Marina’s McKenna Pua is Wave League girls’ soccer MVP

Marina’s McKenna Pua, second from right, is congratulated by Renee Mangold, right, and Alexis Van Horn after scoring a goal against Capistrano Valley in the 61st minute of the CIF Southern Section Division 2 quarterfinal playoff match on Feb. 19.
(Kevin Chang / Staff Photographer)

Marina High junior center back McKenna Pua has earned Wave League MVP honors in girls’ soccer for helping the Vikings win their first league title since the 1994-95 season.

Marina junior midfielder Makenna Castillo and Laguna Beach sophomore midfielder Acacia Edwards shared the league’s Offensive MVP award, while Laguna Beach senior goalkeeper Cameron Russo was the league’s Defensive MVP.

Pua, a Washington State commit, led Marina (10-9-3, 5-1 in league) to a breakthrough season. The Vikings won the league title outright and also advanced to the quarterfinals of the CIF Southern Section Division 2 playoffs before falling 3-1 to Capistrano Valley. It was Marina’s first CIF quarterfinal appearance since 2008.

Pua helped the Vikings earn eight shutouts on the season, including three in six league matches. Castillo scored the match-winning goal as the Vikings beat Newport Harbor 1-0 in the second-to-last league match to clinch the title.

First-team all-league selections for Marina included junior center back Emma Kirby, junior midfielder Haley Boren, junior forward Kaitlyn Paculba and senior goalkeeper Carly Miles.

Edwards and Russo were leaders for Laguna Beach (7-6-6, 2-1-3), which finished second in league play. The Breakers advanced to the second round of the Division 3 playoffs before losing 2-0 to Palos Verdes.

Laguna Beach sophomore center back Jordan Sprague, freshman center midfielder Baylor Lund and sophomore center midfielder Ariel Taub also earned first-team status.

Newport Harbor (16-6-4, 2-2-2) finished third in the league. The Sailors were represented on the first team by junior defenders Samara Golan and Jenna McConnaughey. Newport Harbor lost 3-1 at Troy in the first round of the Division 1 playoffs.

Fountain Valley (8-12-3, 0-5-1) was last in the league and represented on the first team by senior center midfielder Samantha Escobar and senior center forward Micaela Villafuerte. Escobar had six goals and a team-best 10 assists, while Villafuerte tallied a team-best nine goals and four assists.

Marina’s second-team selections included senior defensive midfielder Leandra Gimenez, senior outside back Lori Mandarino and senior forward Felicia Hyde. Laguna Beach had junior outside back Maija Shaw, junior center back Julie Jakobsen and freshman left back Macy Draper on the second team.

Newport Harbor senior defender Nicole Laz and junior goalkeeper Jessica Gardner earned second-team honors, as did Fountain Valley senior forward Summer Khalil and junior outside back Zoe La Clair.


Support our sports coverage by becoming a digital subscriber.

For more sports stories, visit or follow us on Twitter @DailyPilotSport.