San Pedro High Girls Soccer Wins 18th Straight League Title

Coaches and players have come and gone in the San Pedro High girls soccer program since the Marine League was reformed in the 1999-2000 season, but the end result, with the exception of one year (2005), has always remained consistently the same.

For the 18th consecutive season, San Pedro remains sitting on the league throne as they posted back-to-back season ending victories over Gardena, 4-0 this past Wednesday at Mike Walsh Pirate Stadium, followed by a 4-1 triumph at rival Narbonne of Harbor City on Friday. In all, the Pirates have been solid all year long, posting a 21-2 overall record going into the upcoming CIF-Los Angeles City Section Division 1 playoffs with the pairings coming up on Monday.

In Manuel Maciel's second year as coach, San Pedro captured their second straight Best In The West Tournament title in Montebello, while also reaching the finals of their own Lady Pirate Cup, with their only two losses coming to CIF-Southern Section powerhouses Cerritos and Wiseburn Da Vinci of El Segundo, both shutout setbacks.

Which means, if the Pirates' can't score, they can't win, which they have done 21 times this season.

So far, San Pedro's biggest wins that may benefit them down the road come playoff seeding time, have come against Granada Hills Charter and Birmingham of Lake Balboa from the West Valley League, while also defeating Eastern League champion Huntington Park, Western League runner-up Los Angeles CES, and Northern League runner-up Eagle Rock.

A bevy of scoring threats in San Pedro's arsenal will make them a tough out in the playoffs.

Freshman Leilani Phillips has been a surprise to some, but when you see her play, it won't be too much of a surprise to see that she leads San Pedro with 19 goals while also assisting on nine goals for others. Sophomore midfielder Mariyah Bumgarner, last year's Marine League Most Valuable Player, has been equally as dominant with 11 goals and six assists. Four-year senior Gracie Carrasco has provided stellar play with 10 goals and a team-leading 16 assists.

Another freshman, Molly Skolil (6 goals, 7 assists) has proven to be a long-ball threat on free kicks, evidenced by her two goals from over 20 yards away last Wednesday against Gardena.

San Pedro also received a big boost with the addition of three impact transfers from in-city neighbor Port Of Los Angeles, last year's CIF-LACS Division 3 runner-up.

Junior forward Bryanna Duarte has not lost a step from her 26-goal season last season for the Polar Bears, scoring 14 goals for San Pedro. Junior midfielder Naty Wehbe has scored five goals, while junior defender Kristin Walden has provided stellar defense alongside four-year senior captain Emily Robledo.

This team has also proven they can rise to the occasion whenever faced with adversity.

On the first week of school, the Pirates lost returning All-City senior midfielder Valerie Torres to a season-ending ACL tear and have battled when they lost both Phillps and Bumgarner for a while to lesser injuries. San Pedro rallied from a 2-0 deficit on the road in hostile territory before coming from behind to defeat Huntington Park on a last-minute game-winning goal from junior Nicole Castaneda (9 goals this season).

And not to be left out, is rising sophomore goalie Giuliana Sutrin, who has logged 1,605 minutes and made 54 saves, only allowing 17 goals to score against her. Sutrin has also shutout 13 Pirate opponents, eight of them in league play.

San Pedro is expected to receive a pretty high seed for the CIF-LACS Division 1 playoffs. 

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