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SF Glens Soccer Spotlight: Girls’ Prep Player of the Year finalists 

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Vanessa Keel (7) of Mission marks Washington’s Yami Siguenza during a game this season. (Courtesy / Mission Athletics)

By Ryan Maquiñana
Special to S.F. Examiner

The San Francisco Glens Soccer Club of USL League Two are proud to partner with the Examiner in featuring boys’ and girls’ high school soccer in The City every Sunday.

Who are the best high school girls’ soccer players in San Francisco?

With the season winding down, the Examiner—with the help of local coaches, players, and media—has scoured the public and private school leagues to identify and recognize the top talent in The City. As a result, we have narrowed down one of the deepest lists in years to present the finalists for the inaugural San Francisco Prep Player of the Year Awards.

Readers will have the opportunity to get involved in the outcome. If you log on to sfglens.com, your online ballots will count for one-third of the vote. The remaining two-thirds of the tally will consist of votes from athletic directors, coaches, and local media.

The winners, along with the inaugural All-San Francisco Boys’ and Girls’ Teams of the Season, will be announced at the conclusion of the Northern California regional finals.

GIRLS’ PLAYER OF THE YEAR FINALISTS

Ella Bhat, senior midfielder, Washington: Despite fighting through a nagging back injury, Bhat led the Eagles in goals and assists. Her presence alone kept Washington in the CIF-SF playoff hunt despite one of their most trying seasons in years.

“She was my coach on the field. I have never had a player as thoughtful and giving towards the kids that have never played, and at the same time lead on the field as an example of how to get things done. … She is the type of player that can play on any team and stand out.” – Washington head coach Dwayne Moore 

Alyssa Forsman, senior defender, Sacred Heart Cathedral: Forsman’s name came up with several opposing coaches with good reason. With a motor that won’t stop and outstanding positioning, her ubiquitous presence on the field has flustered forwards in the WCAL.

“Alyssa’s just really tough. She reads the game well and the back line is so much stronger when she’s out there. She makes no mistakes and gives everyone a platform to succeed.” – University head coach Chance Daniel 

Lauren Froman, senior midfielder, St. Ignatius: Committed to Pacific. Froman has been a cerebral yet lethal attacking weapon for first-year coach Tracy Hamm. With nine goals and one assist, she has been the bellwether for the Wildcats in their WCAL title run.

“Lauren is our playmaker. She’s very talented, very technical, and understands what you need to do win games. I’m really excited to see what she’s going to do at the next level.” – Hamm 

Gabby Garland, senior defender, University: Garland stabilized the Red Devils’ young squad by playing almost every position on the field. Not only did she lead University in goals, she also played the role of shutdown defender for coach Chance Daniel in their first NCS tournament win since 2014.

“Gabby plays primarily as an outside back for her club team, but she led us in goals and points. Most notably, Gabby’s effort and attitude set the tone for a team with five freshmen and one sophomore.” – Daniel

Melissa Hernandez, junior forward, Leadership: Hernandez’s scoring touch was on display this season. She paced the Griffins with goals and led them to an unprecedented regular season where they finished unbeaten in CIF-SF Division 2 play. 

Melissa has been a great player for us. She’s only a junior but based on what she’s done over the past three years, she’s probably the school’s all-time leading scorer alreadyShe just keeps making history.” – Leadership athletic director/head coach Antonio Medina

Vanessa Keel, senior forward, Mission: Keel generally towers over her defenders, but don’t mistake her as a one-dimensional striker. Adept with both feet, Keel has paced Robert Escobar’s Bears in scoring in their run to a second straight CIF-SF final.

“Having a quality player like Vanessa, who has experience playing at the club level is big for us, because we’re not starting from scratch technically, and tactically, we’ve been able to do so much more to grow the program.” – Mission assistant coach Jose Gallardo

Hannah McCord, junior forward, Lowell: Committed to Portland. Hannah will likely repeat as the CIF-SF Forward of the Year. Her scoring touch and ability to create for others have wowed scouts and have lifted the Cardinals into NorCal contention once more.

“She’s our consistent midfielder. She can move the ball really well and go in any direction. Hannah serves an important role on the field for us.” – Lowell head coach Amber Wilson

“Hannah is the motor in the midfield. We have two other starting midfielders who really are strong, but they don’t have her quality to dominate the ball and speed of play and shift the balance across the field.” – Lowell assistant coach Gene Vrana

Julietta Seirmarco, sophomore forward, Urban: A dangerous asset in several situations, Seirmarco always had opposing coaches seeking her out on the field. She paced the Blues with 10 goals and added three assists.

Julietta is our most dangerous threat going forward. She’s incredibly effective one-on-one and is our top goal scorer.” – Urban head coach Bobby Quinlan

Click HERE for our SF Soccer Boys’ Player of the Year finalists.

NEXT SUNDAY: Our inaugural San Francisco Boys’ and Girls’ Coach of the Year finalists.

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