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San Antonio Scorpions defender Julius James #3 and New York Cosmos midfielder Leo Fernandes #22 fight for the ball during the first half of a game at Hofstra University's James M. Shuart Stadium on Saturday, May 23, 2015. (Credit: Brad Penner)
Typography

Scorpions defender Julius James might not be the guy who gets his name in bright lights with goals and assists, but he is as important to the success of the team as those on whose boots goals are created. James' has seen it all in his years of playing soccer and he uses that experience to make himself and his teammates better.

“Julius is a leader,” Scorpions Head Coach Alen Marcina said. “He’s a veteran on the field.”

The Trinidad and Tobago native is very loquacious off the pitch, but lets his actions do the talking on it. He is not afraid to get his uniform dirty or leave some skin on the field if it means preventing the other team from getting a shot on goal or completing a pass.

“I feel like I have experience from playing for this long, I feel like because I’m a bit older I can help the younger guys, help them a long,” James said. “Alen and I talk a lot about the game, we talk a lot about a lot of things. I’m honored that he would consider me to be [a leader]. Now I guess I feel like I am one.”

The leadership of James is on display both on the training ground and in the games. He has help along the way from fellow grizzled vet of the back line, Adrian Cann. The two have formed a strong partnership on the backline and do much to keep their 'keeper out of dangerous situations.

"We keep encouraging each other. We still push through,” James said. “I think the team is coming together now. It takes time for that to happen when you have a team with a lot of new players.“

After a slow start to the season, the Scorpions have turned things around heading into the NASL's siesta between the Spring and Fall Seasons. James will let his body rest over the break, but he's also eager to continue working on his craft and making sure that he does his best to help his teammates so that the rough start to the spring is not repeated in the fall.

“A lot of time when goals are scored it is simple mistakes that we could have alleviated before,” James said. “Now we are focusing more on cutting out the simple mistakes and having clean sheets. We also have to be committed to get into the box and we have to want it more than the other guy.”