Golden Valley hires new girls soccer coach

Dan Watson/The Signal

Compiling an overall record of 7-28-5 over the past two years, Golden Valley’s girls soccer has decided to move in a different direction with the hire of new head coach Michela James.

“Golden Valley is pleased to announce that Michela James has accepted the position as the Girls Head Varsity Soccer Coach. Coach Michela replaces John Bogdan who led the Lady Grizzlies for the last two years,” said Golden Valley via press release.

James, who currently teaches Physical Education at La Mesa Jr. High School, will be taking over for John Bogdan as the new varsity girls head coach in hopes of turning around a Grizzlies’ program that has gone winless in Foothill League play over the last two years.

“We decided to open up the search because we were looking for a coach who was going to, basically, develop players from the freshman level all the way to the varsity level,” said Golden Valley co-Athletic Director Carmelo Flores. “We want a coach who wants to spend the time to nurture and develop all the levels of our program.”

Being introduced to the team on the same day, James officially took over the reigns of the Golden Valley program on June 21st.

A Golden Valley alum, James played soccer for the Grizzlies all four years of her high school career before graduating after the 2012-2013 season.

James, who was unavailable for an interview, went on to play as a defender for the Doane University Tigers in Crete, Nebraska from 2013-2017.

Because of James’ prior knowledge and familiarity with the Santa Clarita Valley and the players, Flores is confident that James will be instrumental in galvanizing a change in a positive direction.

“It’s going to help because she knows the competitiveness of the (Foothill) league,” Flores said. “Starting with the youth, to club and even in the high school level, she knows how hard she’s going to have to work to create a program that will be able to compete in our league.”

Holding interviews to narrow down the perfect candidate, a couple things stood out to Flores and the school board.

“We held interviews and at the end of the process, we were all in agreement,” Flores said. “One thing we liked was that she played in college and that she was a Golden Valley alumni, so she understands our culture and what we are about and the direction we want to go in. That definitely appealed to us.”

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