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vol. 2. issue 37

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December 8,

california

endure | excel | achieve

Norcal hoops: 40 teams ranked, 20 top players. starting pg. 16

he’s ready you blinked & aaron gordon just schooled you. Pg. 18

SJS playoffs: knock-down finish. Pg. 28


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Last season was so good, let’s run it back. The 2011-12 season promises to be unlike any other. Lace up, it all starts on Pg. 16

PHONE 925.566.8500 FAX 925.566.8507 Editorial Editor@SportStarsOnline.com Editor Chace Bryson. Ext. 104 • Chace@SportStarsOnline.com Contributors Bill Kolb, Erik Stordahl, Mitch Stephens, Doug Gardner, Matt Smith, Clay Kallam, Jim McCue, Eric Gilmore, Dave Kiefer, Liz Elliott, Tim Rudd, Jonathan Okanes Photography Butch Noble, Bob Larson, Jonathan Hawthorne, Darryl Henick, Norbert von der Groeben, Phillip Walton Creative Department Art@SportStarsOnline.com Production Manager Mike DeCicco. Ext. 103 • MikeD@SportStarsOnline.com Publisher/President Mike Calamusa. Ext. 106 • Mike@SportStarsOnline.com Advertising & Calendar/Classified Sales Sales@SportStarsOnline.com Account Executives Erik Stordahl • ErikS@SportStars Online.com (Special Sections, Calendar, Marketplace sales)

showtime First Pitch.................................................... 6

fight to the finish: Del OroLoomis football and Brandon Monroe, left, outlasted six other teams in a race for a CIF State Bowl bid.

Locker Room............................................. 8 AAA SportStars of the Week...............11 Behind the Clipboard.............................12 Health Watch...........................................35 Tee2Green................................................36

Pg. 28 Training Time............................................39 Camps + Clinics......................................40 Impulse......................................................44 Reader Survey..........................................45 Photo Finish..............................................46

James K. Leash

20 years: Yup, it’s been that long since a NorCal team beat De La Salle. Pg. 32

where’s your ipad? Don’t have one? Why not? Time is running out, enter now! Pg. 45

ON THE COVER: Archbishop Mitty’s Aaron Gordon. Photo by Norbert von der Groeben.

Reader Resources/Administration Ad Traffic, Subscription, Calendar & Classified Listings info@SportStarsOnline.com • Deb Hollinger. Ext. 101 • Distribution/Delivery Mags@SportStarsOnline.com Distribution Manager Butch Noble. Ext. 107 • Butch@SportStarsOnline.com Information technology John Bonilla CFO Sharon Calamusa • Sharon@SportStarsOnline.com Office Manager/Credit Services Deb Hollinger. Ext. 101 • Deb@SportStarsOnline.com Board of Directors Dennis Erokan, CEO, Placemaking Group Roland Roos, CPA, Roland Roos & Co Susan Bonilla, State Assembly Drew Lawler, Managing Director, AJ Lawler Partners Brad Briegleb, Attorney At Law community SportStars™ Magazine A division of Caliente! Communications, LLC 5356 Clayton Rd., Ste. 222 • Concord, CA • 94521 info@SportStarsOnline.com www.SportStarsOnline.com

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your ticket to bay area sports admit one; rain or shine This Vol. #2, December 2011 Whole No. 37 is published by Caliente! Communications, LLC, 5356 Clayton Rd, Ste. 222, Concord, CA 94521. SportStars™© 2010 by Caliente! Communications, LLC. All rights reserved. Subscription rates: 24 issues, U.S. 3rd class $42 (allow 3 weeks for delivery). 1st class $55. To receive sample issues, please send $3 to cover postage. Back issues are $4 each. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission of Publisher is strictly prohibited. The staff and management, including Board of Directors, of SportStars™© does not advocate or encourage the use of any product or service advertised herein for illegal purposes. Editorial contributions, photos and letters to the editor are welcome and should be addressed to the Editor. All material should be typed, double-spaced on disk or email and will be handled with reasonable care. For materials return, please enclose a stamped, self-addressed envelope. SportStars™© and STARS!™© Clinics are registered trademarks of Caliente! Communications, LLC.

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On the NCS football playoff menu: Surprise, served two ways

S

ome people don’t like surprises. That playoffs — including the defending Div. always surprises us. III bowl champions, Escalon. With many Without the unexpected, things prognosticators considering the NCS Div. can get pretty dull. And nothing is worse III playoff field to be among the strongest, than a dull sporting universe. It doesn’t it’s not a far stretch to think that a victory get any better than true surprises in the would make Campolindo the first public sporting world, which is a big reason school to represent the East Bay in a CIF why the NCAA Basketball Tournament is bowl game. They’d also be the first East beloved by so many. Bay school to go other than De La Salle. We like the upsets, Cinderellas and “We don’t talk about state at all,” Macy longshots. It’s what makes this fun. said. “We never talked about 10-0. We And, in what some might be considernever talked about winning league. ing one of the wackiest high school footThe kids made it a priority to play after ball seasons in quite some time, the North Thanksgiving, and that was it. ... The Coast Section tournament has given us chemistry on this team is so good, the a few surprises to savor in the form of kids would be excited about state mostly Concord and Campolindo-Moraga. because it meant they could just spend They are both playing for championanother week together.” ships on Dec. 9 and 10, respectively. The week Campolindo completed it’s Neither were expected to get this far, and 10-0 regular season, Concord lost 31-22 both did so in very different ways. to College Park-Pleasant Hill, fell to 6-3 Campolindo was the surprise that on the season, and lost out on its shot at kept building over the course of the a second straight Diablo Valley Athletic season, like a giant balloon that everyone League crown. One year after a storied expected would eventually go sputtering run to their first NCS championship away as the air ran out. The Cougars were behind record-setting quarterback Ricky picked to finish in the bottom half of their Lloyd, the Minutemen had the look of a league by many — though technically not team that still needed an identity beyond us. We only predicted league champs this its physical defense. year rather than final league standings. And coach Brian Hamilton found it. In We picked them to finish second (as far as fact, it’d been staring him in the face. you know). “We lost to College Park still trying to Still, when we showed up to Moraga on have a lot of offensive balance and still Oct. 21 to watch Campolindo and rival trying to throw the ball out of open sets,” Miramonte-Orinda face off in a battle of Hamilton said. “I don’t believe in balance, 7-0 teams, we were thrown off kilter when and I went against my beliefs and tried to the Cougars won 42-6. And it just kept force balance, and that was dumb.” going. Undefeated league champs. Then So he fixed it. He had an explosive runtwo dominant playoff wins before taking ning back in Olito Thompson, and just a trip to Cardinal Newman-Santa Rosa on Chace@ as he gave Lloyd more receivers to work Dec. 2 — a house of horrors in previous SportStarsOnline.com with, Hamilton decided to start giving years for Campolindo. Thompson more blockers to run behind. The team fell behind 21-0 only to roar (925) 566-8503 Hamilton basically added a new back and win 35-24. Now, include the blocker every week of the postseason, facts that the Cougars will play top seed adding tight ends, fullbacks, mascots. Marin Catholic-Kentfield in the Division Olito went to work. He set the school III final at the O.co Coliseum — during rushing record with 370 yards in the the 25th Anniversary season of the last playoff opener against Newark Memorial, Campolindo team to play at the Coliseum then topped the East Bay rushing record (the school’s only title game appearance with 457 yards against Las Lomas-Walnut and championship). Furthermore, the Creek before a 41-carry, 270-yard effort winner could quite possibly earn a Caliin a semifinal win over Rancho Cotatefornia Interscholastic State Bowl berth. Rohnert Park. At this point, the script seems almost And just like that, Concord — as the too good. No. 7 seed — had a chance at defending its Division II title “I think we’re at a point where we don’t quite know what against No. 1 Windsor (13-0). we’re doing, but if we try to figure it out we might screw it “From a personal standpoint, because it’s all so unexpected up,” Campolindo coach Kevin Macy said five days before (this playoff run) is a little more fun,” Hamilton said. “No one the team’s championship tilt. “There’s definitely something is giving us a shot against Windsor. No one gave us a shot natural happening, and it may not make sense but we’re just against Rancho Cotate or Lomas, either. We could be the first going to enjoy it.” No. 7 seed to win it all since it went to a 16-team field. How On the same weekend that the Cougars defeated Cardinal much fun is that?” Newman, two other top-ranked contenders for the North’s Exactly. ✪ CIF Div. III bowl berth were eliminated in their section

First Pitch Chace Bryson Editor

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count’EM

kly

Keith Peters/Palo Alto Wee

The number of California Interscholastic Federation state volleyball championships won by Northern California schools in the past two years after Palo Alto, Presentation-San Jose, Union Mine and Branson-Ross each secured crowns on Dec. 3. To illustrate how big of an accomplishment this is, the combined number of NorCal teams to win state titles from 2005-2009 was seven. Left, Palo Alto and Kimmy Whitson won Div. I titles in 2010 and 2011. Right, Campolindo-Moraga were the 2010 Div. III champs.

Bob Larson

reasons we’re bitter about college football. Wait, no .... So, it’s official. The reee(diculous)-match is on. LSU has to beat Alabama again for the national championship. Because the computers hate Stanford, and the human voters realized that a loss to Iowa State was a good enough reason to count out Oklahoma State. And Mercury is in retrograde, and the Magic 8-Ball said “My sources say, ‘Snore-fest.’” Anyway. All the hue and cry about the absurdity of the BCS does have one positive aspect: It makes us appreciate just how great high school football’s system for determining a champion is. Here are the top five reasons why high school football’s postseason is better than college. 1. Just because they’re in the best league in Northern California, the top two teams from the EBAL do not pass Go and proceed directly to the championship game. They actually have to play their way to the final. 2. Every game counts. No really. There is no SEC do-over rule. If you beat a team in the regular season and have a similar record, you get seeded ahead of them and they have to win some games to get another crack at you. 3. The best team in EVERY LEAGUE gets a chance to win a championship. No matter what the weighted strength-of-schedule number looks like, or if somebody else has cooler uniforms or nicknames. Win your league, make the playoffs. That simple. 4. People who have never seen your team play, and might not even know that your team exists, don’t get to throw darts at a board, er, vote week in and week out on how much better or worse you are than some other team. 5. Rumor has it that high school teams actually have to be able to score on offense in order to hoist trophies. We heard that somewhere — Bill Kolb

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rapidFIRE

Actor/ Actress whose movies you’ll always watch

George Clooney

First word that What do you comes to mind Toughest MOST want for when we say Christmas ‘Jersey Shore’ place to play

MacBook Pro laptop

AWFUL

Owen Owens Field, De La Salle

Jordan Weiss, San Ramon Valley FB

Eddie Murphy

Flat-screen TV

TAN

Our home field, because I always want to please our fans

Favorite sport to see live

Fastest mile time

6

Football

min.

Can’t remember

Football, of course

Right around

Track & Field

Curtis Goins, Vacaville FB

Power Balance Arena

Zoe Saldana

TOMS shoes Ariell Bostick, Bishop O’Dowd hoops

Snooki

5:30

sayWHAT? “I think this game meant a lot to him, just simply about his legacy, and wanting to win this game for his teammates. He’s received a number of individual accolades, but the reality is that this is something he can share (with teammates) for the rest of their lives — getting to the Coliseum.”

Butch Noble

San Ramon Valley-Danville football coach Mark Kessler on the North Coast Section semifinal performance of quarterback Zach Kline, left. Just days after being named the Gatorade State Player of the Year, Kline tossed three touchdown passes and rushed for another as the Wolves defeated cross-town rival Monte Vista 37-21 and avenged a one-point, regular-season defeat to the Mustangs. The No. 7-seeded San Ramon Valley (10-3) will take on top seed De La Salle (12-1) in the NCS Division I final at the O.Co Coliseum on Dec. 10.

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melanie wade palo alto . volleyball . senior

Butch Noble Like us on Facebook

MELANIE’S QUICK HITS Favorite athlete: Misty May-Treanor Favorite subject: History Favorite Starbucks drink: Carmel Frappucino

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Winning a state championship is always memorable but when it involves coming back after being on the brink of elimination, it makes it that much sweeter. Melanie Wade and the Palo Alto Vikings know all about this as they beat Marymount 25-17, 25-23, 22-25, 20-25, 17-15. They trailed 13-7 in the fifth set. Wade finished with a match-high 27 kills. SportStars Magazine: What sparked the comeback in the fifth set? Melanie Wade: It was very nerve-wracking. Marymount made a couple of errors and we were fighting back all the way to the end. We weren’t doubting ourselves. We were in this situation before and we knew we could come back from that. SSM: Favorite moment of this season? MW: Our team always does dance parties. On senior night, the dance party before the game was really fun. SSM: You’re a senior. What are your plans? MW: I’m gonna play at the University of Washington. I’m really excited. The campus is great, the team and coaches are awesome. It’ll be a really great experience and I can’t wait.

honorable mention

bridget blum The UniversitySF senior posted the second-fastest time in the Div. V race of the CIF state cross country championships, leading the Red Devils to the team title on Nov. 26.

kurtis bettencourt The Hilmar senior kicked the game-winning 41-yard field goal to defeat Escalon 20-17 in the Sac-Joaquin Section Div. IV championship game on Dec. 2.

nick ruotolo The Amador Valley senior guard torched the nets at the Gold Dust Tournament from Dec. 1-3. He buried 13 3-pointers and took home MVP honors.

