Written by Bryan Samuels, Regional Commissioner for AYSO Region 214 in South Pasadena/San Marino
The South Pasadena / San Marino (Region 214) Under-12 Girls’ EXTRA team captured the region’s first ever Western States Championship, held by the American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO) this past weekend in Morgan Hill, California. Representing AYSO’s Section 1, the team won the title by first defeating Section 2’s representative Hillsborough 1-0 in the semifinal game before cruising to a 3-0 victory in the final game against Section 11’s representative West Huntington Beach.
Head coach Bryan Samuels said, “I am so happy for the girls and their families. AYSO’s EXTRA program has given us the opportunity to compete at a high level and maintain the local feel that the residents of South Pasadena, San Marino, and the surrounding communities value so much. That’s what makes this team so unique and special. I’m really proud of what they’ve accomplished.”
The team earned the right to represent Section 1 at the Western State Championship based on its performance in the sectional playoffs, defeating Palos Verdes 1-0 and then Redlands 5-0 in February 2022. Throughout the season, the team was known for its enthusiasm, unselfish play, and competitive spirit.
The team consists of Ramona Nichols (captain), Kylie Cameron, Sofia Chacon, Maelle Etienne, Kennedy Hunt, Sophia Inclan, Kaia Kooper, Lucia Mahler, Jayda Nakagawa, Esme Osugi, Amelia Samuels, Avery Windass, head coach Bryan Samuels, and assistant coach Katie Hanburger.