Charlie Petro Named 2018 NJYS Comeback Player of the Year

Charlie Petro
Photo by Jeffrey Auger.

Charlie Petro Was Formally Honored at NJYS Awards Dinner Presented by RWJBarnabas Health

New Jersey Youth Soccer recently hosted its 31st Annual NJYS Awards Dinner presented by RWJBarnabas Health, where many players, coaches and members of the soccer community were celebrated at the Pines Manor in Edison, N.J. One of the honorees that night was Charlie Petro, who was selected as the 2018 Comeback Player of the Year Presented by JAG-ONE Physical Therapy.

“We at FC Copa Academy are incredibly proud of Charlie Petro on his amazing determination and competitive spirit,” said Roberto Aguas, who is the Executive Director of Coaching and Founder/President of FC Copa Academy. “His desire and fight to get back on the soccer field after his injury was indicative of the kind of teammate he truly is. Charlie is always a ‘team first’ young man, and he is a remarkable role model for younger players and a tremendous representative of our Academy. We are grateful to the Petro family for all of their support and care, and we are thankful to NJYS and JAG-ONE for recognizing the heart and spirit of this fine young man.”

Petro suffered an injury during the first game of the Spring 2018 season while playing goalkeeper and making a critical save for his team. After landing awkwardly, it was later confirmed at the hospital that he had broken both the radius and ulna bones in his arm. For the next three months, Petro was confined to a cast and instructed that he could not participate in any kind of physical activity. After finally getting his cast removed, he then spent his entire summer undergoing physical therapy at a rate of two to three times a week before he was allowed to return to the soccer field.

One of the greatest hardships that Petro had to overcome presented itself after the physical therapy. Admittedly, he said that it took him some time to regain his confidence and feel comfortably when he dove onto his side. However, his confidence continued to grow through the short fall season, and he has since worked himself into the same form where he was before suffering the injury a year ago.

“On behalf of the entire JAG-ONE Physical Therapy team, I am proud to present the 2018 Comeback Player of the Year Award to Charlie Petro from FC Copa Academy,” said John Gallucci Jr., CEO of JAG-ONE Physical Therapy. “Recovering from injury is never easy, especially after spending months healing, regaining strength, and watching your team from the sidelines. What often goes unnoticed is the emotional healing that coincides with fully recovering from injury and getting back on the field. Charlie’s perseverance and determination is truly inspirational, and we are proud to honor him as our 2018 Comeback Player of the Year.”

To find out more about New Jersey Youth Soccer or to contact us directly, please email Also make sure to follow us on social media: @NJYouthSoccer

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