Empire: Varnadore earns regional soccer award

By TED SILLANPAA
THE PRESS DEMOCRAT

Former Analy High soccer star Taylor Varnadore has been named West Region Player of the Year for his outstanding senior season for Sonoma State.

The senior forward , a native of Sebastopol, also earned first team All-West Region honors and is eligible to be considered for All-America status. The NCAA Division II Men’s Soccer All-America Team will be announced on Dec. 4.

A four-time All-California Collegiate Athletic Association star, Varnadore was named the conference’s Most Valuable Offensive Player this season, accounting for nearly half of Sonoma State’s offense. He netted 11 of the 25 goals scored by the Seawolves.

This is the third straight All-West Region honor for the senior.

Curtin sisters, Fryer are regional soccer selections

Three Sonoma State stars have been chosen for the NCAA Division II Women’s Soccer All-West Region Team. Lauren Curtin and Lauren Fryer are first team all-Region and are eligible for All-America consideration. Cara Curtin earned second team All-West Region.

Lauren Curtin, a Maria Carrillo High grad, was the California Collegiate Athletic Association Women’s Soccer Newcomer of the Year and first team all-conference. Her twin sister Cara, also a Carrillo alumni, earns All-Region honors for a second straight year. Fryer concludes her collegiate career with her first All-Region selection.

Region Player of the Year honors went to Cal State Stanislaus senior forward Karenee Demery, whose 52 points led the nation.

’Wolves set to open NCAA volleyball tournament

The Sonoma State volleyball team has qualified for the NCAA Division II Championships for the sixth consecutive season.

The Seawolves will open West Regional play Dec. 5-7 at Cal State San Bernardino. Fourth-seeded SSU will face No. 5 seed Western Washington to open the tournament.

The Seawolves (25-5) and Vikings (23-3) opened last year’s NCAA tournament against each other, but WWU knocked SSU out of the single-elimination tournament.

Top-seed San Bernardino (25-5) will serve as the regional host for the seventh time in the last eight years. The eight-time CCAA champion Coyotes have won 22 of their last 23 matches with the only loss during that span coming at home against Sonoma State. They open against No. 8 seed Central Washington (15-11). The winner of Sonoma’s opener will take on the winner of San Bernardino’s first match on Dec. 6.

While Sonoma State has sported a 133-45 (.747) record the last six years, it is just 2-5 in NCAA tournament games during that span.

The NCAA west region champion will advance to the Elite Eight, held Dec. 12-14 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

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