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In-game outbursts are meant to help our players, not diss opponents Inexperienced players especially get caught up in the excitement of the game, everything’s moving really fast, and they just don’t remember to make the girl dribble with her left hand. So I remind her. In a loud voice so she can hear me. (Sometimes people think I’m yelling at my player, but I feel like I’m yelling to her.)

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Our basketball team played last week, and the other team’s coach kept yelling to his players about our players. He’d say things like “She can’t dribble with her left hand,” or, after a foul, “Was she going to make that shot?” It seemed disrespectful — is that something coaches should do? C.G., Walnut Creek   hat was probably me, though I’m certainly not the only coach who tries to make sure his players attack the weaknesses of the opposition — I’m just louder at it than most.  So first, let’s look at it from the coach’s point of view. I always tell my players to try to make the person they’re guarding do what she doesn’t want to do. If she wants to shoot, make her drive; if she wants to go left, make her go right. She may be a good driver, and she may able to go right, but almost always players want to do what they do best, and if you make them do what’s second on their list, you’re ahead of the game.  Unfortunately, it’s hard to get players used to this kind of defense. Inexperienced players especially get caught up in the excitement of the game, everything’s moving really fast, and they just don’t remember to make the girl dribble with her left

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hand. So I remind her. In a loud voice so she can hear me. (Sometimes people think I’m yelling at my player, but I feel like I’m yelling to her — if I speak softly, big stick or no, she probably won’t hear me.) Eventually, hopefully, my players are able to start taking away the opponents’ strengths, but when I’m reminding them of those strengths and weaknesses, I’m also letting the opposing player know what we’re trying to do, and sometimes she feels insulted. But should she feel dissed? The answer is a qualified maybe, because it depends on the personality of the player. Some people take my remarks as a challenge, and vow to prove me wrong. If I keep saying they can’t go left, they go left — and there have been times they have punished me and my team by scoring a bunch of points. More often than not, though, they are definitely less effective going to their weaker hand (or driving rather than shooting), and for those players, it’s foolish to listen.  In fact, very few athletes are capable of listening to other coaches or opposing players and still performing at their highest level. Most athletes are much better off just focusing on what they’re doing and what they should be doing, and block-

Behind the Clipboard Clay Kallam

ing out any distractions from the crowd or other team. (There are a more than a few athletes who play better when they block out the voices of their own coaches, and/or their parents; it all depends on the individual.) In the end, though, learning how to deal with distractions is part of maturing as a person and an athlete. In junior high, kids get very upset when other people talk about them. In high school, not so much. And in college and beyond, it’s generally just background noise, like a bad radio station in the car next to you at the stoplight. As long as the other team’s coach isn’t yelling at you (“42, you’re horrible and your hair is ugly”), it’s something you should try to rise above. He’s just trying to win the game, and instruct his players, and it isn’t personal. Adjusting to that kind of a distraction takes a little effort, but it’s a skill well worth acquiring — not everyone is going to think you’re wonderful and special when you get out in the real world, but even if they don’t (and they let you know about it), you still have to find a way to get the job done. ✪ Clay Kallam is an assistant athletic director and girls varsity basketball coach at Bentley High in Lafayette. To submit a question for Behind the Clipboard, email Coach Kallam at clayk@fullcourt. com.

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Former South Bay hoops standout is giving back through youth sports By erik stordahl | SportStars

Embedded in the South Bay is a program with a passion for youth sports. And after more than 10 years, Mike Allen Sports continues to emerge as a haven for kids and teens to learn, grow and have fun as athletes. Founded by Mike Allen as the Fun Tyme Sports Academy in 1999, the program offers a wide array of camps, clinics and leagues that run year round for basketball. Baseball, volleyball and football are also among other sports offered. Allen himself is well-versed in sports. A standout football and baseball athlete in high school, he didn’t pick up basketball until his senior year. That didn’t stop him from getting recruited and playing for San Jose Christian College in 1991. There he was co-captain for three seasons and led his team to three NBCAA titles. After graduating, Allen’s playing career was just getting started. He continued playing overseas in Poland, and in the offseason he would return to the States for training. But with so much downtime, he needed something to fill the void. “I had so much time on my hands,” Allen said. “I needed to figure out what I wanted to do. I started running camps to start this sports academy.” With his playing days over, Allen went full throttle on the Fun Tyme Sports Academy. It has since evolved into a magnate for youth sports. Right now, there are more than 1,000 kids in his Ballin’ Ambassadors basketball league. Doors continue to open for Allen as he has partnered with the Golden State Warriors as part of the Junior Warriors and Junior NBA / Junior WNBA. A coup for any local youth sports

Mike Allen shows off his skills during an exhibition with the Ballin’ Ambassadors. program. With the success of his program seemingly skyrocketing, Allen still finds time to coach. He’s serving his second year as head coach for the varsity program at Gunderson-San Jose. What he’s done with the team is nothing short of a miracle. The year before he took over, the Grizzlies finished 4-21. Last season, Allen led his team to a solid 14-8 record and within one point of upsetting Robert Louis Stevenson-Pebble Beach in the first round of the Central Coast Section playoffs. Poised to build on last season’s promising efforts, Gunderson got off on the right foot this year. They beat Sobrato-Morgan Hill 66-55 in their season opener on Nov. 29 — the first

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Gunderson win against a Div. I opponent in 15 years. What’s the reason for the turnaround? “This is something they want,” Allen said. “They just responded quickly to how much they want it. The fact that I care about them, not as an athlete, but that I cared about them as a person. As someone who doesn’t mind being the parent away from home, as someone who doesn’t mind being the big brother.” Some of the players stepping up for Allen are seniors Lodi Vertilus and Lamar Smith; juniors Ryan Tran, Jose Silva and Nick Melchor; sophomore Mohamed Ali; and freshmen David Awolowo and Jonathan Chavez. With most of his players still with at least a couple years left, Allen has the opportunity to build something very special at Gunderson. When the season ends, Allen’s program is in full swing. They’re launching the first season of volleyball in April of next year followed by the first season of football. “Back in 1999, my vision was for (Mike Allen Sports) to be worldwide,” Allen said. “There are a lot of programs out there. We all reinvent the wheel in some way. The real key aspect is what is it all about? ... For a program like this to last there has to be strong relationships, love in your programs. … It took a lot of heartache and sacrifice to get it where it is today.” Although Mike Allen Sports is a strong presence in the South Bay, there could be more locations popping up soon. To find out how to get involved with Mike Allen Sports or to get a location set up in your area, check out www.mikeallensports. com. ✪

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The North Coast Section is no stranger to success at the California Interscholastic Federation State Cross Country Championships. It has had more than its fair share of team and individual titles, and 2011 was no different. Nine different runners clocked Top 5 finishes in races at Woodward Park in Fresno on Nov. 26, and one team — the University-San Francisco girls — took him a title. Campolindo’s Carrie Verdon was one of two individual champions from the NCS, winning the Divsion III race for the second time in as many years. Her winning time of 17 minutes, 18 seconds was the second-fastest girls time of the entire day, but it only won her race by a mere second. Julia Maxwell of Branson-Ross was the other section’s other individual state champion, winning the Division V race by 30 seconds over the next closest competitor, Bridget Blum of University-SF. We had a number of leftover photos from the North Coast Section championship on Nov. 19, so we thought we’d honor a few who had standout trips to State.

LEFT: Carrie Verdon of CampolindoMoraga won her second straight Division III state title by edging out Karlie Garcia of Oakmont. Facing page TOP left: Nick Ratto of St. Joseph-Notre Dame finished third in the Division V boys race, helping his team finish third as well. TOP right: Campolindo’s Thomas Joyce took a third place finish in the Division III boys race. BOTTOM ROW: Amador Valley-Pleasanton’s Jenna Pianin, left, Piner-Santa Rosa’s Luis Luna, center, and San Ramon Valley-Danville’s Parker Deuel, right, all grabbed fifth-place finishes in their respective races.

Photos by Jonathan Hawthorne

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BoysPreseasonTop20 Records are from 2010-11 1. Archbishop Mitty-San Jose (32-2) Aaron Gordon and Co. set to defend CIF Div. II crown. 2. Salesian-Richmond (26-12) Perhaps no NorCal team has more depth at the guard and wing positions. 3. De La Salle-Concord (27-6) Every bit as a talented as the CIF Div. I runner-up group from a year ago. 4. Bishop O’Dowd-oakland (25-7) Losing all-state talent Brandon Ashley won’t hurt as much as many may think. 5. Sheldon-Sacramento (24-8) Young, talented nucleus should only get better as the season goes on. 6. Sacramento (27-6) If it develops a strong post presence to go with its guard play, look out. 7. McClymonds-Oakland (16-15) After a year of rebuilding, all signs point to a return of the Mack in the OAL this year. 8. Jesuit-Carmichael (22-10) Returns core group from a team that was one of just two to beat Mitty last year. 9. Newark Memorial-Newark (22-7) Expect a well-coached mix of returning talent and up-and-comers. 10. Center-Antelope (25-8) Senior Christopher Smith has the potential to lead the Sacramento region in scoring. 11. Berkeley (21-5) 12. St. Ignatius-San Francisco (17-10) 13. St. Mary’s-Berkeley (23-12) 14. Deer Valley-Antioch (21-7) 15. Burbank-Sacramento (23-5) 16. Sacred Heart Cathedral-San Francisco (23-7) 17. Franklin-Elk Grove (25-7) 18. Vallejo (16-12) 19. El Cerrito (25-8) 20. Heritage-Brentwood (16-11)

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BIG FOUR When it came to setting up our preseason boys rankings, we looked at four teams who reached state finals a year ago and said that’s our Top 4. Now who goes first? We sided with the only one that was the defending state champ, Mitty. It also doesn’t hurt that the Monarchs feature the No. 6-ranked junior prospect in the nation in Aaron Gordon. Salesian is not far behind, because they have a junior prospect in Jabari Bird who seems poised to crack a few national rankings himself. And if we’re being perfectly honest, De La Salle could own the top spot by Jan. 17. That’s because they will match up with Aaron Gordon and Co. in the Martin Luther King Classic Showcase on Jan. 16. That holiday will certainly shake the rankings tree as Salesian will also face No. 6 Sacramento. The wild card of these rankings is McClymonds. After a mediocre 2010-11 campaign, there’s a good group of seniors ready to break out. If big man Jamaree Strickland can recover enough from knee surgery to be a factor in Februrary, look out. We know one thing, it’s going to be fun to watch it unfold. — Chace Bryson

Jalen Hicks Sheldon-Sacramento Photo by Phillip Walton

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high octane There’s always a tension between talent and teamwork when it comes to preseason rankings. Clearly, it takes talent to become one of the top programs in Northern California, but it also takes a mix of chemistry and toughness — and sometimes the latter qualities can trump a roster full of future college stars. That’s the case in this year’s preseason rankings, as St. Mary’s of Stockton’s high-pressure defense and high-octane offense offset its lack of size, in our estimation, and put the Rams ahead of the supremely-talented Dragons of Bishop O’Dowd. Yes, O’Dowd went to the state finals last year in Division III with a roster heavy on sophomore stars, but St. Mary’s won its third straight California championship, even though the Rams didn’t have the college coaches drooling as they did when they watched the Oakland school. Carondelet and Berkeley are traditional powers that still have plenty of firepower, but both programs were hurt by graduation, leaving St. Mary’s and O’Dowd as the clear one and two. Certainly it could be argued that the Dragons are simply too tall and too deep for the Rams to contend with, but we’ll find out for sure Feb. 11 when the two teams play in Stockton. And it says here St. Mary’s walks away smiling. — Clay Kallam

