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News - Details

College Preview: Community College (Men & Women)


Wednesday, August 21st, 2019 -- The 2019 Arizona Community College Athletic Conference (ACCAC) soccer season is shaping up to be another hotly contested one. 

Last season, Pima College won their first ever NJCAA Men's Championship and Arizona Western Women went 20-0 during the regular season before suffering a loss three-time NJCAA National Champion, Paradise Valley Women.

Arizona has one of the strongest community college scenes in the United States and numerous players have taken advantage of it and have left for DI programs across the country. A few that did go pro include: Jessica McDonald (2019 World Cup champions went to Phoenix College), Alan Gordan (15 year pro went to Yavapai), Roger Espinoza (played in Premier League went to Yavapai), Donny Toia (7 year pro went to Pima)

Below are preview's for the men's and women's community college programs. 



Arizona Western
Coach: Kenny Dale (15th season)
Style of Play: Collective possession
Returning players: 8
2018 notes/review: First-round playoff loss in 2018
2018 College Commits to four-year programs: 7
Expectations for the year: Compete for a championship, move guys on to four-year level

Coach: Greg Johnson, Associate Head Coach Cortney Kellenaers
Style of Play: Counterattacking
Returning players: 7
2018 notes/review: Coming off a 0-20 season the guys will be looking to rebound and be a lot more competitive.
2018 College Commits to four-year programs: Manny Tadeo (Central Christian University)
Expectations for the year: To be more competitive and give up far fewer goals.
School Fun Fact: The college originally opened in 1968 and was known as Maricopa Technical College. The mascot back then was the Prospector.

Glendale Community College
Coach: Lance Thompson (1st year)
Returning players: Jose Valenzuela, Angel Del los Rios, Angel Avalos, Oscar Tuah, Josh Malla
Key Players: Kenny Samatar, Tristan Castillo, Angel Del los Rios, Josh Malla, Epsoir Muhamare, Angel Avalos
2018 notes/review: 6-14 finished in 9th place
2018 College Commits to four-year programs: Miguel Carranza (Colorado Christian)
Expectations for the year: We want to improve upon our goal differential which was -30 from a year ago. Working on becoming more consistent and competitive 
School Fun Fact: 2nd largest enrollment in Maricopa County

Paradise Valley
Coach: Christian DeVries (2nd season at PVCC- 25th year overall)
Style of Play: Ginga - We play because we love the game
Returning players: (5)
Key Players: Bruno Gomez, Thierry Byishimo, Danny Coogan, Baily Moore
2018 notes/review: Last year PVCC finished with the more wins then the previous 4 seasons
2018 College Commits to four-year programs: Marcos Rodriguez, Brain Delgado, Alberto Lopez, Tyrone Payne 
Expectations for the year: Improved team with a new outlook. PVCC has improved in every position on the field 
School Fun Fact: PVCC is ranked in the top 10% out of all community colleges in the nation

Phoenix College
Coach: David Cameron (15th season)
Style of Play: 3-4-3 attacking style
Returning players: Kazuyuki Hata, Gilberto Sanchez, Danny Coronado & Jose Romero
Key Players: Kazuyuki Hata & Gilberto Sanchez GK
2018 notes/review: Finished 2nd in the ACCAC lost in the semi-finals in the tournament (5 starters out due to injuries by playoffs)
2018 College Commits to four-year programs: Arial Aguas & Reynaldo Gaytan (GCU), Musa Morris (Liberty University), Noe Ancira & Aser Kedjebe (Concordia University of Wisconsin), Jungi Iriguchi (Hawaii Pacific)
Notable Alumni: Mitchel Garcia Captain of Atlanta Silverbacks
Expectations for the year: Not sure, we have a lot of incoming freshmen but we will find out soon
School Fun Fact: 2020 marks the 100th year of our existence

Coach: David Cosgrove (21st season)
Returning players: We return 13 players- 5 starters from 2018
Key players: All starters from 2018 - Nils Roth- GK- 1st team All American- Led the NJCAA in Goals against and least amount of goals given up- From Switzerland
Ricky Gordillo- 1st team All American- 2nd in the country in Assts- From Phoenix
Itsuki Ishihara- CM- From Japan- All Tournament team
Isaias German- Defensive Mid- From Phoenix
Martin Cardenas- CB- From Tucson- Region I Tournament MVP
2018 notes/review: Pima College was the NJCAA National Champions with a 26-2 Record. A record 3 All Americans- Hugo Kamentani, Nils Roth, Ricky Gordilo. Hugo Kamentani - NJCAA National Player of the Year, NJCAA National Tournament MVP, ACCAC Player of the Year, School Record 30 Goals, Including 8 game-winners, 4 Golden Goal game, winners including National Semi and National Championship. Almost every school record was broken - 18 wins in a row, 26 wins in a year, 14-0 at Kino Sports Complex, ACCAC Conference Champions, NJCAA Region I Champions- West District Champions- NJCAA National Champions
2018 College Commits to hour-year programs: Jacob Pacheco (Sienna University - DI), Kaskile Zawadi (Fairleigh Dickerson University- DI), Abraham Espinoza (Dixie State- DII moving to DI), Daniel Suazo (Adams State- DII)
Notable Alumni:

