Photo by K-W United FC
Sergio Camargo is no stranger to K-W United FC and the PDL.
"Captain Camargo" is the name many around K-W United use for the midfielder who is transferring to Syracuse University for his senior collegiate season after a successful three-year stint at Coastal Carolina University. While he will be switching schools come this fall, Camargo has been coming back to compete for K-W United the past four years.
"My first year here, I was back and forth from TFC (Academy) and K-W, and I just fell in love with the family, the chemistry here, the players and staff," Camargo told USLPDL.com. "It was just an easy decision to come back here every year during the summer."
Born in Cucuta, Colombia, Camargo moved to Newmarket, Ontario, at the age of four. He excelled on the field as a youngster, and was named to Canada's Under-17 national team roster that competed at the 2011 FIFA Under-17 World Cup in Mexico.
Since then, he has shined for the Chanticleers, scoring 19 goals and providing 15 assists in 58 games played over the course of three seasons.
Even in the PDL, success has followed Camargo. The midfielder, who ranks second on the first edition of the 2016 PDL Top Prospects list, scored eight goals and distributed five assists in 11 appearances for K-W United in 2015. Camargo, who was also the captain for the 2015 side, led K-W United to its first-ever PDL title with a 4-3 win against the New York Red Bulls U23 in the championship game on Aug. 2.
"Seeing how far everyone has gone since then, we only have four returners, has been great," Camargo said. "That's a good thing because so many have moved on to bigger and better things ... it was a huge boost to all of those players playing on that team. It was a great experience."
Some of those players took their game to the next level. Julian Buescher is now earning minutes with MLS club D.C. United, Ben Polk is playing for USL's Portland Timbers 2 and Nathan Ingham, a close friend of Camargo, is with FC Edmonton. He keeps track of how their doing, watching each and every one of their teams' games even if his former teammates are not playing. He hopes to join them in the professional ranks next year, and views his playing time in the PDL as a great platform for reaching that goal.
"Every game is competitive. Every team has at least a handful of guys that come from a good school or a good playing background, so you know you are going to be competing and be pushed at the highest level in the summer," Camargo said. "So when you get back to school, you're on a high note, you're ready to go and your form is even better when you go back to school."
K-W United is 1-1 after three weeks of action this season, having experienced the highest of highs with a 7-0 win against Toronto FC Academy and the lowest of lows with a 6-0 defeat to the Michigan Bucks. Camargo, who has one goal and three assists to his name this campaign, is not worried in the slightest with the team's current form, and is eager to lead the club to another title run.
"I'm not done improving at any aspect of my game," Camargo said. "I want to get better at offense and defense, so I'm prepared as can be if an MLS team calls upon me in the draft. To do that, I've got to come to training every day. I've got to show these guys what it takes to build a championship team because a lot of these guys weren't on the team last year. The responsibility is on me to show them how much they have to work, which pushes me to get better every day."