Gabby Green St. Mary’s-Berkeley Photo by Bob Larson

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GirlsPreseasonTop20 Records are from 2010-11 1. St. Mary’s-Stockton (32-2) Talent. Experience. Defending three-time state champion. ‘Nuff said. 2. Bishop O’Dowd-Oakland (25-8) All the big guns return for the last season’s Div. III state runner-up. 3. Carondelet-Concord (28-6) No more Erica Payne, but Hannah Huffman and Natalie Romeo are a dangerous duo. 4. Berkeley (29-2) ’Jackets will reload and once again be the NorCal favorite in Division I. 5. St. Ignatius-San Francisco (24-8) Young Irish team gets an infusion of talented freshmen, so expect it to be one of region’s best by March. 6. St. Mary’s-Berkeley (29-6) Could be vulnerable, but only until Gabby Green returns from her ankle injury. 7. Archbishop Mitty-San Jose (24-9) Mix of senior leaders and young talent will keep perennial power sharp. 8. Terra Nova-Pacifica (24-5) You have to love the backcourt of Terilyn Moe and Ivonne Cook-Taylor. Tigers just need signature win. 9. Sacramento (27-9) Allie Green leads the way as Div. III power looks to replace its graduated backcourt. 10. Miramonte-Orinda (23-7) Has pieces in place to move past league powers Campolindo-Moraga and Dougherty Valley-San Ramon. 11. Dougherty Valley-San Ramon (28-3) 12. Lincoln-Stockton (27-5) 13. Salesian-Richmond (24-6) 14. Modesto Christian (25-9) 15. Deer Valley-Antioch (20-8) 16. Marin Catholic-Kentfield (25-9) 17. Del Oro-Loomis (27-5) 18. Palo Alto (22-5) 19. James Logan-Union City (23-7) 20. Pleasant Grove-Elk Grove (18-11)

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Aaron Gordon isn’t just following his siblings’ footsteps at Archbishop Mitty, he’s setting an even greater path By jonathan okanes | Contributor

W

herever Aaron Gordon winds up in college, the media relations staff won’t face many challenges helping him deal with all the attention. In fact, those folks may want to be careful. Gordon could take their jobs. Gordon, who just started his junior season at Archbishop Mitty High in San Jose, is about as polished a 16-year old as you will find. The 6-foot-8 star forward answers questions for an interview with thoughtfulness and confidence, exuding wisdom rare for someone barely halfway through high school. “He’s someone that is very mature for his age,” Mitty coach Tim Kennedy said. “We go to events and he can work a room. He has that presence already. He’s going to be successful no matter what he does.” Even at 16, it looks like there’s a good chance the thing Gordon will be doing is playing professional basketball someday. Gordon is the sixth-ranked prospect in the country for the 2013 class according to ESPN and has major college programs crossing their fingers that he will come their way. Gordon has already taken visits to Washington, Arizona and Stanford and also is considering Kentucky, Oregon and Stanford. “We pretty much let him go and take a look at it,” said Gordon’s father, Ed, himself a former college basketball player at San Diego State. “We let him get a feel for it and he lets us know what he’s thinking. We help with guidance, but we feel this is his decision.” Aaron Gordon says his enhanced maturity is a product of

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being the youngest of three children, each of whom have been wildly successful at basketball. Older brother Drew was also a Mitty star before attending UCLA. He’s since transferred to New Mexico. Sister Elisabeth is a sophomore on Harvard’s basketball team. “I feel like I’m a little more mature than most 16-year olds,” Gordon said. “When I was younger, I always tried to act older. I tried to act older to try to fit in with my brother and sister.” Not only did Aaron have two older siblings, he was raised in an ultra-competitive environment. Gordon’s parents installed a sport court in their back yard which was the site of many “back yard battles,” according to Drew. “We’d fight over stuff,” said Drew, a senior for the Lobos who is averaging 11 points and a team-best 9.7 rebounds per game. “It would drive my mom crazy. Whether it would be who got the last Cheerio or who gets to eat dinner first, we’d fight over it.” That competitiveness is no doubt a staple of Aaron’s game. But it’s easier to be competitive when your skill set is usually so much superior to anyone else on the floor. Aaron started his basketball life as a point guard. It wasn’t until he had a growth spurt during middle school that he turned into a post player. Aaron never lost his guard skills, which makes him a dynamic big man. His talents landed him a starting spot on the USA U-16 National Team during the summer, where he helped lead the Americans to the FIBA Americas Championship gold medal in Cancun, Mexico. He averaged 17 points, 11.2 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 3.2 blocks during the five games.

Norbert von der Groeben

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“My brother and sister told me not to let my head get big. That helps out a ton because it always makes you want to get better, makes you hungry to develop your game.” Aaron Gordon, right “During it, it was absolutely terrible,” Aaron said. “Two-a-days every single day, terrible food and you couldn’t drink the water. But it was a new experience and that’s always fun.” While Drew was showered with attention at Mitty, Aaron is on pace to become an even bigger star. As a sophomore, he led the Monarchs to their first-ever state title and was named the state Sophomore of the Year by Cal-Hi Sports. Mitty entered the 2011-12 season ranked 15th nationally by Maxpreps.com. Aaron is at peace with the circus that is sure to follow him around, especially because he watched Drew go through it. “He’s paved the way for me, so I can look at him and not make the same mistakes,” Aaron said. “My brother and sister told me not to let my head get big. That helps out a ton because it always makes you want to get better, makes you hungry to develop your game.” Aaron learned an important lesson from Drew’s recruiting journey. Gordon left UCLA early in his sophomore season because of differences with coach Ben Howland. That’s why Aaron says the personality of the coach will

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be one of the main factors he considers before choosing his college program. “He saw my whole process and saw how badly I was suffering,” Drew said. “I just wasn’t in a good place. He knew that. We talk all the time. He doesn’t want to be anywhere I was. He’s a smart kid.” There actually aren’t many similarities in the brothers’ games. When Drew was at Mitty, he relied mostly on his athleticism and strength, the same style of play he still displays for the Lobos. Because of Aaron’s history on the perimeter, he is more skilled than Drew was in high school, more of a finesse player. Aaron also is only about 210 pounds while Drew was around 240 as a senior. “The one thing we have that is the same is heart, and nobody can see that,” Drew said. “Our heart and our mentality are pretty similar.” Aaron said he and Drew played every other day during a two-week stretch when Drew returned home this summer. “He has bragging rights. He’s bigger than I am,” Aaron said. “He just kind of bowls me out of the way.” Said Drew: “He’s getting better. I’m a little more developed than he is, a little stronger. When all else fails, I just

Jonathan Hawthorne

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Norbert von der Groeben

Whether he’s posting up or getting after it on defense, Archbishop Mitty’s Aaron Gordon has the versatility that’s extremely attractive to big-time college scouts. The offers are already pouring in and a strong season will solidify his place as a top national recruit.

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back him down in the post and go to work. But he’s definitely getting better. A lot of people would like to have his skills, especially at his size.” While Drew still has the edge individually, Aaron has something Drew never got – a state title. Mitty lost in the California Interscholastic Federation state championship game in Drew’s junior season, and he vowed to get back. But his senior season was derailed after 11 games because of a season-ending ankle injury. “Unfortunately, he calls every once in a while to tell me he’d broken one of my records and holds the state title over my head all the time,” Drew said. “Whenever he runs out of stuff to argue about, he brings up the state title.” While the brothers are both extroverted and good-natured off the court, they have their differences personality-wise as well. Aaron says Drew sometimes chooses to do things the hard way. “If someone tells my brother to walk down the yellow brick road, he’s going to pick up every brick and hit himself on the head with it,” Aaron said. “I’ll just kind of walk past it. He makes mistakes, but he always learns from it and always bounces back.” While Drew never won a state title, Aaron now has a chance to start a collection. To repeat this year, the Monarchs will have to do so with largely a new cast of characters. Mitty lost nine seniors from last year’s team, but with Gordon on the floor, it should be competitive with anyone it plays. “We have a lot of young guys who aren’t up to speed yet on what it takes to be a varsity player,” Kennedy said. “(Gordon) has been setting the tone with those guys and trying to get them up to his level so we can be competitive. There are a lot of expectations that we shouldn’t lose because we have Aaron Gordon on our team.” Gordon is confident Mitty can return to last year’s level and says definitively that another state title should be the Monarchs’ expectation. But it may take time for everything to fall into place. “We’re a young team. It’s going to take a lot for us to get the right mindset and buy into the system,” Gordon said. “I see it happening a little bit with each scrimmage. We’re not even near the place we need to be. I know eventually we’ll get there and meet our expectations.” ✪

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Parker Uu

Jabari Bird

SCHOOL: Jesuit-Carmichael YEAR: Senior HT./POS.: 6-4 / Guard THE DETAILS: As one of a trio of quality guards returning from last year’s team that advanced to the SJS Div. I final, Uu is the team’s most potent shooter and capable of scoring in bunches. A third-year starter, Uu is attracting the attention of D-I colleges with his leadership both on and off the court.

SCHOOL: Salesian-Richmond YEAR: Junior HT./POS.: 6-5 / Guard THE DETAILS: After a dominant, if not a tad topsy-turvy sophomore year, Bird is poised for a dominant season. He begins the season as the ranked No. 17 on the ESPN 150 list for the 2013 class. His 6-5 size gives him all sorts of versatility for the very talented Salesian team.

Richard Longrus

Tajai Johnson

SCHOOL: Vallejo YEAR: Senior HT./POS.: 6-2 / Guard THE DETAILS: The highest rated guard in Northern California according to some recruiting lists, the UC Riverside signee is coming off a junior season that saw him average 25.8 points, 9.1 rebounds and 4.4 assists.

Bob Larson

Aaron Gordon

Langston Morris-Walker

SCHOOL: Archbishop Mitty-San Jose YEAR: Junior HT./POS.: 6-8 / Center THE DETAILS: Gordon is among the top 10 recruits in the nation for his class (ESPN) and was named the Sophomore State Player of the Year by CalHiSports.com a year ago. He will be trying to lead the Monarchs back to the Div. II state final where he had 17 points and 21 rebounds in a 53-50 win a year ago.

SCHOOL: Berkeley YEAR: Senior HT./POS.: 6-5 / Guard THE DETAILS: ESPN ranks the Oregon State-bound Yellowjacket as one of the nation’s top 150 recruits from the 2012 class. Even if little is known about his supportng cast at Berkeley, Yellowjackets fans will know what to expect from Morris-Walker — plenty of slashing to the basket and finishing at the rim.

Tanner Giddings

Elliott Pitts

SCHOOL: Windsor YEAR: Senior HT./POS.: 6-9 / Center

THE DETAILS: After a stong junior season and even stronger summer with the Oakland Soldiers AAU squad, Giddings signed a letter of intent to Fresno State and is quickly shedding the title of “sleeper.” Giddings used his size and soft hands to average a double-double of 16 points, 10 rebounds as a junior.

SCHOOL: De La Salle-Concord YEAR: Junior HT./POS.: 6-5 / Guard THE DETAILS: Like Bird, Pitts is an extremely versatile player. He has all the skills of a guard, but the length to play up to four positions on the floor. Last year, USF made him the first De La Salle player to ever receive a scholarship offer as a sophomore. He’s since picked up offers from Cal and Arizona St.

Jonathan Hawthorne

Arik Armstead

Stephen Domingo

SCHOOL: St. Ignatius-San Francisco YEAR: Junior HT./POS.: 6-7 / Forward THE DETAILS: Domingo is undoubtedly the best player in San Francisco for 2011-12. According to Rivals.com, he currently holds offers from as many as 15 schools, including Georgetown, Georgia Tech, Memphis, Virginia Tech and at least five Pac-12 schools. His length and shooting ability make him extremely difficult to guard.

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SCHOOL: Bishop O’Dowd-Oakland YEAR: Senior HT./POS.: 6-7 / Center THE DETAILS: With his twin-tower mate Brandon Ashley having transferred to Findlay Prep, the Dragons have become Longrus’ team to take charge of. Expect the points and rebounds numbers to spike for the Washington State-commit as he attempts to lead O’Dowd toward another Div. III postseason run.

Doug Ko/ SanFranPreps.com

SCHOOL: Pleasant Grove-Elk Grove YEAR: Senior HT./POS.: 6-8 / Center THE DETAILS: The highly-touted football recruit will bring his 6-foot-8 frame to the hardwood as soon as the Eagles’ playoff run concludes on the gridiron. His size and excellent hands make him a scoring and rebounding threat on the interior. Armstead’s athleticism has some Division I schools considering letting him play both basketball and football at the next level.

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Hannah Huffman

Courtney Range

SCHOOL: Carondelet-Concord YEAR: Senior HT./POS.: 5-9 / Guard THE DETAILS: Huffman is off to Notre Dame next fall, but this year she’ll bring her all-around game back to Concord. If opponents try to guard her with quickness, she posts up; if they try to counter her size and strength, she moves to the perimeter.

