PALM COAST — Gabbi Paiz ended her high school soccer career a few months early, after she suffered a major knee injury. She’ll still finish her four years as Matanzas’ all-time leading goal scorer.
Paiz signed her National Letter of Intent Feb. 13 to play soccer at Flagler College, in St. Augustine.
In seven games as a senior, Paiz tallied 17 goals and 10 assists, which was still good enough to be among the leading scorers in Flagler and Volusia counties. She ended her career with 104 goals and 75 assists.
Matanzas coach Tony Benvenuto said he expects Paiz to be successful both on the field and off in the future.
“She has two loving parents who support her in every way,” Benvenuto said. “Their work ethic has rubbed off on Gabbi. Her dad, Jose, is an immigrant just like I am, and we both know that in this great country, hard work pays off.”
Benvenuto said Gabbi and her teammates the past four years have put Matanzas soccer “on the map.”
That includes a district championship, a regional championship and a Final Four appearance this season — capping the best season in school history.
“They should be very proud of that accomplishment,” Benvenuto said.
Flagler College is an NCAA Division II member. The Saints compete in the Peach Belt Conference.
Polinice seals deal with FAMU
Matanzas offensive lineman Loubens Polinice made his commitment to Florida A&M University official when he signed his letter of intent on Feb. 13.
FAMU is an NCAA Division I-AA member and competes in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference.