Tracy High’ girls soccer program has been a model of consistency, making the playoffs the previous two years. The Bulldogs again bring back a group of seniors who were part of last year’s successful varsity squad.
Tracy went 12-7-4 last season, with a tough pre-league season and a 6-1-3 second-place finish in the San Joaquin Athletic Association, behind Lodi. Tracy got as far as the second round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division I playoffs, where they again ran up against longtime playoff rival St. Mary’s.
Returning seniors Bria Outland and Nicole Gasior are three-year varsity players and two of last year’s all-SJAA selections. Goalkeeper Amanda Simonich is also a three-year varsity player. Other returning seniors include Autumn Bolton, Mariah Serrato, Rebecca Reinin and Courtney Allen.
Tracy coach Nate Perry figures he has a good balance between the old hands and rising juniors.
“I wouldn’t say there’s any one player. Just the group of them — they’re a good solid group of kids who really like each other and are going to be working hard and doing good things this year,” Perry said.
West Wolf Pack
West High coach Abel Dorado approaches the 2012 season as a work in progress.
In the Pack’s first game, a 5-1 loss against Lincoln, Dorado wanted to get all of his players in the game, and figures that by the time the Tri-City Athletic League season comes around at the end of March, that experience will make his team more competitive.
West has a core of returning players to build on, including senior sweeper Abby Crandall, who was among the Wolf Pack’s 2011 all-TCAL selections in her junior year. Other returning seniors include Anica Celestine, Lilibeth Torres, Marissa Tabangcura, Sahar Latifi, Yelda Arghandiwal and Chantel Portillo.
They return after a 7-5-4 overall finish a year ago, which includes a 4-2-4 mark in the TCAL, good for fourth place behind undefeated St. Mary’s and Tokay and Stagg, which tied for second.
Dorado said he was still taking a look at players during his team’s first game against Lincoln to see where they fit best, and he expects there will continue to be competition for the starting positions.
“I played everyone to see what they could do. We have a lot of new players,” he said. “This is what preseason is going to be about — let everyone try out and see what positions they can play, and hopefully get ready for league.”
Like the new school’s other varsity squads, Kimball High’s girls soccer team returns with the advantage of having essentially the same team as last year.
The team is set to move further up in the Valley Oak League standings this year after finishing last year behind Oakdale and Sierra, with Sierra moving on to win the section’s Division IV title. Kimball tied for third with East Union, with an 8-3-3 record in the VOL and 12-4-4 overall mark. The Jaguars only missed the VOL’s No. 3 playoff spot because of a loss in the second-to-last week against East Union.
Of the 21 players on the roster as of this week, 12 have been on the team since their first year as a junior varsity squad. The two seniors, Nicole Alexander and Natalie Lambert, were varsity players in their freshman year, Alexander at Tracy High and Lambert at West.
Returning all-VOL first-team players are juniors Adaurie Dayak and Katie Little, and sophomore Mireya Magana. Returning honorable mentions are Lambert, Rachel Johnson, Amber Lennier, Tayler Lennier and Marissa Paz.
Other juniors back for their third year on the Kimball team are Aubrey Snyder, Myra Ochoa, Melissa Frizzi, Lauren Frizzi, Lizzie Dawson, Maddison Greenlee, and Mariah Hinds.
The Millennium girls soccer team has already gotten off to a strong start in 2012, going 2-0-1 in the first week of play.
The Falcons start with a core of returning players from last year’s 14-1-1 season, when Millennium was the champion of the Central California Athletic Alliance and went on to win the Sac-Joaquin Section Division VII championship.
Nine players, including all-CCAA first team players Courtney Briggs, Salina Elias and Daisy Aguayo, plus honorable mention Anneliese Bradley, are back for the 2012 season. Elias and Nataly Solis are also in their fourth year on the team, and seniors Valerie Salamanca and Courtney Briggs also return for another season.
This year’s team also has a new head coach in Mario Ron. He is a graduate of Modesto High, attended Fresno State on a soccer scholarship, and also had studied and coached soccer at California State University, Stanislaus, in Turlock, and played professional soccer as a member of the Major League Soccer-affiliated Stockton Hydra.
Lately, as father of five, he has been a youth soccer coach, and wanted to coach a high school team as a way to put his passion and experience to work.
As someone who has coached college men’s teams, he was surprised at the speed and coordination he saw on the Falcons.
“Our first game I saw them on the field, I was amazed at how they carried themselves. I think we have a very competitive team,” he said. “Last year I know they won it all, and that puts a little pressure on me.”
Delta Charter Dragons
Delta Charter High School takes another step forward in creating new athletic programs for New Jerusalem School. This is the third year of soccer at the school, but until this year, a full-fledged girls program has been a work in progress.
The Dragons fielded a girls team in 2010 for the spring season, and last year the school didn’t have enough girls to form a team — those who wanted to play joined a coed team in the fall.
This year, the school’s soccer coach, Avo Atonian, has an entirely new squad, which will play in the Central California Athletic Alliance.
“We have a team that has the potential of going far, because we have a lot of girls who have played in city leagues before,” he said. “We have girls who have been playing for 10 years-plus.”
The team also has the potential to build for future seasons. Team captain Stephanie Pope and midfielder Darion Faye Howard are the only seniors on the 12-player roster.
Juniors include Paige Valdelamar, Patricia Flores, Mallory Clemens, Jessica Kardash and CeCe Segura, and the team also includes sophomore Alexis Votaw and freshmen Emily Quilici, Andi Aguilar, Ashlee Daugherty and Haley Andersen.
The Dragons started their season Thursday, March 1, at Holt College Prep Academy in Stockton, and will begin their league season against Millennium High on March 13 at West High, where they will play all their home games.