SCHOOL: St. Mary’s-Stockton YEAR: Junior HT./POS.: 6-2 / Wing THE DETAILS: An extremely high basketball IQ (her grandfather is long-time West Coast college referee Charlie Range) coupled with size, skill and explosiveness makes Range a perfect fit in the St. Mary’s system. She’s tremendous in the press, and can score in transition, from behind the arc, and in the paint.

Gabby Green

Oderah Chidom

SCHOOL: St. Mary’s-Berkeley YEAR: Sophomore HT./POS.: 6-1 / Guard THE DETAILS: After leading St. Mary’s to a state title as a freshman, Green was the last cut from the USA Basketball U-16 team. She is not yet fully recovered from a summer ankle injury, but when the 6-1 guard returns, she will make an immediate impact with ballhandling, defense and scoring.

SCHOOL: Bishop O’Dowd         YEAR: Junior HT./POS.: 6-2 / Wing THE DETAILS: Chidom gives new meaning to the word “long” – her length adds dimensions to her game both offensively and defensively, and she improved dramatically over the course of last season. If that improvement continues, she’ll be in the top five next year.

K.C. Waters SCHOOL: Bishop O’Dowd-Oakland YEAR: Junior HT./POS.: 6-1 / Post THE DETAILS: Waters is a strong, skilled player who helped the Dragons to the Division III state title game last year – and then had a strong showing at the USA Basketball U-16 trials in June. Few can match her combination of strength and quickness on the block.

Natalie Romeo Bob Larson

Mariya Moore

Ivonne Cook-Taylor

SCHOOL: Salesian-Richmond YEAR: Sophomore HT./POS.: 6-1 / Wing THE DETAILS: An athletic wing with skills – Moore’s size and explosiveness make her one of the top players in the country for her class. She is already drawing heavy attention from elite basketball colleges, but in the meantime is leading Salesian to the upper echelons of Div. IV.

SCHOOL: Terra Nova-Pacifica YEAR: Senior HT./POS.: 5-10 / Guard THE DETAILS: Cook-Taylor is a smooth and athletic guard who is especially effective in transition. She can get to the rim seemingly whenever she wants to, and is also a superb rebounder.

Kelli Hayes

Elisha Davis SCHOOL: Berkeley YEAR: Senior HT./POS.: 5-7 / Guard THE DETAILS: The Arizona State-bound Davis is off-thecharts quick, but after the graduation of much of Berkeley’s firepower, she’s going to have to adjust to being the focus of the defense rather than just an afterthought.

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SCHOOL: Carondelet         YEAR: Sophomore HT./POS.: 5-7 / Guard THE DETAILS: Romeo didn’t get as much attention as her game deserved last year, as Erica Payne (now at Stanford) and Hannah Huffman got most of the love. But without Romeo at the point, neither of those two would have been able to do what they did – nor would Carondelet.

Jonathan Hawthorne

SCHOOL: Archbishop Mitty-San Jose YEAR: Sophomore HT./POS.: 6-0 / Wing THE DETAILS: Yet another long athletic wing with impressive skills, Hayes was one of the surprises of the USA Basketball tryouts last spring, and her development means she will play a big role for one of the South Bay’s best programs.

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Most programs don’t talk of state titles in late November. Most programs aren’t like St. Mary’s-Stockton

“I

By clay kallam | Contributor

f we don’t win a state championship, it’s not a successful season.” That means Tom Gonsalves and his St. Mary’s Rams only have a 60 percent success rate — but most programs would be pretty happy with six California titles in 10 seasons, including the last three in a row. And now in Division II, Gonsalves and company are primed to win championship number seven in 2011-12, and their fourth in a row, which would tie a state record. Along the way, St. Mary’s will be pushing for a top national ranking, and as always, will make a trip to the Nike TOC in Phoenix over Christmas break to play against the best girls’ teams in the nation — which is more than a little ironic because there was a time when Gonsalves wouldn’t walk across the street to watch girls play basketball. “I hated girls’ basketball,” he says, “I thought it was ridiculous.” So after playing baseball at Pacific, he always coached boys. “I paid my dues. I coached boys’ freshman basketball for five years,” and then he landed the boys’ varsity job at Tokay High in Lodi. In his 10 years, the Tigers won five league championships — “and they had never been above .500 before.” Fate intervened, though, in the form of four daughters. And when the oldest, Gina, went to St. Mary’s, the girls’ job opened up, and the basketball landscape suddenly underwent a major seismic shift. Now teams throughout Northern California had to start dealing with a maddening, scrambling, disruptive, non-stop press and a rain of three-pointers in an uptempo offense — all inspired by a highintensity coach who makes his feelings very clear about mistakes. Another bit of irony: “When I first started coaching,” Gonsalves says, “we never took a shot outside the key. We played tough defense — Bobby Knight-type basketball.” The Rams still play tough defense, and Gonsalves’ sideline demeanor still resembles that of Knight’s, but unlike the great Indiana teams, St. Mary’s wants to run and run and run, and then run some more. Junior wing Courtney Range, who’s poised for a breakout season, says of the offense. “It may look disorganized, but it’s very crisp. It’s very organized.” And the press? “I’ve hung around with great coaches,” says Gonsalves, “and I’ve learned so much.” Vance Walberg, now prominent for the Dribble Drive Motion offense, and Eric Cederquist are two he mentions. “I liked Vance’s press, but I wanted to take it to another level,” he says. “And Eric taught me an extension to Vance’s press” – and it’s grown from there. “I’m one of those guys who wants perfection,” says Gonsalves, “so I change it every year. It’s become a science; it’s fun to see things evolve.” The foundations of the press, though, are discipline and anticipation. “You anticipate the trap and you try to fill your lanes,” he says. “Everybody has to anticipate everything. You can get discouraged because if you have one weak link on your press, it’s going to be a layup line for the other team.” The system does still require talent — but talent has never been an issue at St. Mary’s.

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“The national rankings don’t matter that much to me,” she says, “but “Everybody says I recruit, but my athletic director is really strict,” I want to tie the record for most state championships in a row.” Gonsalves says. “When a girl comes to me, I just say ‘Go talk to my AD.’” Oh, and one other thing. “The only game I’m nervous about is LinWhen he first arrived at St. Mary’s, though, he didn’t come emptycoln,” she says. “They’re our rival, and I want to demolish them. They handed. “My whole AAU team came with me,” he said, think they have the opportunity to beat us this year, and I want to Led by Dominique Banks, who outplayed future Stanford star and throw it back in their faces.” WNBA champion Candice Wiggins in the state title game, Gonsalves Such bravado might not play well with conservative types, but St. claimed his first big trophy at what is now Power Balance Pavilion in Mary’s is well-positioned to back up Camera’s bulletin-board material. Sacramento. Along with Range, a big-time 2013 recruit, and Camera, who will go Also in the program was Jacki Gemelos, one of the most dynamic to the Academy of Art to play basketball, Gonsalves can call on point talents in the game before three ACL tears slowed her down. guard Onome Jemerigbe, transfer Charise Holloway and returner “She was as good as it gets,” says Gonsalves. “She had a great career, Unique Coleman. and then here comes Chelsea (Gray, now at Duke), and she idolized “Onome is one of my favorite players,” he says. “She is the X factor – Jacki. I kept telling her ‘You’ll never be as good as Jacki,’ but now she’s you can’t press her. She is a dream to coach; I tell every college someone pretty dang close.” is going to get a steal.” If it wasn’t clear already, Gonsalves is a very demanding coach, durHolloway, a 5-9 transfer from Modesto Christian, is “a physical specing practice and in games. imen,” and could well lead the Rams in rebounding, and maybe even “That’s what I prefer,” says Range. “I don’t want a laid-back coach.” scoring. Coleman, at 5-10, is much improved, and gives St. Mary’s a Reggie Camera, a senior guard, agrees. “I hate playing when coaches starting five that Gonsalves is very excited about. don’t yell at me. I need that.” “Our bigger people have traditionally not been able to shoot as well,” It does take some adjustment to play at St. Mary’s. Range transferred Jonathan Hawthorne/photos he says, “but this year they can — and we’re opening things up.” in after her freshman year at rival Lincoln-Stockton, and she says “You PREVIOUS PAGE: St. Mary’s playIn addition, they run the press extremely well. “This year’s team might have to pay attention to every little detail.” ers celebrate following their 56-48 Even as a more-seasoned junior she won’t admit total comfort. “It’s Northern Regional championship vic- be the most athletic we’ve ever had,” says Gonsalves. “We are so quick — going to be hard no matter how long you’ve been here,” she says. “It’s tory over Del Oro-Loomis last March. this might be the best press we’ve ever had. These girls are exactly a fit for my system,” he says. easier, but it’s still hard.” ABOVE: Senior point guard Regina This is certainly bad news for Sac-Joaquin opponents, but it’s great Though Gonsalves is very upbeat about this year’s team, Camera no- Camera is one of several key returning news for Camera and the girls in the St. Mary’s program. They are ticed some issues early on. players for the Rams this season. ready to continue Gonsalves’ run of success in Stockton, and even if “We got off to a rough start because we had so many new girls,” she they don’t get to hang up another state championship banner, they’re says. “The new transfers don’t realize how good the program is. They still going to be a tremendous team playing against topflight opposition. can’t take practice as a joke any more.” “We don’t have to win state to have a great season,” says Range, and heading into her fourth Of course, Camera’s competitiveness is right up there with Gonsalves’. “I hate losing so I will do anything in my power to win,” she says – and for that reason, she doesn’t feel any extra pres- year at the school, Camera has already put things into perspective. “I’ve learned so much,” she says. “It’s been the ultimate experience.” ✪ sure to uphold the St. Mary’s legacy.

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Mad Dash

James K. Leash

James K. Leash

Seven top-ranked programs, two section titles and one state bowl berth made for high drama in the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs

S

By jim mccue | Contributor

ac Joaquin Section Commissioner Pete Saco speaks much like the Vacaville High football team runs its offense — straight forward with no gimmicks. So, after the Bulldogs finished celebrating a 39-35 victory over Folsom in the SJS Division II final on Saturday night at Sacramento State’s Hornet Stadium, Saco delivered a direct message to the final champion to be crowned in the section. “I’m not going to pull any punches,” Saco said as he delivered the section championship banner to the Vacaville team and staff. “Congratulations on being section champions, but this is where it ends.” Saco praised Vacaville (13-1) for its impressive come-frombehind victory over Folsom (11-3) to win its first section title since 2006. But the commissioner was not going to leave the team guessing for another week awaiting word on whether they would represent the section in one of the California Interscho-

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lastic Federation State Championship bowl games on Dec. 1617 in Carson. Speculation and rumor would only grow larger than what had developed over the four weeks of playoff action. Del Oro-Loomis will be the team Saco puts forward as his section’s best candidate for the CIF Division II championship game. Each bowl bid is determined by a vote of the 10 section commissioners in a selection meeting on Dec. 11. And if the various online bowl rankings and predicted matchups hold true, Saco’s job should be an easy one. Though just four weeks ago it appeared it would be anything but. At the start of the postseason, the unofficial State Bowl ratings compiled by CalHi Sports.com presented a clear picture that an SJS team would be representing Northern California in the CIF Div. II bowl game. With the top seven teams in the ratings hailing from the SJS, there was no doubt that Saco’s section would send a team South after the dust settled — the only question was which team would go bowling. Del Oro was the early favorite and never relinquished its

claim to face Southern California’s top Div. II team. The Golden Eagles (13-1), who were the No. 2 seed in the SJS Div. III field, ran the table in the postseason and capped off their run with a 21-7 triumph over top-seeded and undefeated Oakdale on Dec. 2 at Sacramento State. “I think we’ve done enough,” Del Oro head coach Casey Taylor said the night before his team played for the section title. “We’ve played top teams in our section and the state, so we think it’s our time.” The Golden Eagles play in a strong Sierra Foothill League that may be the best top-to-bottom league in the SJS, and have never shied away from scheduling games against some of the strongest programs in the state and beyond. This year, Del Oro recorded nonleague wins over Spanish Springs-Sparks (Nev.), Clovis West-Fresno and Oak Ridge-El Dorado Hills. The only blemish? A 30-27 Week 2 loss to Westlake-Westlake Village, the top-ranked team in California and another likely CIF Bowl candidate. Upload photos and team stats! www.SportStarsOnline.com


Darryl Henick

LEFT: Zach La Bar (11) and Skyler Rand (2) lead a long line of Del Oro-Loomis players enjoying their championship moment after winning the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III final on Dec. 2. ABOVE: Vacaville sophomore running back Curtis Goins (23) rushed for more than 100 yards and two touchdowns in the Bulldogs SJS Div. II-championship win over Folsom on Dec. 3. “We’ve never been afraid to play the best teams around and I think you have to do that to be considered for state,” Taylor added. Del Oro’s section title win cemented its State Bowl bid in the eyes of some observers, but the two remaining section title games would offer more input to the resumes of both Vacaville and Folsom. Folsom — the CIF Div. II bowl’s defending champion — had already vanquished previously-unbeaten Elk Grove (CalHiSports.com’s second-ranked team in the Div. II bowl rankings at the outset of the playoffs). Folsom had reached the SJS final as the No. 6 seed with a pair of playoff wins on the road.

