Youth California Cup Recap: Castillero And California Earn Middle And High School Titles

Dec. 02, 2019, 9:33 a.m. (ET)

youth cup
The 2019 Youth California Cup saw six middle school teams and five high school teams compete in Fremont, California. 

November marked a successful edition of the Youth California Cup, hosted by the San Francisco CalHeat Team Handball Club.

It was also the largest edition of the tournament, which began in 2016. CalHeat hosted the event atCenterville Junior High School Gym in Fremont, California.

In the middle school competition, teams played in two groups of three, followed by semi-final and final rounds. The Castillero Cobras logged an undefeated record to earn first place. The Bret Harte Broncos and Sterne School Dolphins claimed second and third. 

On the high school side, teams competed in a round robin format, with California Handball (Leland High School) taking the crown. The Sterne School Dolphins placed second and San Francisco Team Handball Club placed third.

The tournament also organized an all-girls exhibition game. According to event organizer Martin Bilello, there was an all-girls handball demonstration at last year's Youth California Cup, but this year saw a much larger number of participants. 

"We tried to do a girls' league this season, but we didn't get enough girls to sign up, nor did we have enough coaches," Bilello said. "Next year, we will try again to have a girls' league. That's an area where we're really pushing for more coaches and participants."

Individuals interested in coaching boys or girls are welcome to contact Bilello at martin.bilello@gmail.com

Bilello also organized an inaugural All-Stars competition featuring the top athletes that participated in the tournament. The players that were selected to the tournament's All-Stars team included:

Middle School:

Goalkeeper: Milo Cardona (San Francisco Team Handball Club)
Left Wing: 
Tristan Bright (Castillero)
Left Back: Ayan Kohli (Sterne)
Center Back: Adam Larson (Castillero 2)
Right Back: Isaiah Bowie (CalHeat)
Right Wing: Milan Damjanac (Bret Harte)
Pivot: Gavin Hannigan (Bret Harte)


High School:

Goalkeeper: Jean-Max Fawzi (San Francisco Team Handball Club)
Left Wing: Balthazar Thevenet (San Francisco Team Handball Club)
Left Back: Ian Hodgson (Pioneer)
Center Back: Michael Dozier (Sterne)
Right Back: Jooyoung Kim (California/Leland High School)
Right Wing: Connor Elliot (California/Leland High School)
Pivot: Wills Towers (California/Leland High School)

A full list of results can be found here. Videos from the tournament can be found on the CalHeat Facebook page.