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CV coach wins award
Citlaly Salinas named WAC co-Defensive Player of the Year
Freshman Citlaly Salinas had a productive first season with Central Valleys varsity girls soccer team. She was voted WAC co-Defensive Player of the Year. - photo by DALE BUTLER/The Courier

Central Valley's varsity girls soccer program earned two major awards during the Western Athletic Conference year-end coaches meeting on Feb. 20 at Pacheco High School.

Maria Briones was voted WAC Coach of the Year.

Citlaly Salinas was named co-Defensive Player of the Year.

Briones and Salinas, both newcomers, helped lead the Hawks to their second straight conference title. Central Valley compiled a 13-1-1 record.

"I'm very honored and humbled to receive this award," Briones said. "This is for the girls. I had a good group. They bonded and had fun. They were really coachable. My strategy was to attack and get results. It was a very successful season."

Briones follows in the footsteps of former Central Valley leader Cyndi Meshach, who was selected WAC Coach of the Year the previous two seasons.

The Hawks maintained their winning tradition.

"It was a quick and easy transition because we've had a connection for a while," said Briones, a Spanish teacher at Central Valley. "Some of the girls are my students. I coached some of them at the JV level. They go into my classroom during lunch."

Salinas, a freshman, anchored Central Valley's defense.

"I brought my list of nominations to the all-league meeting," Briones said. "All of the coaches had something to say about her. She did amazing."

Citlaly contributed at forward prior to switching positions.

"She is very smart," Briones said. "Her attitude is one of the best aspects she has. She never complains. She will do anything you tell her to do. She has the potential to be a great player."

Central Valley's Jocelyn Lopez, Abigail Martinez, Jacquelyn Sanchez, Jacquelyn Chavez, Mariana Garibay, Mixtly Vega and Laiza Quintero also earned all-conference honors.

Jocelyn and Abigail were both selected to the WAC First Team.

Briones nominated team captains Lopez and Martinez for Most Valuable Player.
Senior Miranda Alvear of third-place Livingston was voted WAC MVP.

"It was my first time being in the all-league meeting," Briones said. "I was excited for her (Jocelyn). When she didn't get it, I was completely shocked. I strongly believe she should have been MVP. The player that got it is my niece-in-law. I give props to her. She's a great player. Of course, I'm happy for her."

Lopez, a sophomore striker, collected 24 goals and 16 assists.

"She worked so hard," Briones said. "She played with no fear. She got around people so easily. She took everything serious."

Martinez, a sophomore midfielder, totaled 10 goals and 12 assists.

"It's amazing to watch Abby," Briones said. "She has so much skill and power. She makes everything she does look so easy."

Central Valley's Jacquelyn Sanchez, Laiza Quintero, Mixtly Vega, Mariana Garibay and Jaquelynn Chavez received second-team all-conference accolades.

Sanchez, a sophomore forward/midfielder, had 13 goals and seven assists.

Quintero, a junior forward, had 12 goals and three assists.

Vega, a sophomore midfielder, had eight goals and 11 assists.

Garibay, a junior defender, had one goal and four assists.

Chavez logged playing time at goalkeeper.

Central Valley will vie for its third straight WAC title and fourth consecutive playoff berth in 2018.