“Our pedigree is as good as any team out there,” Folsom head coach Kris Richardson said after his team’s semifinal victory over Elk Grove. “If we had the opportunity, I know that our guys would represent the section well.” Vacaville also had an impressive resume to offer Saco and the other commissioners before its section final. The Bulldogs beat outof-section foes Valley Christian-San Jose and Deer Valley-Antioch and perennial section power Granite Bay. Vacaville’s only loss was a 33-29 road setback against Marin Catholic back in Week 3. Both Vacaville and Del Oro defeated Gran-

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teams were vying for one spot in a ite Bay, who captured the SJS Div. I fistate bowl game,” SJS Director of nal on Dec. 3, but the Golden Eagles’ Communications Will DeBoard said league rivalry victory over the Grizearly in the week before the section fizlies may have carried more weight nals. “All four teams heading into the with potential decision-makers. finals have good arguments, which Granite Bay defeated Pleasant Groveshows that the regional (playoff) Elk Grove in the section final, damgames that start next year will make aging Folsom’s resume slightly as the things a little easier,” Eagles beat out Folsom for the Delta Saco, who spearheaded the effort River League title with a 48-34 victo initiate the state bowl games which tory. began in 2006, was also the driving Because only section champions force behind making tweaks to the are eligible for state bowl considerformat. Beginning in 2012, one addiation, Vacaville’s win provided the tional week of regional games will be team with the hope that it would at played to more fairly and accurately least be considered. determine the five Northern and “We would love the opportunity,” Southern California teams to advance Vacaville head coach Mike Papadoto the State Bowl games. poulos said shortly after his team’s “The bigger picture to me is that (the section title win. “I would hope that difficulty of the state bowl selection the commissioner would at least give Butch Noble process) shows why we need to have both programs the opportunity to the regional games that start next year,” state their case.” Folsom quarterback Tanner Unfortunately for Papadopoulos Trosin set the state single-season Saco said after the Vacaville victory. “We play some very good football in and his Bulldogs, the case was already passing record with more than our section, and people want these exmade convincingly by Del Oro with 5,000 yards. tra games to get the best teams to state.” its body of work capped by its Div. While the regional games may III title the night before. Whether the case would have been more convincing if Folsom had earned come a year too late for Vacaville, it should not diminish the the section title is not known, but it was clear for weeks that Bulldogs accomplishments this year. “These kids played a Saco was going to have the difficult and thankless task of great game and won a section title,” Saco said of Vacaville’s win. “It’s a great memory and that’s what I think high school, picking a winner. “There has never really been a situation where so many and athletics in particular, are all about.” ✪

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Red Zone

With McHugh leading the way, Bellarmine grabs CCS title and eyes state By mitch stephens | Contributor Mike Janda is like most high school football coaches in this regard. He deplores comparing prep kids to college players. And NFL guys? Forget it. But as the Bellarmine-San Jose coach continued to describe his rugged 6-foot-3, 205-pound senior quarterback Travis McHugh, he found himself finding a connection.

CCS Open Championship The Bells, coming off a tremendous 41-13 win over defending CIF Division I state-bowl champion Palo Alto for the Central Coast Section Open Division title, may indeed be blessed with mini-Tim Tebow. “Travis is just the complete team player — he can throw and run and he even blocks,” Janda said. “He’s a two-year captain and outstanding human being and individual. “ As Janda described McHugh further, he began to chuckle, sensing the comparison, at this level anyway, isn’t far off. “He’s a big, left-handed kid who possesses a great desire to win,” Janda said. “He’s a tough guy, a great leader. So yes, on appearance and character he definitely possesses the same traits (as Tebow).” He actually seems to throw a nicer ball than Tebow, but then the Bells (12-1) don’t pass often. They’ve rushed for more than 4,500 yards and passed for just over 800. In their double-wing, “scrum” attack, McHugh is utilized much more as a runner as he showed off in the victory over Palo Alto. He rushed 20 times for 206 yards and accounted for four TDs as Bellarmine put itself in solid position to be picked as Northern California’s CIF Div I bowl representative. McHugh scored on runs of 54, 4 and 19 yards and completed a 13-yard scoring toss to Jared Vallner just before halftime. He has rushed for 1,370 yards and 21 touchdowns to go along with a nifty 119 quarterback rating, while completing 55 of 88 for 840 yards and 11 TDs with just three interceptions. “He throws a real nice ball and he runs that offense very, very well,” De La Salle defensive coordinator Terry Eidson said. “He not only is a load to tackle but he leads the sweep with blocks. The kid is obviously no wimp.” McHugh showed that in the Bells season-opening 26-23 heartbreaking double-overtime loss to De La Salle. He rushed for 89 yards and two touchdowns. Bellarmine largely outplayed De La Salle in that game and almost ended the Spartans 211-game unbeaten streak against Northern California. A missed extra point at the end of the first overtime cost Bellarmine the victory. “It hurts but we can’t dwell on it,” McHugh said after the game. “We have a lot to build on and it’s going to make us stronger.” He proved to be a prophet as the Bells dominated arguably Northern California’s strongest league, the West Catholic Athletic League, with a 7-0 record. McHugh was picked as Player of the Year in the star-stud-

Bob Larson

Bellarmine-San Jose quarterback Travis McHugh dives into the end zone for a touchdown during the first of two overtime periods against De La Salle-Concord on Sept. 2. The Bells lost 26-23, but have since won 13 in a row. ded league. He was joined for specialty awards by teammates Connor Lambert (Most Valuable Offensive Lineman), Joe Gigantino (Most Valuable linebacker) and Tim Crawley (Co-Most Valuable Utility). Crawley, an elusive and quick 5-9, 170-pound senior, rushed for 1,370 yards and 16 touchdowns. Bellarmine’s defense is stout, having allowed just 149 points against some of the Bay Area’s most potent offenses. Asked if he thinks his team should be selected to go to a bowl game, McHugh didn’t hesitate. “Nothing is guaranteed,” he said. “I think we deserve a bid just because of what we have done this season. We lost to De La Salle in double-overtime. They’re still ranked as one of the best teams in the state. It’s not up to us to decide. If they call our number, we’ll be ready to go.” A 4.18 student, McHugh is getting Ivy League looks but look for more offers to come in as his numbers increase. Last year he threw just 80 times and ran for 560 yards and eight TDs. He’s more than doubled all of those. “We expected bigger things from him this year and he delivered,” Janda said. Said Serra-San Mateo coach Patrick Walsh: “They kid is just a leader and a winner. He’s seems like a coach’s dream.” ✪

(Travis McHugh’s) a big, left-handed kid who possesses a great desire to win. He’s a tough guy, a great leader. So yes, on appearance and character he definitely possesses the same traits (as Tim Tebow).” Bellarmine-San Jose coach Mike Janda

Mitch Stephens is a national columnist for MaxPreps.com.

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The Night the Pirates

stole the show After 20 years, Pittsburg’s 1991 section title victory remains one of most famous in state history By mitch stephens | Contributor

The most memorable moment of Chris Shipe’s memorable high school football career was taking a knee. This was no obligatory, run-of-the-mill, end to a football game mind you. This was on the floor of an NFL stadium — the Oakland Coliseum — on a damp and muddy field at the end of long and strategic and bitterly fought game. “Frankly, I was trying to settle our guys down,” Shipe said. “They were all celebrating early. I didn’t want anything stupid to happen.” Shipe, a long and lean and talented Pittsburgh High quarterback, took the snap, took the knee and the history of prep football in the Bay Area would never be the same. On the 50th anniversary of Pearl Harbor — Dec. 7, 1991 — Pittsburg ended the 34-game win streak of De La Salle-Concord with a 3527 North Coast Section championship-game victory. Remarkably, 20 years later, De La Salle not only hasn’t lost another NCS playoff game since, but it hasn’t lost to a Northern California opponent period — a span of 222 games with 220 victories and two ties. The Spartans go for their 20th straight NCS title Dec. 10 back at the Oakland Coliseum, this time against San Ramon Valley-Danville. Former De La Salle players and current coaches say that the loss ignited a firestorm within the program, leading directly to the start of a national record 151-game win streak and at least six mythical national championships. “It all started there,” said Patrick Walsh, De La Salle’s star junior tailback on that 1991 team and current head coach at Serra-San Mateo. “That was the most pain I ever felt in my life after a game and none of us wanted to feel it again. Pittsburg pushed us to the brink.” That wasn’t the Pirates’ intent. It was simply to bring back another NCS title to Pittsburg following titles in 1980 and 1985. And the fact it was in an NFL stadium 32

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against the despised private-school Spartans, who were just beginning to gain national attention, was icing on the cake. Very sweet icing. “I remember the final seconds winding down and seeing the utter joy of my teammates, my friends, my coaches,” said Shipe, now the head football coach at Los Medanos College in Pittsburg. “It’s a vision I’ll never forget.” It’s the same sight then Pittsburg coach Herc Pardi shares and has carried with him throughout a successful football and baseball coaching career. He coaches both now at Clayton Valley-Concord. “It was more of a feeling really,” he said. “The feeling of an entire community coming together and seeing it through. I can still see the faces of my family, the team’s family, the long-time Pittsburg fanatics. “Quite frankly, it was one of the greatest sports moments in a city rich in sports tradition.”

NO DE LA SALLE MYSTIQUE As De La Salle’s Northern California and NCS streak grows, the more famous the event and the game becomes. Like member of the 1972 Miami Dolphins — the only team to go through an entire NFL season undefeated at 17-0 — who openly root against unbeaten teams in order to keep their record alive, do the Pirates from 1991 find themselves rooting for De La Salle? “I wouldn’t say I root for them,” Shipe said. “Especially against Pittsburg. But I don’t root against them either.” Aaron Alatorre, a starting receiver on the 1991 squad, who currently teaches special education at Pittsburg and is an assistant football coach at LMC, said he roots for De La Salle out of the area. “I would love their streak to end against a Pittsburg squad,” he said. “Or someone out in East County.” That doesn’t appear likely any time soon.

The gap has widened largely since the days when Alatorre, Shipe and a talented, spirited and most of all fearless group of Pirates played. The De La Salle mystique had not yet infiltrated Pittsburg’s psyche. Not by a long shot. The seniors on the team, including running backs Percy McGee and Derrick Huffman, receiver Mike Gargalikis, two-way lineman John Buxton, linebackers Anthony Shipe (Chris’ cousin) and Dyshun Beshears, and receiver Greg Quesada, had defeated De La Salle at lower levels. Handily even. McGee, Chris Shipe, Beshears and Buxton all had successful college careers at Humboldt State. Quesada earned a scholarship to Washington. And the team’s top player was a junior, offensive tackle and defensive end Regan Upshaw, who starred at Cal and in the NFL. Sophomore linebacker Charlie Ramirez and defensive back Leif Hall were other standouts. Besides all that talent, Pardi had just replaced Larry Rodriguez as head coach after leading the Pirates JV team to back-to-back 10-0 seasons. “That team was very talented and we knew it,” De La Salle defensive coordinator Terry Eidson said. “They were also very well coached. We knew they were going to give us problems.” Pardi had superb assistants, starting with defensive coordinator Jerry Halfrich (now at American River College), along with Lenny Davis, Sam Quinones and Joe Aliotti, brother of current Oregon defensive coordinator Nick Aliotti. Joe Aliotti, one of Pittsburg’s all-time great quarterbacks who starred at Boise State, is now an assistant at De La Salle and school Dean. He wanted the head coaching job Rodriguez vacated, but Pardi was a proven commodity. The brain-trust worked together to perhaps outcoach one of the most famous staffs in high school football. “We knew what we wanted to do,” Pardi

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FAR LEFT: The excitement and energy of the postgame celebration, described by then-Pittsburg coach Herc Pardi as “an incredible buzz,” is perfectly encompassed in the team photograph taken on the field and in front of the Oakland Coliseum scoreboard. Pardi said the celebration lasted well into the night once the team returned to Pittsburg. “It was a magical night,” he concluded. (Courtesy of the Pardi Family.) AT LEFT: Pittsburg’s Eric Alston (3) hurdles over a punishing block thrown by a teammate. Alston scored the game’s first touchdown on a 25-yard reverse. It marked the first time De La Salle had trailed all season. (Courtesy of The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley).

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said. “And we had kids with the talent and know-how to get it done.”

