Jesus Rojas said he’d hoped to get some playing time during Temple’s trio of scrimmages leading up to Thursday’s season opener because he wanted to make a case for his spot. Rojas got the chance and apparently showed enough in those auditions.
Rojas’ name and No. 20 were scribbled in pen on Temple’s lineup as a late addition by coach Matt Corley to the Wildcats’ roster. It stood out on paper then Rojas shined on the field, the big stage suiting the freshman well.
Rojas scored a pair of goals within a minute after play resumed in the second half and added a third for his hat trick in Temple’s 5-1 victory over Killeen Shoemaker on the first day of the Wildcat Kickoff Classic at Woodson Field.
“I was just trying to do my best and make goals,” Rojas said of his regular-season varsity debut. “I tried to show everyone that I’m not just any freshman and that I can go out there and do something.”
What he did was break a scoreless tie with a goal 30 seconds after halftime, added another 21 seconds following that one, then re-established Temple’s two-goal advantage later in the second with his third, and perhaps most impressive, in the 69th minute.