Devin, Mecham given POY honors

As voted for by the coaches, this year’s list of Kauai Interscholastic Federation boys and girls soccer all stars has been finalized.

Among this year’s 24 high school standouts, two stood out most — both of whom represent this year’s KIF champions.

Among the girls, Kapaa junior midfielder Natalie Devin was named the Player of the Year.

“It’s pretty exciting,” Devin said. “I think I worked hard. I think lots of people deserved it. A lot of people on our team deserved it.”

Kapaa girls head coach Mytra McKeague said of Devin, “I think her personality is great. She’s passionate about soccer and will go far in life.”

Kapaa, this year’s girls KIF winner, has seven spots in the girls list. Kauai High has five, and both Island School and Waimea each have one.

“They’re all had workers. They’re all great players,” McKeague said of her stars.

McKeague was named the girls Coach of the Year.

“That wasn’t because of me. This was because of the great bunch of girls we had,” she said. “Great bunch of girls that come from great parents. It’s the players that make you. It’s not anything we can do, or I can do as a coach. It’s because of the players.

Of the boys, Waimea junior midfielder Carl Mecham was chosen as the Player of the Year.

“It’s unexpected, really,” Mecham said about the award. “I’m glad it happened, and I’m glad I’m able to represent Kauai and Waimea.”

Waimea boys head coach Kapono Chong-Hanssen said about Mecham, “He can strike the ball really well. He just has a really good shot. It pays off for him on free kicks, penalty kicks, in a lot of situations. That’s the first thing. He can basically stroke the ball. That’s something you can work on to get better at, but to a certain degree, you either have it or you don’t. I think he probably had it when he was young.”

Waimea, the KIF boys winner, holds eight all star spots. Kapaa has three, Island School has two and Kauai High has one.

Chong-Hanssen said to have all those all stars from his team, it’s especially gratifying to have his four defenders on the list together.

“I essentially nominated my entire defense to start off, because I think that’s really why we won the KIF,” he said. “For such a long part of the season, we never got scored on. So, the seniors in particular I wanted them to get some recognition. It’s definitely nice to have the whole back four on there together.”

Chong-Hanssen was also named the boys Coach of the Year.

“It’s cool; I appreciate getting some recognition. I appreciate the coaches have some respect for what I’ve done with these guys,” the Menehune coach said of the accolade. “It was challenging, for sure.”

Girls

Forward: April Barnes, Kapaa, sophomore

Forward: Brianna Binder, Kapaa, sophomore

Midfielder: Natalie Devin, Kapaa, junior

Midfielder: Vanessa Hernandez, Kapaa, junior

Midfielder: Aleigha Scovel, Kauai, senior

Midfielder: Julia Hirano, Waimea, senior

Defense: Kawehi Taniguchi, Kauai, senior

Defense: Caley Caires, Kauai, senior

Defense: Chase Tokita, Kauai, junior

Defense: Kaylee Overmyer. Kapaa, sophomore

Goalkeeper: Kalia Shimabukuro, Kauai, junior

Utility: Brianna Griep, Island School, senior

Player of the Year: Natalie Devin, Kapaa, junior

Coach of the Year: Mytra McKeague, Kapaa

Boys

Forward: Brandon Beydoun, Island School, sophomore

Midfielder: Justin Franklin, Kapaa, senior

Midfielder: Carl Mecham, Waimea, junior

Midfielder: Eljay Camat, Kapaa, senior

Midfielder: Marcus Perreira, Waimea, senior

Midfielder: Rhylen Yadao-Purisima, Kauai, junior

Defense: Chris Ishikawa, Waimea, junior

Defense: Devon Hartsell, Waimea, senior

Defense: Riley Saiki, Waimea, senior

Defense: Matthew Schmidt, Kapaa, senior

Goalkeeper: Andres Elzaurdia, Island School, junior

Utility: Cody Taniguchi, Waimea, junior

Player of the Year: Carl Mecham, Waimea, junior

Coach of the Year: Kapono Chong-Hanssen, Waimea

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