‘SEE YOU IN DECEMBER’ Most of all, they had a swagger. The Pirates lost a 28-16 game to De La Salle during the regular season, “but we knew we could play with them,” Pardi said. And Pardi knew De La Salle knew. After the first game when the two coaches shook hands, Pardi told De La Salle coach Bob Ladoucer: “See you in December.” Said Eidson: “They could have easily beaten us the first game. They just missed on three bombs or they would have gotten us.” When the Pirates walked into the Coliseum that night, Alatorre said the game was theirs. “We all sprinted over to the base paths,” he said. “I remember us all talking about this is where Rickey Henderson steals bases. We were relaxed. In the moment. “I remember when De La Salle took the field. They just looked stiff. Business like. I felt right then that we had them.” Pardi had a good hunch at halftime. Shipe, who completed 29 touchdowns to just two interceptions all season according to Pardi, had fired a pair of crisp TD passes to tie the game at 21 heading into intermission. “All our guys sprinted into the locker room,” Pardi said. “They couldn’t wait to get ready for the second half. And they sprinted out of the locker room too. I remember thinking to myself, ‘My God we’re going to win this thing.’ “   Added to the enthusiasm was a secret plan devised by Aliotti. It was basically the spread offense — new to the world back then — that Aliotti had brought with him from Boise State. The Pirates had practiced it all week and it caught the Spartans off guard. “They ran a five receiver set and we hadn’t seen it that year,” said Eidson, who was in his first season as defensive coordinator. “It definitely caught us by surprise.” The short passing game led to a long drive and touchdown to put Pittsburg up 28-21 and after a Walsh touchdown and missed extra point, one of the most famous plays in Bay Area prep football transpired.

SEA OF BLACK AND ORANGE Driving to what looked to be a go-ahead touchdown, De La Salle quarterback Ali Abrew, pressured by Beshears, threw a short pass that was intercepted by McGee at the Pittsburg 21. The All-East Bay running back, inserted on defense to make a big play, sprinted down the De La Salle sideline 79 yards for the score to go up with 2:15 left. He was escorted most of the way by Upshaw. “As soon as I scored I knew we had won the game,” McGee told Neil Hayes in his book about De La Salle entitled “When the Game Stands Tall.” That’s funny, because Chris Shipe didn’t. 34

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Butch Noble

Chris Shipe, the 1991 Pittsburg quarterback, is now the coach at Los Medanos College.

He ran to the dog pile in the end zone and one-by-one pulled players up to get off the field. All signs of a future coach. “I didn’t want to get a penalty and give them good field position,” Shipe said. “They still had plenty of time.” De La Salle completed a pair of passes to future NFL great Amani Toomer on the next drive, but Beshears sacked Abrew, forced a fumble and Upshaw recovered, setting up Shipe’s memorable taking of the knee. More Pardi recollections: “Gatorade bath,” Pardi said. “Hysteria. I remember my wife (Roxanne) running onto the field and hugging me. I asked her how she got on the field because the security was so tight. She said, ‘I told them they can arrest me but right now I have to congratulate my husband.’ ” The celebration followed in the stands. Pardi said close to 20,000 showed up that night, making it the largest Coliseum crowd for an NCS event. “There was a sea of black and orange everywhere,” he said. “There was an incredible buzz.” And the bus ride back to Pittsburg? “A dream,” Pardi said. “Phenomenal.” At the end of the bus ride was a giant reception at school. “The town didn’t sleep much,” Pardi said. “We all hung out. It was a magical night.” It lasted more than one evening, Alatorre said. “We celebrated for two or three weeks,” he said. “TV stations showed up. There were parades in town. It was just a completely different feel in town. It was such an ordeal. “Funny, because it’s 20 years later and it’s still an ordeal.” ✪ Mitch Stephens is a national columnist for MaxPreps.com.

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Heart of the matter: Defibrillators need to be more commonplace

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creening for cardiac disease prior to participation in athletics is a hot topic these days. The American Heart Association has a 12-element recommendation for inclusion in any pre-participation physical examination of young athletes. Included are a personal and family history (verified by a parent or guardian), and physical examination that encompasses listening for a heart murmur, checking blood pressure and heart rate. It is not recommended to perform an electro cardiogram on all athletes. With a 10 percent false positive/false negative rate, the accuracy of the testing often leaves a family with unneccessary anxiety, and can just as frequently not catch the cardiac issue. In Italy, where there is a national health care system, all young athletes are required to have an EKG prior to participation (a trend that may ultimately hit U.S. shores). However, Italy still has an incidence rate of 1in 200,000 sudden cardiac deaths of young athletes. Ironically, the rate of sudden cardiac death in the U.S. is no different. So given the expense and lack of any significant decrease in incidence rates, currently EKG’s are not recommended as a component of the pre-participation physical examination. In the past year alone, Children’s Hospital and Research Center Oakland has received eight young athletes who have suffered cardiac arrest. Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs) revived all of them. Only one continues to suffer a lasting impact of being stricken, due to a delay in receiving the life saving intervention of defibrillation. Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs) are important life saving devices that should be readily available in all public places where athletics occur. Unfortunately they have not yet become as common a sight as an exit sign, or fire extinguisher. It is the one item that no one wants to ever use; yet everyone should have access to. The AED is designed for simplicity, with verbal instruction and pictures to guide the user through the action of saving a life. The problem remains, however, that we as a society have not yet reached the tipping point of having the expectation of finding an AED in any building, field of play, or sporting venue we may find ourselves in. The good news is we are not very far off. The public’s awareness is rising, with CPR classes covering the use of AEDs, news and print media covering the issues, and the universal sign of a heart with a lightning bolt becoming more common place. Still, more advocacies are needed and it is the public’s pressure on institutions that wins the money to make the AED a pervasive sight. That advocacy is the responsibility of us all. ✪

Health Watch Bruce Valentine

Bruce Valentine is a physical therapist assistant for the Sports Medicine For Young Athletes, a division of Children’s Hospital Oakland with a facility also located in Walnut Creek. If you have questions or comments regarding the “Health Watch” column, write the Sports Medicine For Young Athletes staff at Health@SportStarsOnline.com.

Aspire Pilates

Pilates workouts benefit any athlete, male or female

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By erik stordahl | SportStars

erhaps the biggest myth when it comes to Pilates is the notion that it’s meant solely for women. That couldn’t be farther from the truth. Meet Antone, a wrestler, swimmer, boxer and track athlete. Obviously a multi-sport athlete, Antone practically lives in the gym. But because of the intensity of his workouts and the extreme physicality of the sports he plays, he has sustained severe knee injuries over the years, tearing his ACL, MCL, PCL and Medial Meniscus. He has also had very “upset” shoulders including torn rotator cuffs, a detached clavicle, and a torn bicep tendon. In addition he has had painful leg injuries that have included pulled hip flexors and groin muscles. Ouch. “I enjoy pushing myself to the limits,” Antone said. “When it comes to training and exercise.” Through his many years of athletic injuries, Antone has tried modality after modality to keep him out of pain and performing on the field/ring/mat. “I have had many coaches, trainers, and physical therapists,” Antone said. “But the one thing I could’ve used the most was Pilates. Too bad I thought it was only for girls.” The look on Antone’s face was priceless when Tonya Amos, founder of Aspire Pilates, revealed that Joseph Pilates was a

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wrestler and boxer. “I feel my athleticism would have greatly benefited,” Antone said. “And it would have helped me from getting injured.” Antone was dragged to Pilates by his girlfriend. He liked that all of the exercises combined strength, flexibility and balance, which made for a streamlined, powerful workout. “Before I discovered Pilates, I would do thousands of ab exercises to strengthen my core, which gave me a great six pack but not a stable core,” Antone said. “With Pilates I learned how to really engage my hamstrings which increased overall strength and speed. “I also realized that I was not stretching important muscle groups which inevitably led to injury. Tonya’s keen eye is able to see unhealthy movement patterns in just a short time. I never thought Pilates could be so beneficial.” The beauty of Pilates is that it’s for athletes of all walks and disciplines. It can maximize your body’s potential even if you’re already incredibly strong and fit like Antone. “What Antone found with Pilates was a deeper level of full body strength derived from the power of his core and stability of his joints,” Amos said. “Strength that he had never before realized was possible. “Combine all of that and you get a faster, stronger and more agile Antone with even more “weapons” in his athletic arsenal.” To learn more about Pilates or to sign up for a class, check out www.aspirepilates.com. ✪ December 8, 2011

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tee2green

Cal women’s coach brings her passion for golf to The First Tee of Oakland

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s a non-profit, the success of The First Tee is largely dependent upon a Board of Directors. We have been very fortunate over the past several months to add new members to the board and even more fortunate that those members’ backgrounds and experiences are very diverse. Recently we celebrated the recruitment to our Board of one of the all-time great women’s collegiate golf coaches, Nancy McDaniel — the founding coach of the Cal women’s golf team who is responsible for directing one of the most highly-regarded golf programs in the country. We are so excited to have Nancy serving on the program committee. Nancy’s role will be to provide guidance and goal assistance to program participants, as well as to provide on-going golf education and training for our volunteer coaches. We had a chance to pose some questions to Nancy about how she got her start in golf, what she has learned from the game and what she hopes to contribute to The First Tee of Oakland. ■ How did you get your start in golf? My start in golf came as an 8-year old in Oregon. Volunteer parents would take us out on a four-hole course and wait patiently for each junior to finish each hole. Looking back, patience was the key word for both player and parent. I played in high school, beginning as an individual at a school that did not sponsor a girls golf team and was quickly motivated to start one. I found out quickly that it takes parents to get you out on the course and friends to keep you there. ■ What has golf taught you about life? What has golf NOT taught me about life? There are so many life lessons. As a junior golfer, it taught me full accountability. As a collegiate player, it taught me persistence. As a young professional, I learned passion. ■ What made you decide to become a Board member with The First Tee of Oakland? Many of my dear friends are active Board members of their respective First Tee Chapters, and this has always piqued my interest. To be asked to be a part of something that is changing lives in youth in your town is a privilege. ■ What has your experience with The First Tee of Oakland been like? When two young people walked up to the first practice I was observing, and when they took off their hats, extended their hands to say, “Hello my name is. . . “ as they each shook my hand boldly, I about fell down. It was then I realized how impactful this program can be. ■ Are there similarities in coaching college students versus the First Tee kids? I wish all my student-athletes had the opportunity to go through the First Tee program. I think it may have helped with confidence and dealing with adversity, and there is no question it would help with basic introductions and respect. The ones that were with the First Tee have a great perspective on sport and life. ■ Given the diversity of the players at TFTO, what might you say with regard to golf becoming a more diverse sport? I love that through The First Tee we are seeing so much more diversity in golf. Breaking the barrier from it being a country club sport to a regular-person’s sport really reminds me of Scotland. When you play there, it’s just what the people do. It’s not special, and you are not special because you play. It’s a way of life — a means to be outside and enjoy camaraderie with friends and family. ✪

First Tee Files April Kenyon

First Tee Files is a rotating column featuring administrators of four Bay Area chapters of The First Tee — Contra Costa, Oakland, San Jose and Tri-Valley. April Kenyon is the executive director for the The First Tee of Oakland. Check out your local chapter by visiting one of the following websites: www.TheFirstTeeContraCosta.org, www.TheFirstTeeOakland.org, www.TheFirstTeeSanJose. org and www.TheFirstTeeTriValley.org

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Your first race: The basics for competing in your debut triathlon W elcome to the fun part, the race! Your first triathlon is all about having a good experience. You’ve put in all the training, you are ready physically, now enjoy your special day. You should not expect to do everything right on your first race, so make it fun and memorable.

Choosing Your First Race If this is your first triathlon season, choose a fun race where some of your friends or people you know will also be competing. This will give you something positive and fun to look forward to on race day, and will help lessen your anxiety.  You may want to choose a race close to home, so all your friends and family can come watch you, or a race where you have volunteered.  For training purposes, choose a race at least three months before you begin your season, so you have enough time to build a base, train well, and be ready physically.   

Goals and First Race Strategy Goals are important for your training, and your race. Most people think the only goals that exist are time goals, but, especially for your first race, how you race and how you feel during and at the end of the race are more important. Just like practices, you should feel like after each part of the race you can do the next part. There are different types of race goals. Your goals will

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areas of improvement you can improve easily. For example, not sitting during transition one.  

