Tucson High School graduate Juliana Valdez has immediately impacted the highly-successful Pima women’s soccer program with two goals, both of them game-winning scores, to lead the top-ranked Aztecs to a 3-0 record.
Her play to open the season merits her the Jet Sports Training Female Athlete of the Month for August.
In Pima’s latest victory on Aug, 30, a 1-0 win over visiting Cochise College, Valdez recovered a loose ball and scored after sophomore Caitlyn Maher’s shot hit the left goal-post in the 64th minute.
Valdez leads the Aztecs with four points heading into their ACCAC conference opener Saturday, when they host GateWay Community College at the West Campus Aztec Field at 8:00 p.m.
When Valdez signed with Pima at a ceremony at Tucson High in May, she commented about going to the Aztecs’ program: “I’m excited. I still have a lot to learn. I’m a new player. I didn’t start playing at a young age. I started late.”
Valdez was not elevated to the Badgers’ varsity level until he was a junior two years ago. A bright future is ahead for the Liberal Arts major who plans to teach children in foreign countries.
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ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for CollegeAD.com, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports, TucsonCitizen.com, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon. He became an educator five years ago and is presently a special education teacher at Gallego Fine Arts Intermediate in the Sunnyside Unified School District.