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Academica women’s squad wraps up second USL W League season
Academica women
The starting 11 of the Academica Women’s Soccer Club took the pitch for the final time in 2024 on Saturday, playing to a 5-0 loss to the California Storm (Photo courtesy of Academica WSC).

The third season of Academica Soccer Club’s women’s program — and its second competing in the USL W League — came to a close on Saturday at their home pitch in Turlock with a 5-0 loss to the California Storm (Sacramento). Under first-year head coach Trisha Gonzales, they finished the 2024 season with a 3-9-0 record, good enough for just sixth-place in the eight-team NorCal division.

The record is a slight improvement from where they finished a year ago, when they achieved a 2-9-1 record in their first season in the USL W. Their three wins this season were a 4-1 win over the Pleasanton Rage on May 25, a 7-1 dismantling of the Marin FC Sirens on June 2 and a 5-3 shootout against the Olympic Club (San Francisco) on June 18.

Academica scored the fifth-most goals in the division with 23 by nine different players. Responsible for six of those scores was forward Kassandra Ceja, who has played collegiately at Fresno State and Long Beach State. She had a pair of multi-score games this year. 

Nevertheless, 44 goals allowed made it difficult to get the desired results and pick up points in the standings. Instead, they finished with just nine. 

Of those 23 scores, 14 came at their home field, which means a total of $1,050 was raised for Jessica’s House in Turlock, a nonprofit providing grief support to local children and families. At the start of the season, the soccer club announced that $75 would be donated to Jessica’s House for each home goal scored by their men’s and women’s squads.

As for the men’s team, their season won’t wrap up until later this month. They currently sit in last place in the NorCal division with a 2-6-3 record with three matches left on the schedule. 

Like the women’s team, they have a negative goal differential, scoring 16 while allowing 19. Leading the charge for Academica offensively has been Central Valley High and UC Davis alumnus Andres Velasquez, who has scored a team-high five goals in eight games.

So far this season, they have scored eight goals at home, racking up another $600 for Jessica’s House.

The men will look to finish the season strong the next two weeks. Next up on the schedule is a home match on July 6 against Almaden FC. On July 10, they will travel to Treasure Island to take on the San Francisco Glens. The 2024 season wraps up on July 13 when they travel north to take on Davis Legacy.