East Bay Girls Soccer blog returns

Greetings, girls soccer players, parents, coaches, team trainers, referees, and aficionados. The first edition of the 2013/14 East Bay High School Girls Soccer Blog has arrived.

We’re talking goals, assists, saves, nutmegs, scholarships, college connections, rankings, and whatever else makes your futbol boat float. The upcoming season will be one of change in the EBAL, with new coaches at Granada, Livermore and Carondelet. Thus far, I know of one newbie: Bob Montano has been hired to replace Jason Maratsos at Livermore. Big cleats to fill. Jason did a bang-up job getting the Cowboys on nearly equal footing with the EBAL hierarchy — no small task. One EBAL veteran coach said Maratsos deserved coach of the year consideration last season. … Carondelet and Granada have yet to make an announcement about a new coach. … If you know of any coaching scoops, feel free to share because that’s what this space is all about, scoops.

Here’s something impressive: The Cal women’s team has nine players from the East Bay Area, among those six from the EBAL, including three from San Ramon Valley. It’s a great testiment to the level of play we get to see on the high school fields.

Here are Cal’s East Bay-rooted  players: Lynsey Hromatko (Monte Vista), Tamara Aboumrad (Mission San Jose), Mekenna DeBack (Miramonte), Kaitlyn Fitzpatrick (Amador Valley), Hannah Koski (San Ramon Valley), Kory Lamet (Carondelet), Grace Leer (San Ramon Valley), Celeste Martore (Castro Valley), and Alexa Vandevanter (San Ramon Valley). Fitzpatrick has started 16 games this season and is tied for No. 2 on the team in goals, with six, and points, with 16. Vandevanter, the East Bay High School Player of the Year last season, has made nine appearances and one start. Lamet, Leer and Martore have each played in 16 games, and DeBack has played in 13 . The Bears are 9-3-5 overall and 2-3-3 in the Pac-12 Conference, but are coming off back-to-back 1-0 defeats at Oregon State and Oregon.

Also worth noting: A local quartet is figuring prominently at No. 7 Stanford. Freshmen M Stephanie Amack (Dougherty Valley) and D/F Ryan Walker-Hartshorn (Bishop O’Dowd) have each seen significant minutes. Senior D Natalie Griffen (Amador Valley) has been starting, along with Amack. Also, Stanford freshman Megan Turner (San Ramon Valley) had two goals in 16 games played.

Former Castro Valley star Micaela Castain is tearing it up at Washington State, leading the Pac-12 in goals, assists and points.

Although I write mostly about girls soccer in this space, I would be remiss in not mentioning that my old golfing buddy Keith Switzer of Newark has been hired to coach the Livermore High boys  team. Score one for the Cowboys. Switzer has a solid track record as a player and a coach, and as a DJ.

Early rankings will come in about three weeks. Cheers, MS

Matt Schwab

  • Girls Soccer rules

    Matt, Thanks for getting the soccer ball rolling. I read recently that Carondelet hired Amy Apodaca as their soccer coach. She is in the HOF at SSU and was a 3 time All American for the Sea Wolves. Not sure about her coaching skills but as a player she was brilliant.

  • BigJim

    Players are the worst coaches

  • Girls Soccer rules

    @BigJim. True unless the coach surrounds themselves with top N. Cal soccer talent. Then the coach is genuis! haha
    Expect Carondelet to get top athletes in most sports from all over the east bay every year and they will be competitive. My guess is they won’t have 2 down years in a row??

  • Matt Schwab

    Thanks for the heads up on Apodaca. I will be trying to contact her in the coming weeks. As for players making the worst coaches, the statement doesn’t make any sense to me because all coaches were players one point, right? If you mean to say “great” players make the worst coaches, there is some truth to that if the former star player lacks the ability to connect with other players or the basic understanding of other positions and tactics. But you’ve got to start somewhere, and I’m sure a three-time A.A. at Sonoma State will do just fine at the high school level. Sounds like a great hire, at first blush.

  • Matt Schwab

    Here’s some breaking news:
    Earthquakes Hall of Famer Troy Dayak is the new director of girls soccer at Granada High, and Katie Poynter will be the Matadors new coach.

