CAL SOUTH'S BRIGHTEST HONORED AT ANNUAL AWARDS BANQUET
February 17, 2010
LOS ANGELES, CA (February 17, 2010) - Following Soccer Nation Expo 2010 on Saturday night, February 13th, Cal South once more took to the stage of the L.A. Wilshire Grand's main ballroom to present its annual Cal South Awards Banquet. Cal South's best and brightest, including Hall of Fame inductees Julie Foudy and Eric Wynalda, were honored in a fine dining atmosphere filled with over five hundred attendees, as Cal South took the opportunity to award its outstanding teams, coaches, players, volunteers, parents and administrators from a year flush with success both on and off the soccer pitch.
Numerous soccer world luminaries could be glimpsed a crowd filled with Cal South board and staff members, Soccer Nation Expo exhibitors and award winners and their families. The luminaries included United States Soccer Federation (USSF) representatives Asher Mendelsohn and Paul Tamberino, United States Youth Soccer Vice President Evelyn Gill, US Youth Soccer Region IV Director Jolene Nielson, United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA) Region IV Director Bill Bosgraaf, California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce (CAHCC) President and CEO Joel Ayala, National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) CEO and Executive Director Joe Cummings, LA84 Foundation Vice President of Education Wayne Wilson, Fox Soccer Channel's Veronica Alvarez, and Nike Soccer Sports Marketing Manager Monica Rigali. Other Cal South sponsors and partners were also well represented at the show as well, including Chivas USA, Health & Wealth/Herbalife, the Los Angeles Galaxy, Jamba Juice, the National Collegiate Scouting Association and Northwestern Mutual Financial Network.
Over 30 Cal South members were honored during the show, including the next two alumni inducted into the Cal South Hall of Fame: Julie Foudy, the former captain of the Women's National Team who won two World Cup titles and three Olympic medals (gold in 1996 and 2004, and silver in 2000) while attaining 271 caps with the team (3rd all-time), and Eric Wynalda, the former international star who scored the first goal ever in Major League Soccer in 1996 and was the all-time leading goal scorer for the U.S. Men's National Team until passed by fellow Cal South alumni Landon Donovan in 2008. Foudy accepted her induction into the Cal South Hall of Fame via video from Hawaii where she was vacationing, while current Fox Soccer Channel announcer Wynalda took the podium to tell a series of amusing vignettes regarding his children and their intense focus (or lack of, in one case) on his beloved game of soccer, which led to his youngest son cutely joining him onstage.
Nike's Monica Rigali passed out several coaching awards during the night. Oliver Wyss and Cle Kooiman were named as the Youngers Competitive Coaches of the Year, Cherif Zein and Jose Ocampo were named as the Olders Competitive Coaches, and Genaro Escobar and Guillermo Arzate were named as the Developmental Coaches of the Year.
For other honors, the Fox Soccer Channel Team Spirit award was awarded to the Oxnard PAL Blue BU13 team, the L.A. Galaxy Volunteer of the Year award given out to Kathleen Kelley, the Chivas USA Parent of the Year award went to Sherie Correll, and the NCSA named Sergio Llamas as their Student-Athlete of the Year. Juan Gutierrez and Laure Liedle were named as the Cal South Players of the Year, and Carla Contreras and Christian Whitehair were named as the Youth Referees of the Year. Sabrina Whetsell and Kinsey Morlang were honored as Cal South TOPSoccer Buddies, while Greta Walton was named by Cal South TOPSoccer chairperson Sandy Castillo as a TOPSoccer Angel.
Honorees were also named for each of Cal South's seven districts by their respective commissioners - Bob Turner and Terry Cords in District 1, Dr. Peter Minkoff in District 2, Dan Sheppard in District 3, Val Silveri and Paul Higgins in District 4, Stormy Medley and Rito Chisholm in District 5, Bruce Bates and Danny Moreno in District 6, and Dr. Denise Taylor in District 7. (A full list of award winners and honorees appears at the end of this article.
Former District 3 Commissioner (and wearer of a great many hats in his volunteer soccer career) Paul Doty was given the President's Award at the ceremony, and in a very moving speech, asked that some recognition be afforded another former District 3 Commissioner, the recently departed Rosemary Woodard.
Outgoing Cal South President Gregory Falk was honored with a special video tribute detailing Cal South's growth during his four-year tenure at the helm of the organization. (His successor, Johnnie Garza, was elected the new Cal South President the next morning at the Cal South Annual General Meeting held at Soccer Nation Expo in the L.A. Convention Center).
The night closed with a tribute to the Cal South teams that had captured national titles during 2009. US Youth Soccer Presidents Cup Champions, the Boys U14 Los Alamitos Titans, and the three teams that won U.S. Youth Soccer National Championships in July - the Boys U14 West Coast FC, the Girls U15 San Diego Surf and the Boys U17 CZ Elite - all jammed onto the suddenly far too short stage (a fine platform up until this point) to take in the applause and bring the night to an end in a rousing fashion.
Cal South would like to thank the sponsors of this year's show: Nike, Fox Soccer Channel and Sport Pins International, for helping to bring about such a grand show. Cal South would also like to congratulate all of this year's winners, and thank everyone who attended the 2010 Cal South Awards Banquet. See you next year in Long Beach!!
2010 CAL SOUTH AWARDS BANQUET WINNERS AND HONOREES
Championship Teams Honored: