Yllescas returns to PV to coach boys soccer
Former Panthers coach will try to guide Piedra Vista to its first winning season since 2009
FARMINGTON — Carlos Yllescas will once again roam the sidelines as the head coach of the Piedra Vista boys soccer team this fall after being rehired by the school earlier this month.
Yllescas guided the Panthers from 2006-2011, and his coaching highlight came during the 2009 season when PV defeated St. Pius X in the state tournament. Pius came into the tournament riding a streak of six consecutive state championships.
The PV boys soccer program has failed to put together a winning season since 2009, which was under Yllescas' watch.
Since he stepped down at PV, three different coaches have come and gone over four seasons. Pat Denney, who led the school to a combined record of 12-28 in 2014 and 2015, resigned during the off-season.
Yllescas left Farmington four years ago to become an assistant coach for the San Antonio Scorpions, a professional soccer team out of Texas. He returned over a year ago to assist coaching the PV girls soccer squad with Adam Huff. Yllescas said the timing was right to resume his head coaching career upon learning of the boys' coaching vacancy.
"They gave me the opportunity to come to PV again, and I know the program and I'm familiar with the area," Yllescas said. "We did some combined practices with the boys and girls teams last year and I've been working with a lot of the boys players this summer, so I am very familiar with them."
Between Yllescas and the assistant coaches he has appointed — Shaun Taylor and Ray Santillanes — the PV staff has 61 years of coaching experience. From youth soccer to high school to the pros, Yllescas has just about seen it all in the soccer world, and that experience factor played into his rehiring, according to PV athletic director Frank Whalen.
"He has a wealth of knowledge when it comes to the game of soccer," Whalen said. "He just does a really good job of teaching the skills to his players."
Yllescas said he will be working with a huge roster of about 40 players this fall since he decided to bring a large number of eighth graders aboard. The coach held practices and scrimmages all summer long with players to work on their conditioning. He said about half of his roster came out to work with him this summer.
Yllescas vows to field one of the more competitive Panthers teams of the decade when the soccer season kicks off later this week.
"We will be a faster team and a more aggressive team. This summer has been a major thing for us," Yllescas said. "You will see a totally different team in the Aztec tournament. You'll be able to see the difference."
Jake Newby covers sports for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4577.