The Santa Barbara Soccer Club’s 2003 Elite Boys team capped a terrific season in the Cal South Premier League by winning the Southern California club soccer organization’s National Cup championship with a 1-0 victory over DTLA SC Black in Oceanside on Sunday.
The title qualifies the team for the United States Youth Soccer Far West Regionals in Boise, Idaho, June 21-27.
Jared Vom Steeg scored the game winner against DTLA SC. Goalkeepers Diego Garcia and Sam Friedman combined on the shutout.
“We are really excited that this win has come when it has. It’s such a wonderful outcome for this team,” said coach Rudy Ybarra. “The core of this group has been playing together since they were very young.”
Three years ago, the group missed advancing to the USYS National Championships in a penalty-kick shootout at the Far West Regionals in Hawaii.
“Going to compete for a national championship has been the No. 1 goal of this group from the beginning,” Ybarra said. “This year, not only do I feel we are capable of winning the regional championships, but I feel our team is capable of winning a national title.”
Santa Barbara got a 1-0 victory over FRAM to reach the National Cup final. Luke Goodman scored the winning goal, and Garcia earned the clean sheet.
In the quarterfinals, Santa Barbara defeated Total Futbol Academy, 3-1.
The club went undefeated in Cal South Premier League play and just missed winning its bracket at the prestigious Dallas Cup in April.
Ybarra acknowledged how the season has been especially challenging due to the pandemic. They went months without practicing and playing games.
“This team has been through a difficult time but they have stayed together as a unit,” he said. “Coach (Oscar) Hernandez and I are very proud of them. We have seen their diligence coming to practice day in and day out.”
Ybarra has been coaching with the SBSC for more than 20 years and has guided four teams to national titles.
“I want to thank Santa Barbara Soccer Club for all the support it has given us,” he said. “And, a special thank you to all the parents who have been here and supported this team for many years.”
One of those parents, Beth Goodman, is the team’s co-manager and the mother of team members Luke and Cason Goodman.
“I know these boys,” she said. “I know before they are done they want to add another star on the Santa Barbara Soccer Club jacket.”
The SBSC 2003 Elite team members are Daniel Boateng, Luke Goodman, Cason Goodman, Sam Friedman, Jared Vom Steeg, Caden Vom Steeg, Rene Pacheco, Erick Hernandez, Erik Guerrero, Carson Spahr, Christian Jimenez, JJ Wolf, Alex Lavariega, Jose Herrera, Jonah Dewhurst, Miguel Alvarado, Miguel Mondragon, Diego Garcia, Kevin Weslow, Jorge Silva, Ricardo Romero and Martin Anguiano.
The coaches are Rudy Ybarra and Oscar Hernandez.