ChubbFertal, Johnson are teammates and rivals on the field
By Keeler McJunkin
Lane United players Aidan Johnson and Casey ChubbFertal first played together as teammates at South Eugene High School. ChubbFertal was a junior and Johnson was a sophomore at the time.
After two years of playing side-by-side with the Axemen, ChubbFertal went on to play soccer at the University of Redlands in southern California while Johnson completed his senior year at South Eugene.
Johnson graduated from high school and decided to continue his soccer career at Claremont McKenna College, a rival SCIAC conference school of ChubbFertal’s Redlands team.
The two Eugene natives went from playing with each other as a midfield duo in high school, to facing off as rivals in college, and finally becoming teammates again as members of Lane United while getting to take the field for their hometown club.
“Being able to play against Casey in a college setting brought me back to practices at South Eugene and Lane United,” Johnson said. “It’s been really fun to compete with and also against a player like Casey.”
The two have built a bond through going back and forth as teammates and rivals over the last five years and respect what each other have accomplished at their respective schools.
Both teams are sitting in playoff position heading into the final five games of the regular season. ChubbFertal’s Bulldogs currently lead the SCIAC while Johnson’s Stags sit in a tie for third, but Redlands always has competitive games with Claremont.
“They’re a really good team, we always have tough games with them,” ChubbFertal said. “Aiden’s becoming a big part of that team, which is great for him and great for those guys that come from where we do in Eugene. We’re showing there are some good players coming out of there.”
ChubbFertal was named the SCIAC Men’s Soccer Athlete of the Week for his work a week ago when he provided the assist in a 1-0 win over Chapman and scored twice in a wild 5-3 win against Pomona-Pitzer. His second goal served as the game-winner for the Bulldogs.
Johnson is happy to see the on-field success that ChubbFertal is enjoying this season with Redlands.
“It’s competitive out on the field, but when the game is done we’re still good friends off the field,” Johnson said. “It’s great to see him having so much success in the league right now.”
For both ChubbFertal and Johnson, playing the summer season with Lane United in their hometown is something special that they say they won’t forget.
“There are guys who come from all over the place to play on our team, but we get to play at home in front of our fans,” ChubbFertal said. “It doesn’t get any better than that.”
Lane United has been bringing the soccer community together in Eugene/Springfield for the last three years with not only players and fans, but by providing a summer team to get behind, something the area hasn’t seen before.
“I really enjoy being able to play in front of people I’ve known my entire life and rep my city,” Johnson said. “It’s great we have a club in Eugene right now and I think it’s something the city has been missing.”