    Poynter’s staff will include Dave Mahabali, an A License coach who coached for many years in Newark, and B License coach Stuart Rafferty. Dayak, who heads West Coast Soccer Club in Livermore, will oversee and help coach the program.

    Dayak, a Livermore High graduate, also has strong connections to the Livermore girls varsity team. Cowboys’ new coach Bob Montano and his assistants Vanessa Afonso Miskella and Paul Giamona are all part of the West Coast staff. Another assistant, Kendra Perry, is one of the captains on Dayak’s WPSL Wildkatz team.

    “I feel very confident that the soccer players in the Livermore programs are in good hands,” Dayak said.

  • soccerguy

    so when do you think you will have predictions for the upcoming season?

  • Matt Schwab

    Probably looking at late November. Been focused on tackle football and other fall sports these days. Anyone want to guess which team will be the most improved this season? It’s easy to pick teams such as San Ramon Valley, Monte Vista, O’Dowd, Castro Valley and Berkeley to do well. But what about the rest?

  • Girls Soccer rules

    Carondelet with new coach and much talent could be in the mix. Campolindo HS, College Park and Piedmont will be improved too. I heard CVCharter is poor man’s DLS so they may surprise folks. It would be refreshing to see some new HS break up the EBAL dominance. The best chance would be super stacked O’Dowd but SRV and O’Dowd never compete against each other….? Lots of Mustang club talent vs Bay Oaks club talent in those schools.

  • soccer fan

    Ygnacio valley is hoping to improve. Key returnees include 50 goal tandem Julia Curran and Karla ramos, as well as Norm Jara, who took the goal keeping job from the previous goalies mid season

  • KC

    Looking forward to another great year of HS Soccer. Gotta give an initial nod to Monte Vista this year. They are loaded for bear with a ton of returning talent. San Ramon loses quite a bit to graduation but reloads with some serious talent coming up from JV and a few that didn’t play last year due to injury. The coaching carousel should make the rest of the EBAL interesting to say the least. Thanks for the college update as well. Worth noting that Alyssa Alarab (SRV) and Claire Winter (Acalanes) are at UCLA and will be taking on North Carolina in the Elite 8 tomorrow. Micaela Castain was named the Pac12 player of the year

  • KC

    HS Girls Soccer in full swing No rankings?

  • mudhen

    Monte Vista put the hurt on Berkeley 2 to nil. The Jackets gave it their all, but they couldn’t put together any offence at all. Monte Vista looked very strong.

  • LL Dad

    Las Lomas girls making some noise for big improvement early on with wins over Deer Valley 3-2, Ygnacio 3-0, Mt Diablo 8-0 and ties on the road vs Northgate 1-1 and Campo 2-2 in league opener. 3-0-2 on the season.

  • AHS Supporter

    The Alameda Lady Hornets are making a drive to be league and post season contenders this year. They have a good defense and a solid midfield. Once they gain confidence playing in the final third we’ll see a very competitive team

  • The Sweeper

    If memory serves, all three SRV girls soccer teams were unbeaten last season. Reloading is possible when you have a solid talent pool. MV has a similar situation with respect to the talent pool. The battle of Danville remains a must see test of club teammates. On the boys side, MV seems to have an edge this year.

  • EBAL Dad

    Just a curious question. i want to see as much soccer (the real “football”) coverage as can be had. The boys soccer blog is usually fairly active and has new weekly posts by the covering reporter. The girls blog, is nowhere near as active with only occassional updates. (I certainly understand the conflicts of covering other HS sports) (but those seasons are over now).

    HOWEVER, when it comes to coverage IN THE PAPER it seems that girls get about the same coverage and sometimes more. What is up with that? is this CCTimes politics or something else going on?

    Don’t even get me started about amount of paper coverage of soccer v other winter sports.

    so, what gives?

  • soccerguy

    I agree with you! The girls don’t get anywhere near the coverage as the boys! Matt schwab, you need to get on this! Mostly everyone has played 8-11 games already. You should have some idea of how to rank these teams. Also, there are some great players and team efforts that are happening this season which needs to be said.

  • soccerguy

    Alameda has a good team this year. I have seen them play. They should make NCS this year. It all comes down to league play!

  • ccc

    How did all the teams look at the Tri Valley Classic? Any surprises? New up and comers?