11 Questions With David Estrada

Oct. 2, 2008

Get to know UCLA junior forward David Estrada in this week's 11 Questions. Estrada scored his first goal of the year against UC Santa Barbara on Oct. 1, tying the game at 1-1 early in the second half after the Gauchos had taken an early lead. The Salinas, Calif. native came to UCLA as a walk-on in 2006 and ended up being selected the Soccer America National Freshman of the Year after scoring 12 goals, including two each in the NCAA Third Round and NCAA Semifinals. Following his successful freshman year, he earned his first call-up with the U.S. Youth National Team to an Under-18 camp in 2007.

1. When you first came to UCLA, you were a freshman walk-on. At the end of that season, you were the national freshman of the year. Did you ever foresee that kind of immediate success?
I never imagined that I would do so well my first year, so to be named the national freshman of the year was shocking. To this very day, I find it hard to believe that I did that well my first year. I know I worked really hard on the practice and game field, but a lot of that success is attributed to the team that I was surrounded by.

2. What was your most memorable moment on the soccer field?
My most memorable moment on the soccer field was the day I scored my first goal here at UCLA. I was still getting used to the speed of play, and that first goal gave me so much confidence. It was against USF. I was overwhelmed with joy and ran to my cousins who were in the stands.

3. Is there any special meaning to your uniform number?
At first I didn't think much of it. I was a bit disappointed because in high school I had always been number 8 because of Kobe Bryant. Then, coincidentally, that same summer he changed his number, which made me feel like it was not that bad of a number after all.

4. How did you get your nickname 'Samurai'?
It's a nickname that was given to me by my Uncle Fernando. I don't know the whole story behind it. I hated it growing up but grew to love it. Some people actually thought it was my real name.

5. You have this video on YouTube of you doing some fancy soccer tricks. Describe your craziest trick.
My craziest trick would be a combination of tricks. First, I pop the ball up low with my right foot, and as I do that I put my right foot around the ball in the air and trap between my feet. I pop it up once again behind me and in the air put my right foot around it, and the trick is complete. It actually sounds harder than it really is.

6. When you're not playing soccer, what would we likely see you doing?
Resting, eating, or sleeping

7. What is your favorite soccer team and your favorite player on that team?
My favorite team is the football club from Mexico, Cruz Azul. Currently, I don't have a favorite player, but in the past I really liked to watch Carlos Hermosillo.

8. If you could play another sport at UCLA, what would it be and why?
I would really have liked to play basketball here at UCLA. My freshman year in high school I chose to play basketball over soccer. I sort of figured after my first year that I was not going to grow anymore, so I just stuck to soccer.

9. List three words that best describe you
Strong, Humble, Believer

10. What is your favorite website?
Uclabruins.com because it has cool articles like this one, and it always keeps me up-to-date with my fellow Bruins.

11. Name your all-time UCLA Starting XI
Forwards: Tim Pierce and Myself
Midfield: Jason Leopoldo, Kyle Nakazawa, Michael Stephens and Andrew Sinderhoff
Defenders: Kiel McClung, Brad Rusin, (Luis) Miguel Serrano and Danny Suits
Goalie: Brian Perk, but I would put in Trevor Hunter in the second half

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