It’s now been a half-dozen seasons consecutively that Arcadia High has sat high atop the Pacific League standings.
And as is often standard, to the league winners go the league spoils.
Arcadia senior Eden Hardy was voted Pacific League Player of the Year, but shared it with Burbank senior standout Kira Bochard.
While Crescenta Valley Coach Tyrasha Peterson takes nothing away from either player, she does believe that Falcons super sophomore Brianna McReynolds should’ve earned a share of the coveted award.
“I didn’t get the decision that I wanted. I think [McReynolds] definitely deserved co-MVP this year,” Peterson said. “She put in the work this year and I think she deserved it this year. Hopefully, she continues to put in the work and she has the chance to win it in the future.”
Hardy led the Apaches (20-4-1, 14-0 in league) with 25 goals and 10 assists, while McReynolds had 31 goals and 12 assists, both team-highs, for the second-place Falcons (16-5-1, 11-2-1). Bochard’s numbers for fourth-place Burbank were not available at time of publication.
Locally, McReynolds was joined on the first team by Crescenta Valley teammates Shelby Reif and Nicole Yim, Glendale’s Rita Gregorian and Hoover’s Remi Miller.
McReynolds scored at least a goal against all seven teams in the Pacific League and, as evidence that her game didn’t falter no matter the competition, she also tallied points in four of the Falcons’ five losses.
“As a sophomore, she had a tremendous season,” Peterson said. “She came back after a season with her club team and she had developed amazingly as a player with her field vision and her skill.
“She just brought a presence to our frontline.”
While McReynolds was a dazzling offensive force, Yim, a junior, was a consistent and versatile contributor who played forward and defender.
“She came up clutch for us,” Peterson said. “I don’t feel like we had a bad game from her all year.”
Yim had four goals and six assists.
Reif, a senior, was a captain, four-year player and steady force along the backline.
“She held down the backline,” Peterson said of Reif, who had three goals and two assists. “She definitely was just calm and collected, the kind of personality you want back there.”
A multiple-time All-Area and All-Pacific League honoree, Hoover’s Miller received first-team recognition for the first time.
“Wow! I finally made first team,” Miller said. “I knew ending the season in a lower place made it where I wasn’t eligible, so thank you to my coach and the other coaches for making an exception for me. I’m so happy!”
Traditionally, the All-Pacific League girls’ soccer team (and many other sports within the league) is determined by an allotment based on final standing.
As Hoover (6-13, 4-10 in league) finished seventh, normally it would not be slotted with a first-team player, but Miller was an exception. Bochard’s selection as co-MVP likely also played into matters as Burbank did not receive a first-team selection.
Miller was a second-team all-league selection in each of the last two seasons.
This season, one in which she also played her share of defense when not up top, she tallied a team-high 12 goals along with three assists.
“Even a team that finishes seventh can still have a player good enough to start on any team in the league, which I believe we did,” Hoover Coach Sarah Strange said. “Fortunately, there were other coaches who agreed.
“Remi is an outstanding player who deserves recognition for her abilities. I’m beyond excited that she finally got the recognition she deserves in this very competitive league.”
Grigorian was a junior center midfielder for Glendale (7-10-1, 5-8-1 in league for fifth place). Glendale did not keep season stats.
“Rita Grigorian was the playmaker of the team,” Nitros Coach Victor Aquino said. “Her skills made it difficult to keep up with her.
For Crescenta Valley, senior goalie Nicole Jabourian and senior midfielder Emily Jabourian earned second-team honors. Emily Jabourian had three goals and two assists, while Nicole Jabourian had a 1.56 goals-against average and added a goal and five assists as a field player.
Senior forward Nikki Collins of the Falcons garnered honorable mention. She scored seven goals and tallied seven assists.
Senior defenders Camila Castaneda and Jocelyn Carranza of Glendale were team captains who received second-team recognition and an honorable mention, respectively.
Hoover senior sweeper Mary Deyell (one goal) notched a second-team honor while senior midfielder/forward Emily Sawitskas (nine goals, three assists) garnered honorable mention.