Rio Hondo earns seventh straight United Soccer Coaches Team Academic Award

(Courtesy Rio Hondo College Athletics)
(Courtesy Rio Hondo College Athletics)

WHITTIER - An impressive streak continues to grow for the Rio Hondo College women's soccer team. More important than wins on the field, head coach Jennifer Tanaka-Hoshijo and her squad also produce victories off the field and in the classroom. Earlier this month, Rio Hondo was awarded the program's seventh consecutive Academic Team Award from United Soccer Coaches.

Rio Hondo has earned the Team Academic Award every year since 2013 (2013-2019). The seven-year streak is currently the second longest in the nation (Butler Community College, 12 years).  No other California community college program has captured the award more than four years.

United Soccer Coaches, the largest soccer coaches association in the world, annually celebrates the academic achievements of high school and college soccer teams whose student-athletes collectively demonstrate a commitment to excellence in their studies over the course of a full academic year.

College Team Academic Award recipients are active members of the United Soccer Coaches College Services Program with a composite grade point average of 3.0 or better on a 4.0 scale for all players on the roster.

"Rio Hondo women's soccer is proud to receive a seventh straight National Academic Award," said Tanaka-Hoshijo. "The student-athletes work hard to earn these national academic accolades from the United Soccer Coaches and we are very proud of this accomplishment. With over 90 percent of student-athletes that have competed here and transferred to four-year schools and professional programs, we take enormous pride in being one of the top programs in the country in the classroom and on the field."

Six members of the 2018 women's soccer team transferred on to four-year programs: Karina Banda (Cal State Dominguez Hills), Natalie Magana (Cal State Fullerton), Flor Suarez (Briar Cliff University), Viviana Ramirez (Kansas Wesleyan University), Marissa Morales (Kansas Wesleyan University), and Izella Delgadillo (University of LaVerne).

The Roadrunners compiled a 12-4-5 overall record in 2018 and qualified for postseason play for the fifth consecutive season, reaching the second round of the Southern California Regional Playoffs.

This fall, Rio Hondo is off to another great start. The Roadrunners are currently ranked among the Top-15 in the United Soccer Coaches National Poll and are rated No. 7 in the state power points. The bring a 7-1-3 overall record into their South Coast Conference opener on Friday (Oct. 18) at 6 p.m. against Los Angeles Harbor College.

(Courtesy Rio Hondo College Athletics)