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Former Falcons, Golden Knights notch conference honors

The following are updates on area athletes at the collegiate level.

Apolonia Martinez (Crescenta Valley High, 2010) Linfield women's soccer, sophomore: Nerves weren't a factor for Martinez in her sophomore season, her first as a starter for Linfield.

The former Falcon set the Wildcats' individual single-season record for goals-against average at 0.52, which was good for second in the conference this year. She also posted eight shutouts, which tied Linfield's individual record.

Martinez earned second-team All-Northwest Conference honors on Nov. 9 after starting all 15 games, making 33 saves, allowing eight goals and finishing with an 11-2-1 record.

"She made big saves when she had to," Linfield Coach Dominic Doty told the school's website. "A lot of games she didn't have to do a lot, but there's something to be said about a goalkeeper who doesn't have to do a lot in games and then steps up in the one or two times they're called on."

Linfield recorded several other firsts for the program by achieving its highest-ever finish in the Northwest Conference, coming in second place with a 14-2-3 overall and 11-2-3 league mark. The Wildcats also set single-season program records for wins and shutouts (10).

The Wildcats came close to their first-ever conference championship, but couldn't pull it out. Linfield needed a victory over Pacific on Nov. 4 to secure a conference crown, but battled to a 0-0 double-overtime draw. The result dropped Linfield out of a first-place tie with Puget Sound, which went on to secure the Northwest Conference title.

Rian Younker (St. Francis High, 2009) Cal Lutheran football, junior: Younker, picked up first-team defense All-Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference honors this year, after leading the conference in sacks and tackles for a loss. He was one of four former Golden Knights to notch All-SCIAC honors.

Younker was a force on the defensive line for Cal Lutheran, helping the Kingsmen (8-2, 6-0 in conference) earn an NCAA Division III playoff berth. He finished his season with 40 tackles (21 solo, 19 assisted) and set team-highs in tackles for a loss (12.5) and sacks (eight).

Luke Collis, Occidental College's quarterback and a former St. Francis standout, was a first-team pick on offense after leading the conference in touchdown passes with 28. Collis completed 247 of 405 pass attempts for 2,741 yards and 11 interceptions in his senior season. The Tigers finished the year with a 5-4 record and went 3-3 in conference.

John Schachtner, a former Glendale Community College and St. Francis player, was a first-team selection on the offensive line for Cal Lutheran.

Chris Cabrera, a sophomore linebacker for Cal Lutheran, was a second-team selection. He recorded 37 tackles (21 solo, 16 assisted), seven tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks. The former Golden Knight also broke up a pass and logged two quarterback hurries.

Veronica Aguilar (Crescenta Valley High, 2009) South Carolina State women's soccer, junior: Aguilar had a knack for the finding the net at the right time for the Bulldogs. The former Falcon emerged as a leader in the Bulldogs' midfield and earned Great West Conference second-team honors when they were released Nov. 4.

Aguilar finished the regular season with two goals and five assists for seven points, the second most for the Bulldogs, after playing all 19 games (starting in 16) this year.

South Carolina State finished the season with a 6-10-3 record (3-2-1 in conference) and earned the third seed for the Great West Tournament. Aguilar was heroic in the opener against Delaware State on Nov. 4, leading the Bulldogs to victory by scoring the game's only goal off a corner kick in the eighth minute.

The score stood up for a 1-0 victory and put South Carolina State in the semifinals, where the Bulldogs' season ended at the hands of Houston Baptist, 1-0, on Nov. 5.

Aguilar also scored the difference maker in South Carolina State's final home game this season against Francis Marion on Oct. 20. With the contest tied at 2 late, Aguilar earned a penalty kick at the 85:59 mark and buried it for a 3-2 Bulldogs victory.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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