CCS Senior of the Year
AUREA MARTIN, CHRISTOPHER
It would have been easy for the Christopher High girls soccer program to slide down a notch or two in the competitive PCAL-Gabilan this past season, fielding a team which featured seven freshmen and five sophomores. Instead, senior Aurea Martin made sure the Cougars stayed on track.
The Northwestern commit led the way offensively with 18 goals scored this year, earning a share of the league’s MVP award in the process. Most importantly, however, was her all-around presence as she led that young squad back to the top of the league standings and all the way to the CCS Division I title game.
“In my 18 years of being involved with high school and collegiate athletics, I have never personally been around or coached an athlete, of either gender, who is a more perfect example of what a true team captain and leader should be,” said Christopher coach Matt Oetinger. “Aurea’s talent is evident, but her approach to her teammates and peers is fantastic. She is self-sacrificing with her game play to set up other players, and the first one with words of encouragement for younger players.”
That’s not to say that Martin’s play on the field did not speak for itself. The Cougars opened the season against a defensively-stout Saratoga team, and Martin netted the game-winner in a 1-0 victory. Two games later, during the challenging Fremont Firebird Classic, Martin scored the only goal again, this time in a loss to Saint Francis, and then exhibited a phenomenal ability to possess the ball and create turnovers during a scoreless draw against defensive-minded St. Ignatius.
Later in the year, her ability to create turnovers was key during a 3-0 win over perennial league power Salinas, and that was after she had scored all three goals during an earlier 3-2 win over the Cowboys. With the focus of the opposing defense squarely on Martin in the post-season, she instead served as a distributor during a 3-0 win over Aragon, assisting on a key goal in the quarterfinals. Her midfield presence and ability to find the net in a penalty kick shootout was then key during a semifinal win over Aptos, which lifted the Cougars into the section title game.
All of the different aspects to Martin’s game and approach come as no surprise to her local community, which also knows her as the Christopher High Student Body President.
“The level of success we had as a program this year could not have happened this year without Aurea’s leadership, her acceptance of our younger girls on a social level, and the level of character she possesses,” Oetinger added. “When she had a hamstring injury during the season, and could not work out, she still never missed a single practice, and she coordinated and set-up all of the team bonding dinners. We will always be her biggest fans as she moves on to the next level.”
For her efforts throughout the season, we are pleased to recognize Aurea Martin as the Prep2Prep Central Coast Section Senior of the Year.
Other players considered include St. Ignatius’ Lauren Frohan, Saratoga’s Sasha Pickard and San Benito’s Carly Lowi.
NOTE: We would like to thank our media partners, coaches, parents, players and fans for contributing photos for our all-section features.
We salute all of the players that have made this a wonderful season of CCS soccer.