonzalez, were honored during TF North’s spring awards program. (Photo: Mike Clark)

“I didn’t know anything about it,” Gonzalez said. “I was shocked.”

She considered it a perfect topper for a season where she focused more on collective goals than individual ones. That showed in her stats — in mid-May, Gonzalez was leading the entire state in assists with 28.

“I was more leaning toward (helping) the team,” she said. “I wasn’t really focusing (on my own goals).”

That led to a 12-5 finish for United and other awards, including Aaron Zambrano being named Coach of the Year for the South Suburban Conference.

Gonzalez wasn’t surprised.

“I’m not going to lie … I was very confident in the team,” she said.

The secret to United’s success?

“Our chemistry,” Gonzalez said.

Now she’ll be heading off to play for the highly successful South Suburban College program. She’ll join her older sister Amaris, who was herself named SSC Blue Player of the Year in 2021.

Gonzalez is familiar with many of the current and incoming SSC players, including three of her TF United teammates and fellow all-conference selections: Berenice Zepeda, Katie Juarez, and Zayda Gil. “We understand each other … I think that will help us.” she said.

TF North

TF North


Also heading to South Suburban is TF North baseball standout David Holmes, who wrapped a successful two-sport career — he also was a state qualifier in bowling — with a massive spring.

David Holmes (Photo: Mike Clark)

The inexperienced Meteors finished 5-23-1, but Holmes was a productive presence all season long. He put up some eye-popping numbers: .558 batting average, .676 on-base percentage, 1.211 slugging percentage, 1.888 on-base plus slugging, seven home runs, 16 RBI, and 15 walks.

And that was just the start of his contributions, according to coach Tyler Fortier.

“David Holmes, for the TF North Meteors, meant much more than statistics,” Fortier said. “His work ethic, his commitment, his loyalty to the team.

“He’s a young man who shows everything through action. He has very few words but his actions speak loud.”

His coach believes the example Holmes set can only help the Meteors going forward.

“I know that it had an effect on these boys, to absorb his passion, his love and his drive,” Fortier said. “Not just for baseball but as a human being, to give back to society, the school, everything.”

Holmes also served as the president of the TF North powerlifting club overseen by Fortier.

“For the past two years he hasn’t missed a workout,” Fortier said. “We go at 6:30 a.m. Monday through Friday.”

Holmes slots as an outfielder and first baseman for SSC and his hitting should make him an asset, Fortier believes.

How did Holmes become such a good hitter?

“Studying. He did a lot of studying of major-league ballplayers,” Fortier said. “And quality reps. When he takes his reps you can see his focus.”


Mike Clark
Mike Clark
Mike Clark is a veteran journalist who has been covering sports in the Chicago area and beyond, from preps to pros, for more than four decades.