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Don’t get on the mat with luke sheridan unless you like headlocks. 16

splish-splash: all-city meet results. 15 Jim Cooper/photo

sportstars gets some new toys with which to play 29 First Pitch .................................5 SportStar of the Week ..........6 Wally’s World ..........................7 Locker Room ..........................8 Health Watch ....................... 19 Training Time ........................ 22 Advertiser Index ................. 23 Twenty-Four7 ....................... 23

Bob Larson 4

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Tee2Green ............................ 26 July 22, 2010

ON THE COVER Goalkeeper Andrew Ferber by Bob Larson. Contact Bob at larsonpic.@aol.com

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The summer of free agency

A PHoNE 925.566.8500 FAX 925.566.8507 EDiToriAl Editor@SportStarsMag.com Editor Chace Bryson. Ext. 104 • Chace@SportStarsMag.com Contributors Bill Kolb, Erik Stordahl, Mike Wolcott, Dave DeLong, Mitch Stephens Photography Butch Noble, Bob Larson CrEATiVE DEPArTMENT Art@SportStarsMag.com Production Manager Mike DeCicco. Ext. 103 • MikeD@SportStarsMag.com PUBlisHEr/PrEsiDENT Mike Calamusa. Ext. 106 • Mike@SportStarsMag.com ADVErTisiNG & CAlENDAr/ClAssiFiED sAlEs Sales@SportStarsMag.com Account Executives Mike Wolcott Ext. 109 • MikeW@SportStarsMag.com; Patrick McCormick Ext. 102 • Patrick@SportStarsMag.com; Erik Stordahl • EStordahl@ SportStarsMag.com (Calendar, Marketplace sales) Hometeam network Mary Stewart, Peter Trekteris and Michelle McEuen, 925.827.4686 • hometeam@sportstarsmag.com rEADEr rEsoUrCEs/ADMiNisTrATioN Ad Traffic, Subscription, Calendar & Classified Listings info@SportStarsMag.com • Deb Hollinger. Ext. 101 • DisTriBUTioN/DEliVEry Mags@SportStarsMag.com Distribution Manager Butch Noble. Ext. 107 • Butch@SportStarsMag.com iNForMATioN TECHNoloGy John Bonilla CFo Sharon Calamusa • Sharon@SportStarsMag.com Office Manager/Credit Services Deb Hollinger. Ext. 101 • Deb@SportStarsMag.com BoArD oF DirECTors Dennis Erokan, CEO, Placemaking Group Roland Roos, CPA, Roland Roos & Co Susan Bonilla, Contra Costa County Supervisor Drew Lawler, Managing Director, AJ Lawler Partners CoMMUNiTy sPorTsTArs™ MAGAZiNE A division of Caliente! Communications, LLC 5356 Clayton Rd., Ste. 222 • Concord, CA • 94521 info@SportStarsMag.com www.SportStarsMag.com

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YOUR TICKET TO BAY AREA SPORTS ADMIT ONE; RAIN OR SHINE This Vol. #1, June 2010 Whole No. 4 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.

Read Me. Recycle Me.