  • 2010- Donny Toia- MLS- Montreal/Orlando/RSL(Current)
  • 2015- Jason Romero- UCLA/Portland- 3rd Division Sweden(Nykoping)- ACCAC Player of the Year- All American
  • 2010- Minh Vu- (Penn State) Rochester Rhinos- ACCAC Player of the Year- All American
  • 2008- Travis Sanchez- Oregon State- All American
  • 2014- Arturo Vega- Metro State- DII- ACCAC Player of the Year- All American
  • 2016- Hector Banegas- Metro State DII- All American
  • 2017- AJ Valenzuela- San Diego State- ACCAC Player of the Year- All American
  • 2017- Julian Gaona- Wangaratta City FC(Australia)

School Fun Fact: Since 2010 Pima College has appeared in 5 National Tournaments, 3 of the last 4 NJCAA National Final Fours, 5 Straight Region Championship Games, Never missed the ACCAC/Region I Playoffs since I took over 1998- 14 Region I Championship Appearances.

Scottsdale Community College
Coach: Ramiz Sabljic (3rd Season)
Style of Play: Possession Oriented 
Returning players: 9
2018 notes/review: 2018 was another improving year for the program finishing 1 place out of the playoffs, recording positive results against NJCAA Nationally Ranked opponents Yavapai College (Away win 2-1), Phoenix College (Away win 1-0), Arizona Western College (Home 1-1 2OT Tie).
2018 College Commits to four-year programs: 4 players
School Fun Fact: The home of the Fighting Artichokes.

Yavapai College
Coach: Mike Pantalione (31st season, 621-59-30)
Style of Play: A crisp game that emphasizes a balanced passing attack, teamwork and sportsmanship.
Returning players: Six
Key Players: MF-Kevyn Lo and D-Gabriel Claudio
2018 notes/review: Yavapai has captured 77 conference, region, district, and national championships. Unfortunately, 2018 was the only year in their storied history the Roughriders did not achieve one of the four major titles.
2018 College Commits to four-year programs:  Jose Perez Flores (University of Illinois-Chicago), William Baynham (UC-Santa Barbara), Jacob Downey (Cal State-Dominguez Hills), Andrew Rivera (Montana State-Billings), Tyler Trump (Utah Valley University), Angel Lujan (Dixie State).
Notable Alumni: Roger Espinoza (Sporting Kansas City/Honduras National Team), Justin Meram (Atlanta United FC/Iraq National Team), Alan Gordon (14-Year retired MLS player, USA National Team).
Expectations for the year: The Roughriders have built an outstanding reputation nationwide with four-year university coaches and hope to continue their winning tradition entering the 2019 season.  
School Fun Fact: There has been only one head soccer coach and only one assistant soccer coach in school history.


Arizona Western
Coach: Nicole Acosta (2nd season)
Returning Players: Elizabeth Ephraim, Asare Vera, Nastia Loughran and Katya Loughran 
Key Players: Elizabeth Ephraim and Asare Vera 
2018 Notes: Conference Champions, Payer of the Conference, Coach of the Conference, Record was 21-3, Made it to NJCAA Tournament 
2018 Commits: 6 and 3 to D1 programs 
Notable Alumni: Chris Boateng and Greta Espinoza 

Coach: Greg Johnson (12th season)
Style of Play: Toe-N-Go
Returning players: 4
Key Players: With such a small roster all of them are key
2018 College Commits to four-year programs: Allison Kolsrud-Missouri Baptist University, Sydney Phillips (Mesa Benedictine University) Estefanny Salazar (Arizona Christian)
Notable Alumni: Sam Bush went on to play at GCU and recently competed on American Ninja Warrior.
Expectations for the year: Integrate a new set of players into the team and try to be as competitive as possible.
School Fun Fact: Pound for pound the Gecko is the mightiest lizard in the world

Mesa Community College
Coach: Andrew Guarneri (Drew) (12th season)
Style of Play: Would like to play possession but we will use whatever method we need to in order find a result
Returning players: 7 returning players
Key Players: Won't really know this until we start playing games and see who stands out for us - I would say I have a few that I expect to stand out. They are Kyla Galdos, Berkeley Larsen, Annabella Bara and Caitlyn Waller.
2018 College Commits to four-year programs: Ellie Beltz and Lizbeth Medina both are at Park University. Megan Belles committed to Ottawa (Surprise).
Expectations for the year: Expect to compete for a playoff spot and anything above that is a bonus.
School Fun Fact: At one point, MCC was in the top 5 in the nation for student enrollment

Pima College
Coach: Kendra Veliz (18th season)
Style of Play: The beautiful game
Returning players: 10
Key Players: Our starting defense last year consisted entirely of Freshman including All-Conference player Brianna Lewis so our backline will be more experienced this year
2018 College Commits to four-year programs: Kylee Martin (Southwestern Oklahoma State University)
Expectations for the year: To have a better record and to go farther in playoffs than last year
School Fun Fact: Roster is almost always all players from southern AZ, we are proud of what we achieve with our "homegrown" players.

Scottsdale Community College
Coach: Ramiz Sabljic (3rd season)
Style of Play: Possession Oriented 
Returning players: 19
2018 notes/review: 2018 was a positive year for a very young SCC Women's Soccer team (19 Freshmen), pushing one step further into the playoffs than in 2017 - ultimately falling to AZ Western College in the Region semiginal on the road 1-0. 
School Fun Fact: The home of the Fighting Artichokes.