Managing Race Anxiety

differ based on your race experience, your athletic background, and how many races you’ve participated Liz Elliott in.   If this is your first triathlon, your goal should be pace well, and finish strong. I usually suggest to my first time racers to build into each section. What that means is to start at 10 percent of your top speed at the beginning of each section, and work up to 80 percent.  The better you are at each section, the faster you will reach and hold 80% within that part of the race.   By setting pace, overall feel during and after each part, and being prepared in transition, your training and racing will be more interesting and your times will drop without directly trying.  If this is your first set of triathlons, your first race may be to finish and pace well. After that race, write a race report. Write down your entire experience, while noting areas you did well, and areas you could improve.  For your second race, choose the low hanging fruit, the

Most triathletes, especially for those experiencing their first triathlon, will have some anxiety surrounding preparation — what to do the week of, during the race morning and race itself. Anxiety is totally normal, even for seasoned racers. It is good to feel some anxiety or nervousness before racing, as that is fueled by adrenaline (the juice that gets you going). But you don’t want anxiety to take you over. If you have followed your training plan, and stuck to training patterns, you are each prepared, and whatever happens is what happens.   Overall, have a great time!  Enjoy your first race, it will only happen once.  Ask any triathlete, your first race will be something you’ll remember forever.  When you cross the finish line, you will be a triathlete.  ✪ Liz Elliott is the head coach of the Tri-Valley Triathlon Club based in Dublin. Liz specializes in preparing beginner triathletes for their first race(s). Liz just completed her second Ironman in August, bettering her performance in every aspect of the race. Contact her at liz@trivalleytriclub.com. Find the first four installments of TriSteps in issues #28, 31, 33 and 35. All can be accessed at www.SportStarsOnline.com.

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Eric Cressey’s

seven reasons

why pitchers need rest

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cuff strength. oday I want to share an abridged version of “7 4. They need to get their Reasons Why Pitchers shoulder and elbow range of Shouldn’t Throw Year Round,” motion back. by Eric Cressey. Cressey is one of What you need to know is that the top strength and conditioning significant eccentric stress can coaches in the world, and one of lead to tissue shortening. Immy go-to resources when it comes mediately after a pitching outing, to training this population. To pitchers lose an average of 9.5 delearn more about Eric and to read grees of shoulder internal rotation the complete article go to www. and 3.2 degrees of elbow extenericcressey.com Tim Rudd for IYCA sion — and these losses persist at There are those who insist 24 hours after throwing baseball pitchers don’t need time 5. They need to “dissipate” off from throwing. I couldn’t eccentric stress. disagree more. If I already have a guy whose arm is workI’m sure this will rub some folks the wrong ing at a deficit for 8-9 months of throwing, way, but I can’t say that I really care, as most the last thing I want to do is beat him up for of those individuals can’t rationalize their the other three months with the same kind perspectives outside of “guys need to work of volume and stress. on stuff.” I, on the other hand, have seven 6. They need to allow any undetected reasons why baseball pitchers need time off low-grade injuries to heal. from throwing: Old, low-level injuries are less likely to reach 1. They need to lose external rotation to threshold if you give them some downtime gain anterior stability. and work on redistributing training stress. Just going on year-round throwing By strengthening the rest of your body in the programs in hopes of increasing external off-season, you’re dramatically reducing the rotation seems like a good idea on paper. It’s demands on your rotator cuff with throwing. actually a terrible idea in the context of inju7. They need a chance to prioritize other ry prevention. Pitchers should intentionally competing demands. lose a few degrees of external rotation each There are other things that need to be prioffseason, as it affords them an opportunity oritized at this time, and year-round throwto improve their stability. ing is an especially tough pill to swallow 2. They need a chance to get their cuff when you know that throwing is working strength and scapular stability up. against many of the very qualities — rotator At the end of a season, the strength of cuff strength, scapular stability, mobility, and the rotator cuff and scapular stabilizers is tissue quality – that you’re trying to establish. significantly reduced. Having dealt with The lack of downtime from throwing is esmany of our players for up to five offseasons, pecially problematic in younger populations, I have a unique appreciation for how each as they are skeletally immature and weaker. responds differently to not only the stress of I firmly believe that pitchers need the ball the season, but also to arm care programs completely out of their hands for at least two that we initiate at season’s end. months per year, preferably continuously. ✪ 3. They need an opportunity to do

Training Time

dedicated manual resistance rotator cuff exercises. Ask anyone who has worked with throwers for any length of time, and they’ll always tell you that manual resistance exercises are the single best option for improving rotator

Tim Rudd is an International Youth Conditioning Association specialist in youth conditioning (level 3), speed and agility (level 2), and nutrition specialist (level 1). For more information on anything you read in Training Time, email him at tim@fit2thecore.com.

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camps + clinics BASEBALL/SOFTBALL Golden Era Baseball Based in the East Bay, we offer several instructional-based programs as well as 9U thru 18U Club Teams. We are currently taking sign-ups for our Hitting Classes. Please see our website for full details: www. GoldenEraBaseball. com. The Pitching Center We develop baseball players to their full potential. The Pitching Center has grown to become the Total Player Center (TPC), a full service baseball and softball training academy. Ageand skill-specific programs are available for students ages 8-high school. Info: 925-416-1600, www. thepitchingcenter. com. SportForm Based in Concord, SportForm provides individual and team instruction in baseball, softball, lacrosse. Highly trained professionals provide accelerated and advanced skills clinics. Prepare to Perform! Info: 925-459-2880. All American Softball Girls of all ages welcome. Check into our six-week softball improvement program for all ages. Info: 916-3741907, www.softballschool.com. BASKETBALL Bladium Triple Threat Academy Alameda’s Bladium Sports & Fitness Club hosts multiple hoops camps for ages 6-12. Designed for players of ALL skill levels. Registration: AlamedaSales@bladium.com, 510814-4999; www.bladium.com. Mike Allen Sports Learn the basics of basketball, sharpen your skills and improve daily at the Ballin’ Ambassadors basketball clinics! Hosted by MIke Allen Sports in the South Bay, registration is easy. Go to www.mikeallensports.com to reserve your spot. 408-279-4123. CHEER CheerGyms.com We offer the best clinics in California! Customize your clinic to fit your needs. Whether basic stunting techniques or working on twist cradles out of one

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leg stunts, we take your team to the next level! Info: 866-685-7615, www. CheerGyms.com. East Bay Sports Academy Recreational, competitive athletes benefit from training with the best coaches. Our 10,000-square-foot facility is clean and bright, with the newest equipment. Info: 925 6809999, www.EastBaySportsAcademy. com. EQUESTRIAN Kelly Maddox Riding Academy Develop new friendships with other horsecrazy kids. Weekly activities include learning horse colors, markings and breeds; art and crafts; a farrier demonstration and human horse show; bareback riding and more! Info: 925-575-4818, www. KellyMaddoxTraining.com. Franklin Canyon Stables Based in Martinez, we provide two covered arenas and easy access to trails. Whether beginning rider or experienced equestrian, we have a place for you. Instruction in horsemanship on the ground and in the saddle, all while having fun. Info: 925-2281801; www.kimshorsetraining.com/ franklin_canyon.html. Castle Rock Arabians Activities for tweens and teenagers, where we build team spirit through various team activities on horseback. Visit the ranch by appointment. Info: 925-933-3701, www. castlerockarabians.com. Earthquake Arabians Fall and Christmas Break camps are around the corner for Earthquake Arabians! Horsin’ Around Fall Camp: Nov. 21-23. Christmas Break Camps: Dec. 1923 and Dec. 26-30. Registration is OPEN. Log on to www. earthquakearabians.com for more info. 925-360-7454. FITNESS Aspire Pilates Dramatically increase core strength, power, flexibility, balance, focus and joint stability, while preventing injury. Aspire prides itself on helping propel athletes to the next level by

December 8, 2011

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Reserve a spot now for a workout with San Ramon Fast Pitch Softball and San Ramon Baseball. Spots are limited for the 2012 spring season. Leagues for 9U to 14U. Go to www. sanramonfastpitchsoftball.com or www.sanramonbaseball. com to learn more. addressing muscular imbalances, helping athletes increase body awareness, correcting faulty body mechanics, and accessing untapped strength. Info: 925-680-4400, www. AspirePilatesCenter.com. Fit 2 The Core As a Youth Conditioning, Speed/ Agility and Nutrition Specialist with the IYCA, Fit 2 The Core Training Systems Boot Camps offer an innovative approach to getting young athletes back on the field post-rehabilitation, and continuing the process by progressing their bodies to handle what they must endure on the field or court. Info: 925-639-0907, http:// f2cbootcamps.com. TransForm FX At TransForm FX Fitness Boot Camp, we believe that parents can take better care of their kids when they take care of their own health and fitness. This is the reason we have designed our adult fitness boot camp workouts to fit your busy lifestyle. Each boot camp workout is carefully designed to help you burn fat and increase your cardiovascular endurance in less time. Info: 925-289-8042; www. transformfxfitness.com. Walnut Creek Sports & Fitness We offer more than 70 group classes per week. Members also enjoy our heated pool, sauna, spa and steam room. Massage, skincare and chiropractic services are available. Call us today for your free one week pass! Info: 925-932-6400, www.wcsf. net. ENRICHMENT Dianne Adair Enrichment Programs We offer a wide variety of enrichment programs for your child during the school year. Activities include: Homework help, 4th

& Up Club, art and crafts, science, sports and games. Info: www. dianneadair.org. E.Nopi and Palm Academy Concentration is on early literacy, critical thinking, problem solving, social understanding, physical coordination, creativity, cooperation and self control. Programs serve children from infancy to preschool, kindergarten, and through 12th grade. Students learn at their own pace. Locations: Fremont, 510-9799794; Newark (E.Nopi), 510-7936674; Pleasanton, 925-461-6284. FUZE Fit For A Kid! FUZE is a privately-held, DOJcertified, youth-only health club and curricula modeled after the principles of the Positive Coaching Alliance. FUZE enhances athletic development, socialization and selfesteem. Info: 408-358-7529; www. fuzefit.com. GOLF Dave DeLong Junior Golf Camp For advanced and beginning junior golfers, and designed for golfers 7-15. Camps include a 4 to 1 ratio of students to teachers. Safety is top priority, as are player development and enjoyment. Boundary Oak Golf Course, Walnut Creek. Info: 925997-3683; www.delonggolf.com. Coach Rick Golf Learn to play on the course, where it matters. Golfers of all ages can sign up. For more info, call 510-9176442; www.ThePersonalGolfCoach. com. The First Tee - Contra Costa The First Tee is a youth development program for boys and girls 7-18. Participants learn about golf and life skills and values inherent to the game, rules and etiquette. Instruction occurs at Diablo Creek Golf Course in Concord. Info: 925-686-6262, Ext. 0, angela@thefirstteecontracosta. org; www.thefirstteecontracosta.org. The First Tee - Oakland The First Tee of Oakland has delivered The First Tee Life Skills Experience to more than 262 participants. Each receives a minimum of 12 hours of instruction over an 8-week period. Instruction is at three Oakland courses: Metropolitan Golf Links, Lake Chabot GC and Montclair GC. Info: 510-352-2002; www.thefirstteeoakland.org.

The First Tee - San Jose The First Tee of San Jose develops youth throughout Silicon Valley, through the game of golf. Participants learn to appreciate diversity, resolve conflicts, build confidence and set goals. We welcome participants ranging from second to 12th grade. Scholarships available. Info: 408288-2973; www.thefirstteesanjose. org. The First Tee - Tri-Valley The First Tee of the Tri-Valley offers The First Tee Life Skills Experience Classes seasonally, for ages 7-17, at the Pleasanton Golf Center on the Alameda County Fairgrounds. Info: 925-462-7201, www. TheFirstTeeTriValley.org. LACROSSE Atherton Lacrosse Our lacrosse camps are designed for boys and girls ages 5-14, who are beginner or intermediate players. Our group of coaches and staff are leaders in the lacrosse community. Info: 888-526-3330, www. AthertonLacrosse.com. Sportform Based in Concord, Sportform provides individual and team instruction in baseball, softball and lacrosse. Highly trained professionals provide accelerated and advanced skills clinics. Prepare to Perform! Info: 925-459-2880, www.sportform.co. MARTIAL ARTS United States Karate Systems USKS offers adult and children’s programs, kickboxing fitness, mixed martial arts. Providing excellence in martial arts instruction and services for the entire family. 925682-9517; www.usksmartialarts.com. MOTORSPORTS Keigwins@theTrack We conduct motorcycle schools and practice events (“track days”) in the West at famous race tracks. For experienced motorcyclists looking to improve skills and build confidence. Riders provide their own motorcycles and protective gear. Keigwins@theTrack takes care of everything else. Info: www.keigwin. com; 650-949-5609.

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December 8, 2011

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camps + clinics Umigo Learn passing techniques, cornering techniques, throttle & breaking techniques, advance seat position, kart operation, kart control, real racing, and improving your lap times. Racers must be at least 10 years old and at least four feet, 10 inches tall. Two- and four-day camps are available. Info: www.umigoracing.com. OUTDOOR SPORTS Bear Valley Mountain Soccer, Archery, Tennis, Climbing, Cycling ...