s all the NBA free agency madness unfolded earlier this month, it was suggested to me by my devoted-NBA-, Kobe Bryant-hating-, theleague-still-owes-the-Kings-a-championship fan of a brother, that I should write a column about it. I promptly pointed out that, obviously, a column about the NBA wouldn’t really make sense to the type of audience SportStars aims to reach. You know, seeing as how we’re a magazine focused on teenage athletes. His response: “Well, there’s free agency everywhere.” Then, a few days later, it occurred to me that he was right. (I haven’t told him yet. He’s a middle child and assumes he’s right most of the time anyway, even if nobody cares to listen.) But yeah, he sparked an idea. There are high school kids who have been dealing with free agency this summer. Several, actually. But the two who first came to my mind were a pair of De La Salle football players, Dylan Wynn and Blake Renaud. With respected scouting site Rivals.com ranking Wynn and Renaud among the top 30 in the nation at their positions — Wynn is No. 27 at strong defensive end, and Renaud is No. 25 at inside linebacker — the two boys have more than a handful of college programs making their finest pitch in hopes of attaining the players’ services. Technically, Wynn and Renaud are unrestricted free agents. (They are, however, obligated to finish out their Spartans careers this fall. Much to the chagrin of every offensive coordinator in the East Bay Athletic League.) Between them, they have 14 different scholarship offers. Wynn, who is by far the more gregarious and outgoing of the defensive tandem, has had a much more active recruiting season. Over the past five months, he has visited (officially, and unofficially) as many as 12 schools. And these aren’t just ho-hum schools, either: Nebraska, UCLA, Cal, Stanford, Notre Dame, Oklahoma State, Oregon, Oregon State, Washington, Washington State, and Penn State. Each school will typically roll out its own red carpet, too. “I actually was issued an itinerary at Oklahoma State,” Wynn said. The majority of his visits followed the same routine of meeting and talking to the coaching staff, spending one-on-one

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FIRST PITCH Chace Bryson Editor

Chace@ SportStarsMag.com (925) 566-8503

time with the head coach and the position coach, getting tours of the athletic and academic facilities, and — among the most important parts for a growing, 6-foot-3, 235-pound lineman — a few meals. “At Oregon, the dinner was crab legs,” Wynn said. “It was amazing. I was going ‘What!?’ It was ridiculous.” But what really impressed Wynn were the schools which not only felt comfortable for him, but whose coaching staffs could give a precise picture of what they envisioned for him once he arrived. One school’s coach even sat down and broke down game film, showing Wynn exactly where he would be on the field and what his roles would be. After a few of these visits, Wynn felt pretty confident about the whole process. “I thought it was going to be pretty easy to figure out what I wanted, but it’s actually a lot harder,” he said. And part of that comment has a lot to do with Renaud. Over the past couple years of leading the Spartans, the two have become close friends. Renaud doesn’t have as many offers as Wynn, but there’s at least one that overlaps — Oregon State. Perhaps this scenario sounds a bit familiar? Wynn, who has already taken a visit to Corvallis, Ore., will “refresh his memory” by traveling up there with Renaud at the beginning of August. Renaud will also take a visit to Boise State around the same time. “Every once in awhile we talk about it all,” Renaud said. “But we haven’t talked about it that much because it’s all we hear from everybody else.” The “everybody else” includes recently graduated De La Salle teammates, Terron Ward and Tyler Anderson, each of whom have joined the Beavers. Anderson will walk-on this season, and Ward will enroll in January under a grey shirt scholarship. Wynn will definitely admit that the thought of playing alongside his friend has given him pause. However, he won’t let it be the overall determining factor. “I have five really close friends and Renaud is one of them,” Wynn said. “So it’d be pretty sick if I could go play with him. We have to see how it turns out, though. We have to pick the school that’s best for each of us.” Expect both players to make their choice before the end of August, though probably not on national TV. ✪ July 22, 2010

SportStars™

5


of the week

Jason Agopian

powered by:

Deer Valley . Volleyball

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July 22, 2010

After leading the Wolverines to a Bay Valley Athletic League championship and a trip to the North Coast Section Division I semifinals, Agopian has spent his summer playing for the Cobra Kai 17U team of the Diablo Valley Volleyball Club. That’s a good thing — both for Jason and the rest of Cobra Kai. Recently, the 6-foot, 6-inch middle hitter combined with De La Salle outside hitter, Brendan Byrne, to power Cobra Kai to an 8-3 record and 13th place finish at the USAV Junior Nationals in Austin, Texas. sportstars: What was the key to you guys winning your final six matches in Austin? Jason Agopian: We started out slow...And we had worked so hard leading up to the tournament, that we didn’t want all that to be a waste. sportstars: It was your first visit to Texas, so is it true that everything else is bigger there? JA: (Laughing) I’d have to say, yeah. A few things were actually bigger. sportstars: You gave up a promising high school football career to focus solely on volleyball. What led you to that choice? JA: Volleyball was just more fun. sportstars: What’s your favorite element of volleyball? JA: The teamwork and the excitement. The intensity of the matches. If you watch a good VB match, they get intense. JAsoN’s QUiCK HiTs: Batman or spider-man: Spider-man Best eatery in Antioch: Chipotle Favorite athlete: Reid Priddy, U.S.A volleyball

