By CHANDLER LUCAS
The boys soccer team has hit the ground in a dead sprint to kick off 2018. The boys have eclipsed an overall record of 11-4 and currently have the most wins in the WYL. However, West Yosemite League standings are decided on league records, not overall. So with the Miners standing at 1-1 in league play, they sit in 4th place at the moment. But that’s a very deceiving fact because these boys are winners, and they want revenge at the heartbreak they suffered in last year’s semi final against Golden West. The boys in green have tallied 48 goals just 15 matches in the season (3.7 goals per match). That’s by far the most in WYL, another reason why I believe 4th place isn’t an accurate representation of this team. They’re good, they’re aggressive, and they’re experienced. That’s a great formula for a championship-contending team.
They’re anchored by seniors Andrew Garcia (last year’s WYL MVP, Forward), Tyler Esteves (Defender), Connor Lawton (Defender), Bradley Kampen (Defender), Grant Cahill (Goalkeeper), Jacob Perez (Forward), and Alex Saldana (Forward). Junior forward Dakotah Ybarra is also the team’s leader with 14 goals.
That’s a lineup right there. The Miners are flooded with threats up front to compliment the brick wall they have with the big boys on defense. Personally, I’ve played with a few of these kids back in my soccer days. And let me say, they’re some animals. But don’t let my biased opinion do the talking, let the numbers do that. Numbers never lie, and the numbers are pointing at this team being a real contender.
But the boys aren’t the only ones making El Diamante soccer look good. Right there alongside them are the girls, and they too show some signs of greatness. They sit with a respectable record of 7-4-2 and a league record of 1-1-1. Just like the boys, they sit at 4th place in WYL. Although the season is still very early, this is another team that is capable of going on a tear towards the postseason. We’ve seen stretches like this from El Diamante athletics before, especially this year.
Brianna Gomez (SR, Forward) and Carli Gordon (SO, Forward) are the teams leading scorers with a combined total of 18 goals. One thing that will be fun to watch will be the Dwelle sisters. Makayla has been a proven leader and has had lots of success back in the Fall during volleyball. And now with soccer, she’s partnered up with her little sister, Maddy. Although Maddy is just a freshman, she’s tallied 3 assists as a midfielder and has played in all 13 games.
Maddy Dwelle and Carli Gordon are both two pieces of young talent that will be huge for the Green Sea in upcoming years. Gordon already proved herself with a strong freshman season on varsity, and with the Dwelle now being given the same opportunity; the Lady Miners have the opportunity to make deep runs for a long time. With the combination of Gomez, Gordon, and now the Dwelle’s, they can be awfully dangerous.