WILSHIRE BLVD ‚Äî When Pacifica Christian girls‚Äô soccer takes the field against Yeshiva on Thursday, perfection will be on the line.
The Seawolves have gone an unblemished 11-0 thus far this season and the finale at Marine Park gives the school a chance to record its first undefeated campaign in the sport.
“Yeah, we‚Äôve done pretty well this year,” said first-year head coach Guido Hajenius. “We went into the season realizing there is some decent talent for a small school.
“Once we shored up our midfield I knew we‚Äôd be fine.”
Hajenius was fortunate to have junior Lauren Gaston already on campus when he arrived to lead the group. The midfielder has paced the offense all season, giving her teammates somebody to look up to and emulate.
Gaston is credited with anchoring a component that Hajenius knew would lead to immediate success.
“She‚Äôs basically our top scorer and all-around strongest player,” he said of Gaston. “All the girls watch her.”
Joining Gaston in midfield have been senior Sylvano Santos and freshman Joanie Howe. Together, the trio have impressed.
“Those three have come together the way they read the game and the way they play together,” Hajenius said. “It has helped other players play at a higher level.”
While play at midfield is one of Hajenius‚Äô priorities, he knew that improving the defense would have to be the next step if his Seawolves were to excel.
It was another freshman ‚Äî Katie Barnes ‚Äî who has led the defense.
Barnes and Co. have allowed just three goals all season, a fact that Hajenius hangs his hat on.
“Katie has added a lot to the defense, we built it around her,” he said.
Despite all the success this season, CIF-Southern Section pollsters haven‚Äôt noticed the turnaround at Pacifica Christian. The Seawolves are currently unranked in Division 7, yet should receive a first round home playoff game for their efforts if they clinch the Liberty League title.
Santa Monica-based teams St. Monica and Crossroads are currently ranked in the division. Hajenius said that being even smaller than those relatively low enrollment schools and in the same city could be leading to the snub, but he can only worry about finishing this season kicking.
“I‚Äôm excited to see how it works out,” he said.
The game against Yeshiva is Thursday at Marine Park. It begins at 3 p.m.