honorable mention

addie green Swimming for the Larkey Sharks at the All-City Swim Meet, the Las Lomas junior won the 100-yard IM and was second in the 100 freestyle. She was also part of a first-place 200 freestyle relay team and a second-place 200 medley relay team.

connor cabral Swimming for the host Walnut Creek Swim Club, the Acalanes sophomore had two second-places at the All-City Swim Meet (100 IM, 50 freestyle). He also was third in the 50 butterfly. He swam two relays, taking second in the 200 medley.

destinee beesley The Antioch freshman was the winning pitcher when she struck out five batters in two innings as Antioch defeated Clayton Valley 14-2 in the District 4 Little League Junior All-Star softball championship.

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Mustang Stampede tramples ordinary numbers

T

here are certain numbers in sports that speak louder than words, standing like monuments to the historical feats they represent. You know, like “714.” Or “56.” Or “Bengie Molina hit for the cycle last week, which means he hit a triple.” (Technically not a number, but it should be.) Last week, while on routine assignment in my adopted home town of Danville, where I personally managed to lower the entire town’s annual mean income by 34 percent last year (but that’s another story), I came across a set of numbers that puts all of the above to shame. It’s all because of Mustang Soccer and its upcoming Mustang Stampede boys and girls tournaments. If there’s ever been a bigger, more economic-impacting, non-professional series of athletic events in the East Bay in my lifetime, I’d like to hear about it. And what’s amazing to me is, by and large, we don’t hear about it. Youth soccer usually gets about as much attention as squash or ping-pong, appearing in print with all the frequency of a Bengie Molina triple (five in the past 12 years, and thanks for asking). Not in SportStars. This event is getting its due, and we’re going to do it in the most economical way possible, because if there’s anything we could all use right now, it’s a better economy. Presenting “The Mustang Stampede: By the Numbers.” 202: The number of teams competing in the girls tournament Aug. 6-9. 118: The number of teams competing in the boys tournament Aug. 20-22. 320: What you get when you add 202 and 118. 15: Average number of players per team. 4,800: Total number of players who will participate. 1: Approximate number of parents per player attending the tournaments. 9,600: Total number of players and parents who will play in or watch the tournaments. (Intermission: That’s almost 10,000 people — nearly two-thirds of whom are coming from outside the Bay Area — descending upon my little town and the surrounding area. For a soccer tournament. Think they might spend a little money while they’re in the area? Back to the numbers:) 9,601: Number of extra copies of “SportStars” we’ll be distributing for the tournament. (We didn’t want to run the risk of ending up short.) 20: Number of hotels between Concord and Pleasanton listed on the Mustang Soccer website for out-of-town teams. 12: Number of said hotels already sold out for all tournament dates as of July 19. (If the Marriott doesn’t have a blimp shaped like a soccer ball hovering above its tower the rest of the month, well, it should.) 10,000,000: Estimated value, in dollars, of the Mustang Soccer Complex at 4680 Camino Tassajara. (For comparison’s sake, this is about $2 million more than George Steinbrenner paid when he bought the Yankees in 1973.) 22: Number of fields that will be needed to accommodate all of the games. 12 (at least): Number of kids involved with the Mustang soccer program who currently represent the United

