After finishing his senior campaign atop the Foothill League in goals scored and guiding the Saugus boys soccer team to his first playoff game of his career, Dylan Sullivan has a lot more to be proud of after being named the 2019 All-SCV Boys Soccer Player of the Year.
Starting with two-goal performance in the Centurions’ first game of the season in a 3-1 win over Antelope Valley, Sullivan set the tone for a remarkable senior campaign.
Scoring 20 goals and assisting on 12 others, Sullivan had four multi-goal games with a four-goal outing against West Ranch.
“He just had a knack of putting himself in the right place at the right time to either get a goal or get an assist,” said Saugus head coach Seth Groller. “He read the game very well and I’m talking all different types of goals throughout the season. He got goals in all different ways off of corners, breakaways and hard shots from outside the 18-yard box.
“He is just one of those players that looks for the opportunities and then pounces on them. Part of that for him is about being a player that is going to work hard and go after it and make those chances out of nothing. He is definitely going to be a tough one to replace.”
A complete team player, Sullivan saved his best for league. Seven of his 12 assists came in four games of Foothill League play.
“It’s his drive,” Groller said. “He goes after everything on both sides of the ball. He’s not only a striker that only looks for goals, but also gets the balls back for us defensively. It’s his speed, when there is a through ball or opportunity from the ball getting behind the defense he has the speed to take advantage of that.
“I’m sure the thing that kind of sticks out is his goals, leading the Foothill League players in goal this season, but also his assists. He’s just a special player and more than anything else he’s always had that drive that he will not be stopped.”
Leading his team into the CIF-Southern Section Division 4 playoffs, a first for Sullivan, Saugus held its own, providing all the firepower Santa Fe could handle in regulation.
Leaving it all out on the field, Saugus fell 1-0 in overtime, but the experience is something that Sullivan and the Saugus team will cherish and use a building block.
“Most of the players on the team haven’t played a playoff game,” Sullivan said. “We have a lot of young players on the team which is really special for them and I’ve never played a playoff game either, so it was really cool. For us to make it there it was really nice, even if it was just the one game.”
The senior finishes his Saugus career with 28 total goals and 12 assists in 38 games played over the course of his two-year varsity career and will leave a long-lasting legacy that future Centurions will have to live up to.
Sullivan has been receiving interest from College of the Canyons and Antelope Valley Community College in the hopes of trying to play a couple of years and then transfer to a Division 1 program.
“That drive was not only in the game, but that also’s what he brought to practice every single day and that’s where he kind of set the tone,” Groller said. “With two freshmen on the team, they saw the work ethic and positivity that Dylan brought and that’s the new norm.
“He was all about working hard and getting after it because that’s the type of guy he is. I really feel that that set the stage for our season and also for the next few seasons to come. All those players are going to remember the most successful player on our team and what it took to get there.”
Tito Gonzalez, Canyon, Senior
Headlining a senior-laden Cowboys team, Gonzalez was a strong attacking threat in the midfield finishing his senior season with nine goals and seven assists in a strong senior campaign.
Donovan Hernandez, Canyon, Senior
The senior midfielder did it all for the Cowboys, scoring six goals and finding his teammates for six assists on the season. He scored a key goal in a 2-2 home tie against Valencia.
Jonathan Saavedra, Golden Valley, Senior
A veteran returner for the Grizzlies, Saavedra used his experience and toughness to help the Grizzlies to two Foothill League wins snapping a Foothill League losing streak that dated back two years. He assisted on five goals and scored two of his own in league play, scoring one in his final game donning a Golden Valley uniform in a 5-1 win over West Ranch on Senior Night.
Darwin Herrera, Hart, Senior
A veteran, Herrera was a constant impact on the pitch providing instant offense whether it be assisting his teammates or finishing it himself. A notable assist came against Valencia in a 2-2 tie where he found teammate Nick Woll to keep the undefeated streak alive and the hopes of a second-straight Foothill League title intact.
Timothy Kim, Hart, Senior
The co-Foothill League Player of the Year was part a stout defensive backline that allowed just nine goals in league play and went undefeated for the second straight season winning a share of the Foothill League title. Kim was a marksman throughout the season scoring all three of his goals on set pieces for the Indians. The most significant came in the final regular season game on a 30-yarder to clinch a share of the league title in a 1-0 win against Saugus.
Joseph Ochoa, Hart, Junior
Ochoa was a persistent threat anytime he was on the pitch for the Indians building up the attack with his quick feet and knack for scoring the ball. An aggressive attacker, Ochoa had a couple of multi-goal games, scoring two in a 2-1 comeback win against Saugus and a hat trick in a 3-0 shutout victory in the second-to-last Foothill League game against West Ranch.
