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Sierra coach hits milestone with drubbing of Holt Academy
GSOC--Holt Academy-Sierra pic 1
Sierra High Principal Steve Clark presents girls soccer coach Manuel Pires with a special plaque commemorating his 400th career win. Pires Timberwolves blew out Holt Academy 9-0 in their season opener at Daniel Teicheira Memorial Stadium. - photo by Photo by WAYNE THALLANDER

Thursday night was a stop on an incredible journey that shows no signs of coming to an end any time soon.

With Sierra’s 9-0 non-league thumping of visiting Ben Holt Academy of Stockton at Daniel Teicheira Memorial Stadium, Manuel Pires pocketed his 400th win as the only head coach the Timberwolves girls soccer program has ever known. 

“It doesn’t seem like it has been that many games,” Pires said. “But it has been 22 years and a great ride. I enjoy being a part of this school and what I have accomplished with the kids I have coached over the years. It’s been great.

“I enjoy it – a win is a win and the numbers just build up – but it has been a long journey. I want to thank all the coaches who have worked with me over the years and the school athletic directors that have done a great job supporting the program. It has been a great team effort.”

Pires has had his share of accomplished players over the years and Thursday’s edition was Jadyn Shinn. The sophomore tallied a hat trick – two on assists from fellow sophomore Yasmin Ballew and one off of a steal – and dished up two assists to Minty Doyle. 

“I make the runs and my teammates give me the perfect balls,” Shinn said. “Then I can take the goalie on one-on-one and finish it easily. I am happy that my teammates are able to find me with the perfect angle and the perfect speed of the pass.”

The two assists to Doyle were arcing crosses that Doyle headed in.

“Jadyn (Shinn) and I just work really well together,” Doyle said. “She puts in perfect crosses so it is a piece of cake for me to get them right in the corner.”

Shinn has confidence in Doyle.

“I just always know she is there,” Shinn said of Doyle. “And I know she’s going to jump up for that ball.

“I know what spot to hit for her and I try to lob it to her.”

After being shut down for most of the first half, Ballew finally found the net in the 38th minute on a rebound.

“I was really struggling in the beginning,” Ballew said. “I took two or three shots that didn’t fall.

“I kept going after it and I had my teammates to support me and I put one in the back of the net and it felt good.”

It took Sierra (1-0) just two minutes to score when Ballew got the ball to Shinn and she worked her way through three defenders for a 1-0 lead. 

Kyndra Kiser, Jennifer Rivera and Daisy Valencia each added a goal for Timberwolves with Emily Berg and Doyle both getting an assist.

With the Sierra defense being as stingy as its offense was explosive, the Bobcats (0-1) managed just four shots and only two of those were on goal.