States on national-level teams. 36: Number of years the Mustang Soccer League has been in existence. And if you ask for one example of why this has blossomed into something so special, it doesn’t take boys coaching director Fred Wilson long to come up with an answer. “It’s all about giving the kids an experience that is second to none,” said Wilson, who has been involved with Mustang Soccer since 1989. “The winning comes out of that. We’re just trying to create good citizens, and soccer is the vehicle we use.” He did point to two kids in particular who have carried that “good citizens” tag to the extreme. In 2007, Garrett Weiss (now at USC’s Marshall School of Business) and his brother Kyle (Monte Vista High) founded a non-profit group called FundaField, which raises money to build soccer fields in Africa. In just three years, the group has raised more than $100,000 and built seven fields. “You just look at what some kids are doing in this world ...” Wilson said, shaking his head in amazement at the brothers’ work. He didn’t finish the sentence. He didn’t need too. In a month where youth soccer rules the valley, the numbers put up by the Weiss brothers are the most impressive of all. ✪ Mike Wolcott is a big Bengie Molina fan, means no disrespect and readily acknowledges he probably couldn’t beat him in a footrace.

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WALLY’S WORLD Mike Wolcott MikeW@ SportStarsMag.com (925) 566-8500 Ext. 109

July 22, 2010

SportStars™

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WHERE’D HE GO? Diondre Borel, Freedom football, 2007 In the late summer of 2004, Freedom High football coach Kevin Hartwig watched as a frustrated athlete tried to play wide receiver during early-season workouts for the Falcons. So he decided to make a change. “He came, pulled me aside, handed me the football and said why don’t you work on throwing it a bit,” said Diondre Borel, the aforementioned athlete. Hartwig wasn’t suggesting a radical position change — Borel had played quarterback for the freshman team the year before — but it was a decision that paid off big for both player and coach. Borel is now a senior at Utah State where he’s being billed by multiple publications as a key player to watch, not just in the Western Athletic Conference, but among NCAA quarterbacks throughout the country. Most recently, he was named to the Manning Award watch list for 2010 — a list that aims to include the 30 quarterbacks in the country. Ten finalists get named in late-November and the winner is announced at the conclusion of all bowl games. Ryan Ta lbot “It’s good to hear my name out there and finally getting recognized somehow,” Borel said by phone. “I’m trying to get my team out there as well...Everybody here feels we have the talent and we just have to put it together for every game.” Borel, who already owns six marks in the Utah State record book, will have a chance to put himself and Utah State on the map right away this season. On Sept. 4, he and the Aggies will travel to perennial power Oklahoma. “I’ll be ready for that game,” Borel said. “We’ve played some big programs before, but this might be the best one. Our team is better now, too, which should make it more fun.” The game is set to be televised by one of the ESPN networks, and one can be assured that Hartwig will be tuned in. — Chace Bryson

Junior Olympic events that just didn’t make the cut With the first-ever Youth Olympic Games looming on the horizon (August 14-26), we thought it would be worth speculating what events were close to being included among “The 26 Sports” but didn’t quite make the grade for Singapore 2010. 1. soCCEr. Enough already. Wait. What? They included soccer but called it football? Groan. 2. lAWN DArTs. Seriously. Those things are dangerous. You’ll shoot your eye out, kid. 3. UNDErWATEr syNCHroNiZED AlGEBrA. Because, well, isn’t algebra hard enough already? Let the kids enjoy their summers, for Pythagoras’ sake! 4. TrACK AND FiElD. Really? Isn’t this, like, the premier event at the Olympics? Whose idea was that? What do you mean they have Track and Field? They call it “Athletics?” That’s just ridiculous. 5. FisHiNG. We already have “Canoe-Kayak,” “Rowing,” and “Sailing.” How many sitting-in-boat events do you really need? — Bill Kolb

HE SAID WHAT?!?

“We had a talk that night. We acknowledged th we made some at mistakes and n ow the best we (13th place). So can do is we said 13 is ou r new No. 1, an d they went out and d id it.”

MAKING SENSE OF: LITTLE LEAGUE SUMMERS?

