[Mike Mantucca for Shaw Media]
This is a different era and a different team, but the Mustangs are again thinking big. Rose, a junior midfielder, is a big reason for the optimism. She embraces her family’s connection to the program.
“I think it’s really cool,” Rose said. “She has really high expectations for our team since her team was so good. It kind of pushes you to be like her.”
Geocaris, who taught social studies at Downers North and now works in administration for the Maine Township school district, has been a positive presence around the Mustangs even before her daughter put on the uniform.
“Mom definitely had a big influence,” Downers South coach Chris Hernandez said. “When we did an eighth-grade orientation, [Geocaris] came up and introduced herself and talked about how she played for Barry.
“That is really nice when you can start to see that coming down the family line. Players want to be involved with a positive experience.
“Jordan’s mom has been a super fan and has been at everything and supported the team and it’s been fantastic and it’s contagious. I’m very pleased that she’s obviously having fun and continuing that tradition.”
Rose has continued the tradition, though it didn’t happen right away. She played club soccer for Eclipse as a freshman before joining the Mustangs last season.
The Indiana State recruit was an immediate hit, scoring 11 goals and three assists to earn all-sectional honors as Downers South won a share of the West Suburban Conference Gold Division title and a regional championship. The delayed start to her prep career was by design.
“My mom really helped me and she pushes me to go to different clubs and at different levels so I get better,” Rose said. “I wanted to get committed [to college] before I played high school because a lot of recruitment happens through club.
“Sophomore year I committed, so my mom was like, ‘yeah, you should definitely play high school.’”
It was a smart decision, not only for her growth as a player but as a person.
“[High school] kind of prepares you also for college even more than club does because it’s more of a team environment,” Rose said. “I loved it, so I came back.”