South Bay Matrix competitive soccer teams put on an impressive show over the holiday weekend, with six teams making the finals of Memorial Day tournaments. As of press time, at least two champions were crowned. Overall, the following South Bay teams made finals: B2007 (Memorial Day Super Cup Champions), G2004 (Memorial Day Super Cup Champions), B2005 (Memorial Day Super Cup Finalist), G2006 (Poway Country Shootout Finalist), B2009 (Memorial Day Super Cup Finalist), G2002 (Albion Las Vegas Memorial Cup Finalist). South Bay Matrix is the competitive soccer arm of South Bay AYSO. “We only have eight teams overall, and to have six of them make tournament finals in one weekend is an impressive accomplishment,” said Anthony Millican, South Bay Matrix Coordinator.
South Bay teams have a noticeable style of play, blending skillful soccer with tactical awareness. An example is B2007, which is coached by father and son combination Jose Govea and Jose Antonio Govea, respectively. The younger Govea was a South Bay AYSO standout in his youth, and is passing on his soccer knowledge to a new generation of South Bay players. The B2007 won their tournament final 3-2 vs. GPS SD, with a “golden goal” in the waning minutes of sudden death overtime.
South Bay’s G2004 and B2009 teams are coached by Hector Romo, whose girls cruised to a 4-1 victory over Santee Matrix and whose boys lost a nail-biter in overtime on a golden goal.
South Bay’s G2002 team is building momentum for its second appearance in the Far West Regional Championships in three years. The reigning CalSouth State Cup Presidents Division Champions start play the Regionals in Salt Lake City starting on June 12. As part of its preparations, the team entered the Albion Las Vegas Memorial Cup tournament for the long weekend. The South Bay girls reached finals, which were to be played at 12:30 p.m. Monday, and the results were not known at press time.
“The G2002 team is so dominant, we needed to place them in the Coast Soccer League the last two seasons, which is the gaming circuit north of San Diego County,” Millican said. “Their games are in Orange County, and the Inland Empire because there was no competition left for them in San Diego County.”
Nearly all of South Bay’s G2002 squad consists of “home grown” players developed in South Bay AYSO Region 712, from South San Diego and Imperial Beach. Coach Polo Aviles himself is a Mar Vista High alumnus. Winning the State Cup was an incredible accomplish, a first for South Bay Matrix.
The South Bay girls are pioneering in another sense as well. They will play under the new “AYSO United” brand, in South Orange County. AYSO United is AYSO’s official club program, where players are selected through a tryout. Once selected, players are guaranteed 50 percent of playing time. Players will also enjoy a more advanced play, participate in intense competition and receive cutting-edge training while still enjoying the benefits of AYSO and its Six Philosophies.
The G2002 team is actively fundraising for assistance in travel costs associated with the Far West Regionals. To help the team with a donation, please contact Luisa Dasis at firstname.lastname@example.org