However, the Cougar junior’s recognition went much farther than the north Sparks school this fall.
When all the votes were tabulated, High Desert League coaches named Somera the Midfielder of the Year after he scored 18 goals on the season.
“He deserved it though,” SSHS boys soccer coach Rob Moreland said. “He’s just solid both ways, defensively and offensively. He’s got good vision and good touch. You want your midfielders to be able to change the point of attack. He’s just an all-around good player.”
Plenty of Cougars received recognition for their efforts on leading their team to a second-place finish in the High Desert League and their first Northern 3A Region title.
On the first team, senior midfielder Matt Munley and sophomore forward Julio Soto found their names. Munley was a defensive force in the middle, while Soto tallied eight goals.
Two Spanish Springs seniors were named to the second team. In his only year with the Purple and White, goalkeeper Ivan Trujillo made the second team along with defender Victor Diaz.
Rounding out the Cougars’ all-leaguers were freshman forward Jonathan Garcia-Cruz and junior midfielder Alex Matute on the honorable mention list.
Reed finished in last place in the HDL standings, but still had one player almost earn one of the top honors.
Junior forward Dylan Valentine was one vote away from being named the Offensive Player of the Year after leading the team with 21 goals. Instead, he had to settle for receiving first team honors.
“We never had anybody else playing up top with Dylan so he struggled being double teamed all the time,” Reed coach Jeff Valentine said. “It wasn’t until the last four games of the season that we figured out the best way to utilize the kids we had.”
The Raiders had one player on the second team, senior midfielder Rawlin McCubbins.
Valentine thought Todd Good should have been recognized by coaches as well.
“Rawlin actually played very well this year for a senior and contributed large amounts for us with such a young team,” Valentine said. “Todd Good, our center midfielder, actually played tremendously all year. He was a great leader out on the field.”
•In the 3A, there was no surprise that Sparks was well represented when the all-Northern 3A and all-state awards were announced.
Forward Marco Pintor (19 goals, 12 assists), midfielder Kevin Partida (8 goals, 12 assists), defender Noe Espana and goalkeeper Javier Torres all made the first team all-region and all-state teams.
Eric Ojeda was a second team all-region midfielder, while midfielder Edgar Casillas and defender Hector Hernandez were honorable mentions. Casillas had a strong enough state tournament where he was selected to the first team all-state list.
The Railroaders’ coaching staff earned Coach of the Year honors.
“Joel Martinez is our tactical wizard here at Sparks High,” Sparks boys soccer coach Frank Avilla said. “There’s no question of his role at Sparks High. The kids love him. He’s my co-head coach, and we just have a very good system at Sparks High.”