If there’s an outdoor activity you enjoy, there’s a good chance you can do it Bear Valley Mountain. Info: www. bearvalley.com. University of Surfing Instructor Matt Cole offers lessons/camps in Pacifica. 650-359-1425, mattcolesurfs@hotmail.com; www.universityofsurfing.com. SOCCER Heritage Soccer Club The Pleasant Hill/Martinez-

based competitive soccer club welcomes players ages 8-18. Top-flight coaching staff with experience spanning years in the high school and college ranks teach new skills and help hone existing ones. Info: www.heritagesc. com. SWIMMING/DIVING Walnut Creek Swim Club WCSC is a recreational team, celebrating its 50th anniversary. Led by the experience of coach Brad Hoy, the staff is the finest in the area. WCSC believes in finding the healthy balance between competition and family fun. Sponsored by the City of Walnut Creek, Info: 925-766-5664, www. walnutcreekswimclub.org. Sherman Swim School We are a Lafayette swimming and diving school celebrating our 50th year. Our yearround schedule allows children and adults to learn, retain, and improve their swim skills with little interruption. Info: 925-283-2100, www. ShermanSwim.com. VOLLEYBALL Pacific Rim Volleyball We offer several skill-based camps and clinics, including setting camp, hitting camp and an allskills camp. Campers will be evaluated and placed in a group that challenges their level of play. Registration for beach volleyball is going on now as well. Info: www. pacificrimvolleyball.com. U.S. Youth Volleyball League We’re the leader in developing and maintaining youth volleyball leagues for boys and girls ages 7-15. With an emphasis on positive reinforcement, we seek to build confidence and self-esteem in each child. Info: 1-888-9887985; www.USYVL.org. MULTI-SPORT City of Concord Skyhawks Sports Skyhawks Sports & the City of Concord team up to provide safe, fun and skills-focused sports camps for ages 4-12. Camps range from soccer to lacrosse to our popular multi-sport camp where kids sample three different sports (Soccer, Basketball, and Baseball) in one camp. Info: 925-671-3404; www.concordreg.org.

Advertiser Index ❒❒ A A A Northern California, Nevada & Utah..................10 ❒❒ Aabco Printing..........................................................43 ❒❒ Army National Guard Recruiter.....................................5 ❒❒ Aspire Pilates Center..................................................41 ❒❒ Back Forty B B Q.........................................................36 ❒❒ Bay Area Baseball Camps...........................................39 ❒❒ Big C Athletic Club......................................................15 ❒❒ Big O Tires....................................................................2 ❒❒ Bob Larson Sports Action Photography......................43 ❒❒ Cheer Gyms..................................................................6 ❒❒ Children’s Hospital And Research Center.....................26 ❒❒ Club Sport Renaisssance ............................................20 ❒❒ Community Youth Center...........................................43 ❒❒ Crowne Plaza.............................................................43 ❒❒ Diablo Car Wash & Detail Center.................................41 ❒❒ Diablo Rock Gym........................................................39 ❒❒ Diablo Trophies & Awards...........................................39 ❒❒ E Teamsponsor...........................................................47 ❒❒ Earthquake Arabians..................................................41 ❒❒ East Bay Sports Academy...........................................34 ❒❒ Excellence In Sport Performance................................30 ❒❒ Fit 2 The Core..............................................................29 ❒❒ Garaventa Enterprises................................................19 ❒❒ Heavenly Greens........................................................37 ❒❒ Home Team Sports Photography................................41 ❒❒ Kaiser Permanente.......................................................7 ❒❒ Kinders B B Q................................................................3 ❒❒ Lone Tree Golf Course.................................................41 ❒❒ Mc Coveys..................................................................29 ❒❒ Mike Allen Sports................................................. 48, 31 ❒❒ Mountain Mike’s Pizza................................................12 ❒❒ Niles Personal Fitness.................................................39 ❒❒ Rocco’s Pizza...............................................................42 ❒❒ Rockin Jump...............................................................21 ❒❒ Scandia Family Center................................................43 ❒❒ Simply Selling Shirts..................................................39 ❒❒ Sport Clips..................................................................13 ❒❒ Sports Stars Magazine................................................43 ❒❒ Star Sports.................................................................30 ❒❒ Sutter Urgent Care......................................................48 ❒❒ The First Tee Of Contra Costa.......................................41 ❒❒ The Golf Club At Roddy Ranch....................................36 ❒❒ The Mt. Diablo Memory Center - Sport Concussion Program.....................................................................30 ❒❒ Unflappable: The Whitney Reed Story........................41 ❒❒ Usks Concord.............................................................43 ❒❒ Velocity Sports Performance......................................42 ❒❒ Walnut Creek Sports & Fitness....................................38 ❒❒ West Coast Jamboree.................................................27

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December 8, 2011

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impulse SSM liked the style of Alex Martin’s Urban Cutz & Clothing ad (last issue #36) so much that we set up an Impulse shoot. It turned into a “twofer” and included the store’s next door neighbor, Metro Skateshop. Here’s all the trendy gear you need for the kids on your holiday list. Ahmad (left): He’s the senior point guard for Ygnacio Valley High. Haircut by Ivan. Flag Snapback Pink+Dolphin hat $45; Play Cloths hoodie $145; DTA tee $25; Gourmet shoes $60; G-Shock watch $200 ... Chris (right): He is YV’s sophomore forward. Haircut by Jerron. Pink+Dolphin Waves beanie $35; Rocksmith jacket $112; 9five eyewear $80; DTA te e $25; Flüd watch $100; Creative Recreation Capri’s $125. Go YVHS Warriors! ... Justin (inset): He is wearing Metro’s skater gear. KREW hat $18.99; Metro tee $18.99; 9; Brixton vest/hoodie $89.99; Ambiguous Pants $64.99; NIKE SB backpack $50; Real board $46.99; Emerica shoes $59.99. Urban Cutz & Clothing, 1106 Contra Costa Bl., Pleasant Hill. (925) 708-3832. www.UrbanCutz.biz. Metro’s next store. www.MetroSkateShop.com

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*Name____________________________________________________________ Address (optional) _____________________________________________________________ *City/State ___________________________ *Zip______________ Phone (optional) __________________ E-mail: _______________________________________________ Check the most appropriate option for each. All information held in confidence Are you: ❏ Female ❏ Male ❏ Married ❏ Single ❏ Age 12 or below ❏ 13 to 19 ❏ 36 to 45 ❏ 20 to 25 ❏ 46 to 55 ❏ 26 to 35 ❏ Over 55 ❏ Student ❏ Full-time employed ❏ Part-time employed ❏ Self-employed ❏ Not employed ❏ Retired Number of people living in your home: Male: Age(s) __ / __ / __ / __ / __ Female: Age(s) __ / __ / __ / __ / __

Home ownership: ❏ I own my home ❏ I rent/lease ❏ I live with my parents Education: ❏ Pre High School ❏ In High School ❏ High School Grad ❏ Some College ❏ College Grad ❏ Post annual household income ❏ Less than $35,000 ❏ $35,001 to $50 000 ❏ $50,001 to $75,000 ❏ $75,001 - $100,000 ❏ $100,001 - $150,000 ❏ above $150,000 Do you own: A mobile/smart phone? ❏ No ❏ One ❏ Two or more A credit card? ❏ No ❏ One ❏ Two or more A laptop/tablet? ❏ No ❏ One ❏ Two or more A car? ❏ No ❏ One ❏ Two or more Social Media Do you use: ❏ Faceboook ❏ Twitter

In which sports do you regularly participate? Check all that apply ❏ Baseball/Softball ❏ Basketball ❏ Cheer/Gymnastics ❏ Endurance: Swim/ Bike/Run ❏ Equestrian ❏ Football ❏ Golf ❏ Hockey ❏ Lacrosse ❏ Motorsports/BMX/ Skateboarding ❏ Outdoor/Adventure/ Snow board/Ski/ Mountaineering ❏ Rugby ❏ Self Defense/ Wrestling/Fencing ❏ Soccer ❏ Tennis/Racquet sports ❏ Volleyball ❏ Other _____________ Which sports do you watch regularly (check all that apply) High School Sports ❏ In person ❏ On TV Teen League Sports ❏ In person ❏ On TV College Sports ❏ In person ❏ On TV Pro Sports ❏ In person ❏ On TV Jr. Sports (younger than high school) ❏ In person ❏ On TV What other sports publications do you regularly read? ❏ Pro sports magazines ❏ College sports magazines ❏ High School sports magazines ❏ Endurance magazines (swim, bike, run) ❏ Outdoor / Adventure magazines Do you primarily read these magazines: ❏ In print ❏ Online

Do you participate in games or tournaments as a coach? ❏ routinely ❏ somewhat often ❏ occasionally Team Parent? ❏ routinely ❏ somewhat often ❏ occasionally Player? ❏ routinely ❏ somewhat often ❏ occasionally Golf Do you consider yourself an: ❏ avid golfer ❏ Sunday golfer ❏ Occasional golfer How often do you golf? ❏ weekly ❏ monthly ❏ annually How much do you spend per year on Greens Fees $___________ Equipment $___________ Endurance: (Swim, Bike, Run) How often do you participate in Running, Biking &/or Swimming/Diving? ❏ routinely ❏ somewhat often ❏ occasionally Types: ❏ Fun runs (5k/10k) ❏ Marathons ❏ Triathalons About SportStars Magazine Please rank each of the following sections in order with ‘1’ as your favorite, etc...: (rank as many as you can) __ First Pitch (Editors Opening Column) __ Behind the Clipboard (Coaching Advice Column) __ Health Watch (Medical / Health Advice Column) __ Locker Room (Quick & Fun: Rapid Fire/Digits/Top 5) __ Game Day (Breaking Game Coverage) __ AAA SportStars of the Week (Honoring teen athletes) __ Training Time (Training Tips & Techniques) __ Club Scene (News & Coverage of league play) __ Features (In-depth stories on players and teams) __ In the Paint (Basketball Coverage - seasonal) __ Red Zone (Football Coverage - seasonal) __ Extra Bases (Baseball/Softball Coverage - seasonal) __ Tee2Green (Golf) __ TriSTARS (Endurance: Swim/Bike/Run, Outdoor & Adventure) __ Camps & Clinics (Resource) __ Impulse (New Products) __ 24/7 (Events Calendar) __ Photo Finish (Last Page Photo) How often do you read SportStars Magazine? ❏ Every issue ❏ 3 out of every 4 issues ❏ 1 or 2 of every 4 issues How would you classify yourself as a SportStars Magazine reader? ❏ I read it cover to cover ❏ I read most of the articles ❏ I read one or two articles each issue Do you prefer to read SportStars Magazine... Print Edition ❏ Daily ❏ Every issue ❏ Monthly Internet Edition ❏ Daily ❏ Every issue ❏ Monthly How long do you spend reading each issue: ❏ More than one hour ❏ 30 minutes to one hour ❏ Less than 30 minutes How many others read your copy of SportStars Magazine? ❏ 1 ❏ 2-4 ❏ 5-7 ❏ 8-10 ❏ more than 10

Do you keep your copies for future reference? ❏ Always ❏ Often ❏ Sometimes Where do you pick up your copy of SportStars Magazine? ❏ School ❏ Restaurant ❏ Retail store ❏ Gym/health club ❏ I subscribe ❏ Other Name of location ___________________________________ How often do you visit our website? ❏ Daily ❏ Weekly ❏ Monthly ❏ other Would you say reading SportStars Magazine influences your decision to: ❏ Play sports ❏ Buy sports equipment/goods ❏ Work out/stay healthy ❏ Eat healthy ❏ Watch sports Would you say you use SportStars Magazine to choose: ❏ Where to play sports ❏ Where to watch sports ❏ Where to select a camp or clinic ❏ Other _________________________________________ What subjects do you think there should be more coverage of in SportStars Magazine? 1. _______________________________________________ 2. _______________________________________________ 3. _______________________________________________ Contest ends Dec. 15, 2011. No purchase necessary to win or enter. Return this survey to SportStars Magazine c/o Reader Survey Prize, 5356 Clayton Rd., Ste. 222, Concord, CA 94521 or fax to (925) 566-8507.


Del Oro-Loomis defensive back Russell Smith (26) goes airborne into the end zone to intercept a pass intended for Oakdale’s Justin Martin during the Sac-Joaquin Section Div. III championship on Dec. 2. PHOTO BY James K. Leash

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CA Issue 37 Dec. 8, 2011  

Nor Cal High School Basketball Preview

CA Issue 37 Dec. 8, 2011  

Nor Cal High School Basketball Preview

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