Junior Izzy Shallou-Enes of Pitman High is the 2017-18 Turlock Journal Player of the Year and she earned every bit of it.
Since stepping on to the pitch her freshman year at the varsity level, Shallou-Enes has proved time and time again that she is without question one of the best players in the area.
Her ability to create chances on the open field with tremendous touch and ability, depending on the flow of the game, has been far superior and this past season showcased it.
“It was well earned. She is a great player that is determined and self-driven, always giving it 100 percent,” said Pitman head coach Annabel Perez. “Izzy works well with her teammates and is unselfish, which has made her successful.”
“It feels great. It’s super encouraging and pushes me harder to continue to be my best. It makes me happy to know that all my hard work pays off,” said Shallou-Enes. “I had a successful season because my teammates were there to make plays or be at the right spot, so we could put the ball in the back of the net.”
In 22 games, Shallou-Enes tallied 25 goals, averaging over a goal per game and she topped it off with six assists.
“I am honored to be recognized for my hard work and dedication,” said Shallou-Enes. “I will continue to strive to make myself a better player and will hope to compete at the next level. I would really love to thank Pitman coaches, past and present, as well as my competitive coach, who has helped me develop new skills and see another side of the game.”
Shallou-Enes also led the Central California Conference in scoring with 13 goals and added four assists.
This earned her the CCC Offensive Player of the Year honors in her final CCC season.
The Pride also captured their first playoff win in over half a decade, amounting a 7-2-3 CCC record.
“We as a team all had the same goal. In order to even have a chance at the CCC title or at playoff games, we needed to work as a team and push each other,” said Shallou-Enes. “Our coaches were a huge part due to their encouragement and training.”
In Perez’s first season as head coach, she and her Pride squad saw early success after they went on to lose just a single game in their first 19 contests during the regular season.
They finished in third place in the CCC and earned a berth in the Division-II Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs where they beat St. Mary’s, 2-1, in the first round. They then followed the win with a loss to No. 2 Armijo in a 2-1 overtime game.
The Pride also ended a drought after beating St. Mary’s in the opening round, winning their first playoff game since May 8, 2012 when they defeated Franklin of Stockton, 3-1, in the Division-I Sac-Joaquin Section bracket.
“Playing soccer is my life, when I am able to compete and work with my team, I am at my best,” said Shallou-Enes. “While on the field I can see the play develop and execute the play and create opportunities.”
Every year since her freshman year Shallou-Enes has been recognized by the CCC.
She earned first-team all-league honors as a freshman, then was selected to the second team last season before earning first team again this year along with the best offensive player.
“This year was a good year for me and I just hope next year, my last year, is just as successful,” Shallou-Enes added. “I have been playing soccer since I was five years old and have had a lot of coaches; I would love to thank them all for their time and encouragement. My parents are a huge part of this all and I am very blessed that they had put me in soccer and have sacrificed so much for my soccer career.”
“She has a positive attitude and is very passionate about the game,” Perez added. “I know she wants to continue to play at the collegiate level and I believe she will have no problem getting there. She has a great future ahead of her.”
All-Area/All-Journal Girls Soccer Team
Player of the Year
Izzy Shallou-Enes (Pitman)
Emily Vieira, Hilmar
Jazmyn Garcia, Pitman
Daisy Martinez, Turlock
JuliAnn Machado, Hilmar
Hailie Virden, Turlock
Alexia Caballero, Pitman
Emily Salazar, Delhi
Kayli Wilson, Turlock
Kaylee de la Motte, Turlock Christian
Alisha Garcia, Pitman
Mikayla Schmidt, Hilmar
Giselle Barajas, Pitman
Kishauna Mavis, Turlock
Betzy Chavez, Hilmar
Jolee Sylvester, Pitman
Ainsley Wood, Hilmar
Litzy De La Cruz, Denair
Jennifer Chavez, Pitman
Stephanie Zamora, Turlock
Lexie Avalos, Hilmar
Genesis Maciel, Turlock
Alexa Teixeira, Pitman