Colton Dolder, Saugus, Senior
One of two Centurions to make the All-SCA Second Team, Dolder was a notable figure on the Saugus’ backline, injecting himself into the attack to finish with 10 total points on three goals and four assists. He ranked third on the team in assists and in points. The senior defender finished the season with three multi-point games.
Frank Ornelas, Saugus, Senior
A key cog for the Centurions, Ornelas logged the most minutes (1,473) out of any Saugus player. He accounted for 12 total goals, scoring four and assisted on eight, for 16 points on the year. The senior had one multi-goal game, scoring two in a 3-0 victory against Golden Valley. The only Saugus player to make the All-SCA First Team, Ornelas ranked second on the team behind Sullivan in assists and points, and tied with two others in goals scored.
Alexei De Vita, Valencia, Junior
Proving his worth throughout the year, Vikings defender De Vita never backed down from a 50/50 ball, winning the majority of them for Valencia. His tenacity and defensive mindset helped form a strong backline en route to an 11-win season and share of the Foothill League title.
Philip Stulman, Valencia, Senior
A senior goalkeeper, Stulman was a brick wall in between the posts for the Vikings finishing the season with 10 scoreless games translating into eight shutout victories. Overall, the Vikings allowed 16 goals on the season and the least amount of goals in Foothill League play with six.
Ian Young, Valencia, Senior
Finishing with a share of the co-Foothill League Player of the year, Vikings’ Young recorded nine goals and five assists in an explosive season for the Vikings where they racked up a total of 34 goals on the year. He also scored the game-winner in a 2-1 comeback victory against West Ranch to keep the undefeated season intact.
Harrison Davis, Canyon, Senior
A true attacker, Davis used his length and size to create numerous scoring opportunities. His scoring prowess netted him three goals and five assists on the year
Drew Leskin, Canyon, Senior
A speedster, Leskin had the ability to maneuver his way around opposing defenses and defenders alike using his speed, elusiveness and nifty ball skills. Leskin finished his senior year with five goals and five assists.
Edward Quijano, Canyon, Junior
Playing both defender and midfield for the Cowboys, Quijano had the ability to challenge opposing players, win the ball and put a shot on net in any instance. He ended his junior season with three goals and three assists.
Robert Castro, Golden Valley, Senior
In his final season as a Grizzlies, Castro dazzled throughout the year, saving his best for Foothill League play. His creativity and resourcefulness with or without the ball at his feet made him a constant headache for defenders.
Justin Burrow, Hart, Senior
A pesky defender, Burrow provided a strong presence for the Hart defense that allowed just nine goals in 10 Foothill League games.
Gerardo Robledo, Hart, Senior
An offensive-minded defender, Robledo often made runs and controlled the ball into the final third of the pitch. He scored a go-ahead goal against West Ranch in a 2-1 home Foothill League victory.
Connor Claborn, Saugus, Freshman
A newcomer to the Saugus midfield, Claborn made an instant impact in his first year playing at the varsity level, ranking sixth on the team in minutes played with 1,122. He was one of two freshmen to on the All-SCA team, making Second Team. He netted three goals and assisted on one other.
Eric Johnson, Saugus, Senior
A lengthy defender, Johnson played an integral part in the backline clearing and winning almost every ball, showcasing strong ball skills throughout the year. Not afraid to push up every once in a while, Johnson scored two goals on four shots on goal and was the second Saugus defender to make the All-SCA Second Team along with Dolder.
Luke Fowble, Valencia, Senior
A dual-sport athlete in soccer and football, the senior forward was a pest up top for opposing defenders causing havoc and creating numerous scoring opportunities on the year.
Adan Saldana, Valencia, Senior
A key piece to the Valencia midfield, Saldana often was the creator in the Vikings attack, connecting the backline with the forwards setting the pace and transition throughout the year.
Nico Montebon, West Ranch, Senior
The senior Wildcat always put forth his best effort, never backing down from a loose ball or challenge and finishes his career his head held high.
Canyon — Chase Moynihan, Senior
Golden Valley — Brian Romo, Junior
Hart — Kevin Perez, Senior
Saugus — Alec Fryer, Freshman
SCCS — TJ Evans, Junior
SCVi — Adin Kuric, Sophomore
Trinity— Nolan Kulp, Senior
Valencia — Evan Ross, SeniorWest Ranch — Jacob Gendein, Senior