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Stiver steps up for Sea Kings

Daily Pilot High School Athlete of the Week

Oregon State-bound senior, a team captain, helped make sure CdM extended its reign atop the Pacific Coast League.

February 22, 2014|By Matt Szabo
  • Corona del Mar High's Miranda Stiver is the Daily Pilot High School Athlete of the Week.
Corona del Mar High's Miranda Stiver is the Daily… (Don Leach, Daily…)

Miranda Stiver was more than a little bit intimidated when she entered the Corona del Mar High girls' soccer program as a sophomore.

Stiver moved from Arcadia to Newport Beach in the fall of 2011 with her mother, step-dad and younger brother. The family wanted to be closer to the headquarters of PIMCO, the Newport Beach-based investment management firm for which Miranda's mother, Christina, works.

The commute for Christina was indeed severely reduced. Miranda did not have so much trouble fitting in at CdM in the classroom, but on the soccer field she had doubts.

At Arcadia High, she was the cream of the crop. But she entered a CdM program in 2011-12 that was perhaps the program's best in terms of overall talent. One website ranked CdM No. 2 in the state at one point, and the Sea Kings finished 22-3-2, collecting the top seed in the CIF Southern Section Division 1 playoffs before a disappointing quarterfinal loss to Santa Margarita.

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Stepping on the same pitch with players like then-senior captains Ally Brahs (now at Washington), goalkeeper Sarah Cox (Stanford), Amanda Stephenson (George Mason) and Sydney Raguse (Michigan) was a bit of an eye-opener for Stiver. She was just 15 years old at the time.

"It was so intimidating, oh my God," Miranda Stiver said. "At Arcadia, I was the best player as a freshman, then I came here. I think sophomore year, I was the only one on the field that wasn't committed [to play in college] at that point. I didn't even think I was going to make the team. But it ended up working out and being amazing ... They helped me a lot, just to see how the game can be played in a different way than I had seen ever before."

Stiver fit in with that year's team at right midfielder, helping CdM win its second straight outright Pacific Coast League title. Two years later, the Oregon State signee Stiver is a forward and senior captain who is helping to keep that legacy going. The Daily Pilot Athlete of the Week has helped the Sea Kings collect two more outright league crowns.

None has been as crazy as this year's. CdM improbably won two games last week to claim that title. The Sea Kings beat Beckman, 2-1, on Feb. 11 at Tustin High, surviving when a Patriots penalty kick went over the cage in the final seconds. Two days later, they mounted a crazy comeback, scoring three goals in the final 20 minutes to stun Northwood, 3-2, and claim that outright league crown. It was the Timberwolves' only league loss of the season.

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