Gallegos returns for her 10th season
San Diego Surge quarterback Melissa Gallegos takes a snap during an undated Women¿s Football Association game. (Courtesy of Cali Camera / April 7, 2012)
In 2007, Brady directed the Patriots to a perfect 16-0 record, extending the streak to 18 straight before falling in Super Bowl XLII to the New York Giants.
Likewise, a local ballclub posted a perfect record before falling in the national championship last season. That ballclub is the San Diego Surge, members of the 62-team Women’s Football Association.
The long-time quarterback for the Surge is Melissa Gallegos, who begins her 10th season with the Surge, a team known by several names over the years including Sunfire and Scorpions.
“I feel very old for this sport — I sometimes feel like Brett Favre,” joked Gallegos, 32. “But we’ve got a lot of key players and a lot of experience, so we shouldn’t have any problem to play for another championship.”
Gallegos hails from El Centro, where a men’s semi-pro football team is one of the nation’s best.
“And their coach used to be my basketball coach in high school,” noted Gallegos, who last played for Southwest High in 1998.
In 2010, Gallegos was selected to represent Team USA at a world women’s (American style) football event in Sweden, directing the Americans to the gold medal following a victory over Canada. Then last year, she led the Surge to an 11-0 mark and the American Conference crown after defeating the previously undefeated Dallas Diamonds, 48-20.
Her favorite target is tight end Carmen Cruz, who is also starting her 10th season.
However, like Brady, the Surge fell short in the title game to the Boston Militia.
“Our goal is to get back to the title game, but win it this time,” added Gallegos.
Last month, the Surge conducted a 2-day mini-camp in her hometown of El Centro in preparation for the season. Practices are conducted twice weekly at Hourglass Field in Mira Mesa.
“Our team is loaded with experienced players, but we also have some newer players coming in, which makes us one of the best teams around,” noted Christina Carrillo, who just retired as a player and now serves the dual role of owner and coach. “It’s really good football with a lot of people who really dedicated themselves.”
The Surge is making a move, playing their home games at Santee Community Stadium on the campus of Santana High School. The season opener will be at home against the Silver State Legacy of Las Vegas on Apr. 21. Kickoff is at 5:30 p.m.
Remaining Surge home games include: the Bay Area Bandits on May 19, the Arizona Assassins on June 9 and the Pacific Warriors on June 16. Playoff dates will follow.
Further information is available on the team Web site: www.sandiegosurge.com
Nick Pellegrino is a writer for EastCountySports.com