Cindy Vargas (née Sims) took over as the Marauders’ Head Coach in 2006 after spending three years as AVC’s co-head coach. She also became a full-time kinesiology instructor at AVC.
In 2007, the Marauders returned to state, finishing fifth and boasted Ashley Arnett, who set a state record for strikeouts with 438.
In her first year flying solo, Vargas coached her team to a school record 47-7 season, including a perfect 21-0 Foothill Conference season and a third-place finish in state. The season included 28 records or firsts, with eight team records being broken including wins, runs, hits, singles, doubles, homers and RBI. AVC made a sweep of the Foothill Conference Awards and placed a record four players on the All-State team. Those same four were named AVC’s first-ever All-Americans. AVC earned a State Pitcher of the Year -- Gracie Perez, and Vargas was named State Coach of the Year.
She is one of the extremely few -- if, indeed there are any others -- to win back-to-back Conference Player of the Year and Coach of the Year honors from the same conference, and then to be named State Shortstop of the Year and then State Coach of the Year. She returned to the Marauders in 2003 as a co-head Coach of Fastpitch along with former Marauder pitching great Becky MacQuarrie. Her third year was a charm, as she guided the Marauders to their ninth Foothill Conference title, the fourth undefeated, and was named Foothill Conference Coach of the Year.
She guided the Marauders in that first 2003 season to a second-place finish in conference as well as a playoff berth. For her 2003 team’s achievements, she was named the recipient of the PAGS Award by the conference coaches. The award is in honor of former Marauder Head Coach Gene Pagliaro, who was six times named Foothill Conference Coach of the Year. The award is given to the Coach “Who did the most with the least -- and did it the most creatively.”
In the 2011 season, Vargas’ team set the school record for home runs with 70.
And while Vargas may have been the best Marauder hitter ever, in 2010 and 2011 she coached the person who may well be argued as better - Adriana Perez, who finally erased all of Vargas’ records.
Vargas batted .450 in the 1995 and 1996 seasons. She also hit 29 doubles, 19 of those in 1996, both Marauder records. Arguably the best defensive shortstop in Marauder history, she ended her Marauder career with a .938 fielding average. She was named Foothill Conference Player of the Year both seasons, the only Marauder to be so named twice. She was All-Southern California in 1995 and All-State in 1996.
She was inducted into the AVC Whit Carder Marauder Athletics Hall of Fame as a player in 2009.
She was also named Antelope Valley College Scholar-Athlete of the Year for the 1995-96 season and was the recipient of the state-wide Pepsi Scholar-Athlete Award.
The valedictorian at Quartz Hill High School, Vargas was named All-Golden League in softball all four years.
Since the Rebel teams she played on won all four Golden League championships, and both AVC teams she played for won Foothill Conference championships, Vargas played on six straight championship teams. She was named All-CIF three of her seasons at QHHS.
After AVC, Vargas played a year for Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, helping the Mustangs to a top 10 ranking and a win over UCLA. Knee injuries ended her career after that season.
She then transferred to Cal State Bakersfield where she received her bachelor’s in liberal studies and a multiple subject teaching credential. She received a master’s of education from Azusa Pacific in 2002.
Vargas and her husband Mike reside in Lancaster with their children Tyler (22) and Cole (19).