Angelo Dennett of Salt Lake Academy High School

Prep Spotlight: Angelo Dennett won awards as a junior varsity player with Salt Lake Academy High School.

(Courtesy of Lorenzo Dennett) Angelo Dennett, sophomore at Salt Lake Academy High School, is making his presence known with the Griffins.

Angelo Dennett

School: Salt Lake Academy

Grade: Junior

Sport: Soccer

Angelo Dennett loves to add a little flair to his game, whether it’s fancifully dribbling past defenders or passing to his Salt Lake Academy High School teammates with a how-did-he-do-that quality. He says his game has some people referring to him as “young Neymar.”

But not everyone revels in Dennett’s penchant for pyrotechnics on the pitch.

“There’s its pros and its cons,” Dennett said. “It feels good to be able to do that. But obviously, when those certain things happen, people tend to get a little hot-headed and they don’t like it. I do get fouled a lot, I do get hit a lot. But it’s part of the game and I know what it comes with.”

Dennett scored eight goals as a sophomore on the junior varsity team last season. He won the team’s Player of the Year, Top Scorer and Attacking Player of the Year awards.

But the junior will move up in the ranks and play varsity this spring.

“We have high hopes for Angelo this year,” Griffins coach Oli Brittain said. “He is a very exciting player to watch and I’m sure will provide many goal contributions.”

Dennett welcomes the comparisons to Neymar, one of the most well-known players in international soccer. But he ultimately wants to make a name for himself.

“It’s funny,” Dennett said when asked his feelings about the comparison. “It’s cool and I think it’s an honor to be compared to a great player. But at the end, I want to have my own name and be my own player, be my own person.”

Dennett has big goals for himself when it comes to soccer.

“I want to go pro,” Dennett said. “Everybody says, ‘I want to be the best, I want to play against the best.’ But in order for me to do those things, I have to keep working and take baby steps. But I have the confidence. I believe in myself to be able to do that to reach [those] high levels.”

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