With the surge of Omicron, they were not sure if the tournament could be held
The Malibu’s American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO) AllStar Girls will compete in the Southern California soccer Championship in the U12 division.
“It’s been all soccer all the time these past few months but quite honestly, with this surge of Omicron and not knowing if we were going to even have a full team and if the tournament could be held. Just getting to play as a full team was success number one,” Coach Nichole McGinley said in an email to The Malibu Times. “These girls have come together and bonded during a very confusing time. I’m so glad they have had this common goal to work toward and for the camaraderie and bonds they’ve developed.”
McGinley has been coaching for seven years and has been an AYSO board member for three years. A welcomed touch of normalcy during these unpredictable times for kids.
“Anyone that has played in local AYSO knows what a huge accomplishment getting an invitation to Bakersfield,” McGinley said. “We are so pleased this group of 10, 11, and 12-year-olds will get to continue and thrive in all that makes team sports such an invaluable experience.”
McGinley said it was rewarding defeating other teams in their Area 10 (Thousand Oaks, Agoura/Westlake, Moorpark, and Simi Valley) and ending up in second place.
“This is an incredible group of hard-working, dedicated and fun-spirited Malibu kids,” McGinley said. “Believe it or not, I even had a referee come over to me after the game to tell me what a pleasure it was to referee when our team was on the field. He commented on their fun and enthusiastic spirit and how well they worked together on the field. As a coach, being pulled aside by a ref usually feels like you’re heading to the principal’s office, but I could tell by the look in his eye when he called me over he was “feeling” the culture of the Magical Ocean Cougar Chickens.”
AYSO Division Director Haylynn Conrad and Nicole Dominique have been board members for various years. AYSO is entirely volunteer-based and community-operated.
For more information on Malibu AYSO, visit Malibuayso.org.