Playing soccer at Florida Tech is a Campanini family tradition

Holy Trinity senior Carlo Campanini signs to play with Panthers


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Carlo Campanini (second from right) poses with family members (from l-r) Luca, Bino and Trish after signing his National Letter of Intent to play soccer at Florida Tech. Luca is a sophomore at Florida Tech, while Bino is in the Florida Tech Hall of Fame after winning national titles as a player and a coach. isabella Campanini (not pictured) also played soccer at Florida Tech.

VIERA VOICE Carl Kotala

Campanini family. Florida Tech.

Florida Tech. Campanini family.

The two have become virtually synonymous with each other over the years, and that was the case again on Friday when Holy Trinity senior Carlo Campanini signed his National Letter of Intent to play soccer for the Panthers next season.

Carlo joins his older brother, Luca, a sophomore midfielder at Florida Tech. Their older sister, Isabella, also played for the Panthers and is currently working on her doctorate at the school.

Then there is their father, Bino, a Florida Tech Hall of Famer who won a soccer national championship as both a player and assistant coach for the Panthers. He is now a Vice President, Office of Alumni Affairs and the Executive Director, Alumni Association at the school.

Come the fall, there will be four Campanini family members running around the Florida Tech campus all at once.

That’s a lot of Campaninis.

“It was really special,” Carlo Campanini said after his signing ceremony. “It’s a great honor to be able to follow my family to Florida Tech. It’s something I’m really proud of.

“I think it will be a really fun four years for me. I think I’ll really enjoy it.”

Carlo, who like his brother is one of the top goal scorers in the history of the Holy Trinity boys soccer program – he had an incredible five goals in recent win over John Carroll – never really set his sights on attending any other school.

“Growing up … I’ve never really thought about going anywhere else,” he said. “It’s always been there. I’ve always wanted to do it. It’s always been perfect. It’s everything I wanted.”

Of course, brothers being brothers, Luca used to kid Carlo about being able to become a Panther one day.

“We always used to joke around about how he needs to get in better shape or else he’s not going to make the team,” Luca said. “Just stuff to motivate him, to get him here.”

Luca said he is “really looking forward” to playing with his brother again. The last time the brothers were teammates, Holy Trinity went to the Class 1A state final four.

In a speech that got emotional at times, Carlo thanked his brother, his sister, his mother (Trish), his grandparents and his father for the various roles they played in helping him get this far.

“He does so much, and I’ve never thanked him enough,” Carlo said of his father. “He’s almost like an unsung hero. He does a lot and he doesn’t get a lot of recognition for what he does.

“I wanted to take that moment to really thank him.”

As happy as Carlo was to sign with Florida Tech, his parents and his grandparents were beaming, too.

“Obviously, it’s a very proud day for me to see my second son go to my alma mater, and where I played soccer,” Bino Campanini said. “I’m just really happy that I’m going to get an opportunity, once again, to see both my sons play together.

“That’s a great feeling for a dad, to watch your sons play. They had so much success here at Holy Trinity, I’m hoping they’ll continue that at Florida Tech.”

While the Campanini family’s ties with Florida Tech are certainly tight, it doesn’t end there. Florida Tech men’s soccer Robin Chan and Bino Campanini are former teammates. Holy Trinity coach James Phillips is a Florida Tech graduate as well.

“If it wasn’t for Florida Tech, I wouldn’t be here,” Bino Campanini said. “There’s a lot more to it than just them going to play college. It’s like a family affair.”

And as Carlo Campanini would later explain, family is very important to him.

Perhaps that’s why, during his speech to the assembled Holy Trinity student body, the senior said:

“Considering I’m not married, or have kids … this is the happiest day  of my life.”