The 2016-2017 girls soccer seasons for San Pedro, Port Of Los Angeles and Mary Star Of The Sea was once again a great one, but for the first time in three years, it did not end with all three schools winning their respective league championships. Yet it had a couple of firsts.
One first in particular... was a CIF championship.
After six years of chasing, coming close and coming up short time and time again, POLA would finally come away with its first CIF-Los Angeles City Section championship on March 3, when Gisselle Mora's dramatic goal with two minutes left in sudden death overtime gave the Polar Bears a 2-1 victory over previously undefeated Grant of Van Nuys for the Division II crown.
Another first... was a pair of signing day ceremonies.
On February 1, POLA senior forward Anna Vidovich signed a national letter of intent to play collegiate soccer at Stevens Institute Of Technology in Hoboken, New Jersey, and just an hour later, San Pedro senior midfielder Maddie Villela would sign on to play at Marymount California close to home in Rancho Palos Verdes, California.
POLA, although losing 3-0 to San Pedro on December 23, would end up becoming the toast of the town with their first CIF title, and Vidovich was a big reason why, scoring 25 goals and leading the CIF-LACS with 24 assists. In fact, Vidovich was the one who forced overtime with a clutch goal in the 79th minute of regulation. Villela and fellow senior midfielder Sydney Engel proved to be a dangerous combination for the Pirates, who won their twelfth consecutive Marine League championship and advance to the CIF-LACS Division 1 quarterfinals.
Engel would score a career-high 26 goals, tying her atop all of San Pedro with POLA's dynamic junior midfielder Briana Mancilla, who also had 19 assists for the Polar Bears and now is the all-time record holder for all San Pedro-based high schools with 88 career goals.
All these phenomenal seasons would lead to Engel and Vidovich sharing the honor as 2017 San Pedro News Pilot Prep Girls Soccer Co-Players Of The Year, and Villela (16 goals), who scored five goals in the playoffs, as the Most Outstanding Player.
Also San Pedro coaches Crystal Valdes and Chatelaine 'Shadow' Ansaldi, along with CIF-LACS Division II Coach Of The Year in POLA's Javier Torres, all share Coach Of The Year Honors. San Pedro junior goalie Carlene Luna would be named Goalie Of The Year for the third straight season, and POLA junior defender Christy Messner, is named Defender Of The Year to go along with her Crosstown League MVP honor.
San Pedro finished 18-3-2 overall, 9-0-1 in the Marine League, also repeating as Lady Pirate Cup Tournament champions, while POLA finished 18-4 with a 13-0 Crosstown League mark, scoring 125 goals as a team, and winning their seventh straight league title as a result.
Even though Mary Star did not win a third straight league title, first-year coach Taidgh Simpson still had the Stars competing day in and day out in spite of their 6-11-1 overall record, and 1-6-1 mark in the Camino Real League.
Seniors Taylor Garcia and Kaylee Rucker still managed great final seasons for Mary Star, and sophomore defender Rose Amalfitano has future All-CIF talent.
Here is the full All-San Pedro News Pilot Girls Soccer Team for 2017...
Briana Mancilla (POLA, jr.)
Keely Bales (POLA, fr.)
Samantha Martinez (San Pedro, soph.)
Kaylee Rucker (Mary Star, sr.)
Taylor Garcia (Mary Star, sr.)
Rose Amalfitano (Mary Star, soph.)
Madeline Luna (San Pedro, sr.)
Catherin Corea (San Pedro, sr.)
Britney Delgado (POLA, jr.)
Priscilla Moran (San Pedro, sr.)
Shawnie Carolla (Mary Star, sr.)
Kiriana Teofilo (San Pedro, jr.)
Kendall Dimson (POLA, soph.)
Gisselle Mora (POLA, soph.)
Katin Latka (Mary Star, jr.)
Berneice Casillas (Mary Star, soph.)
Alyssa Medrano (POLA, sr.)
Renee Ketner (San Pedro, fr.)
Angelina Camello (San Pedro, soph.)
Katelyn Viducic (POLA, fr.)
CO-PLAYERS OF THE YEAR
Sydney Engel (San Pedro, sr.)
Anna Vidovich (POLA, sr.)
MOST OUTSTANDING PLAYER
Maddie Villela (San Pedro, sr.)
GOALIE OF THE YEAR
Carlene Luna (San Pedro, jr.)
DEFENDER OF THE YEAR
Christy Messner (POLA, jr.)
COACHES OF THE YEAR
Crystal Valdes & Chatelaine ‘Shadow’ Ansaldi (San Pedro); Javier Torres (POLA).
SAN PEDRO NEWS PILOT PAST PREP GIRLS SOCCER PLAYERS OF THE YEAR
2012: Chatelaine 'Shadow' Ansaldi, San Pedro
2013: Nikki Bonilla & Alyssa Bristol, Port Of Los Angeles
2014: Isabela Van Antwerp, Port Of Los Angeles
2015: Tiffany Torres, Port Of Los Angeles
2016: Ryann Lozano, San Pedro & Briana Mancilla, Port Of Los Angeles