Diablo Valley Volleyb all Club coach Stev e Siegmann, below, started the USAV Bo talking about his Cob ys’ Junior Nationals ra Kai 17U team w by winning just two hich six to finish 13th ou of its first five match t of more than 75 te es. It then won it’s las ams. (Find out mor t e on page 14).

Do you remember Summer? Idyll? Endlessly long, hot, lazy days followed by afternoons filled with pickup baseball games or maybe an honest-togoodness organized Little League practice? Do you remember that practice? Kids from your neighborhood (or thereabouts), descending upon the local diamond for a couple of hours of around-the-horn and BP and maybe the occasional cup-check (gotta wear the protective equipment, lads); inside jokes that everyone got, and knowing exactly who could make the play and who would come up just short. Do you remember that one kid on your local nine who did everything better than you? The one who was SURE to play in the bigs some day, he was so good? The thing is, you were always playing with kids you knew. Some you liked. Some you didn’t. But they were, for better or worse, ‘yours.’ These were the guys with whom you rode bikes in the circle or on the empty lot or at the park, with whom you played tag and hide-and-seek and Whiffle ball. Some you loved; some you loathed, but you knew them all (and where they lived, and their moms, and how good the snacks were at their house, and…) and they knew you. They were like your baseball family. We ask because, as the frenzy of the Little League World Series approaches and we see miniature county all-star teams cropping up nationwide, it occurs to us that much of that pastoral (admittedly nostalgia-enhanced) camaraderie has fallen by the wayside under a ‘Travel Ball’ system that emphasizes commitment to a particular sport, commitment to a particular team, commitment to drive all over the western United States (and parts of Canada) in pursuit of better competition. Commitment? When we were playing youth baseball, we could barely commit to this week’s best friend or tomorrow’s afternoon snack. You want us to commit to a summer of commuting outside the city, county or state every weekend? Can’t we just play seven innings and grab a free sno-cone? We get that these young stars-of-the-future are being groomed and provided with the tools they need to “make it” someday. But wouldn’t it be nice if we could let them, just this once, enjoy this day? — Bill Kolb

RANDOM ACTS OF FACTNESS The youngest player on the U.S. Women’s National Water Polo team is still in high school — Monte Vista High. Maggie Steffens hasn’t even played her senior year with the Mustangs and she’s already scored a decisive goal in an international final. She took — and buried — the final shot of a penalty shootout with Australia in the Women’s FINA World League Super Final in La Jolla on July 3. Allen Lorentzen

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July 22, 2010

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July 22, 2010

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9


At another level A handful of Mustang Soccer standouts are suiting up for U.S. youth national teams

I

Bob Larson

Andrew Ferber, 14, of the Mustang Hotspurs slides to deny a shot on goal during a match at the Mustang Soccer Complex in Danville on July 17.

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SportStars™

July 22, 2010

By EriK sTorDAHl | Contributor

t’s safe to say everyone knows who LeBron James is. Once he made The Decision, a self-promoting ESPN broadcast on July 8 where he announced the next NBA team he would play for, King James elevated his status from basketball great to polarizing public figure. Andrew Ferber is no LeBron James. Comparing one of the most talented basketball players in the world to a 14-year-old soccer player isn’t even apples and oranges. It’s more like oceans and puddles. That doesn’t mean Ferber isn’t experiencing some of the same things James did when he was in high school. Like James, who played on national AAU teams and traveled all over the coun-

try showcasing his skills to thousands of salivating coaches and scouts, Ferber is doing much of the same as a goalkeeper for the U15 Mustang Hotspurs and member of the U14 Boys National soccer team. That’s pretty much where the comparison begins and ends. Ferber is a quality talent, no doubt. He could probably coast his way to a starting spot on the Dougherty Valley High varsity team as a freshman, acquire league honors and end up playing NCAA Division I soccer all without breaking a sweat. But he’s taking the high road. He accepts his talent but acknowledges he needs to get better. “If anyone pushes Andrew, it’s himself,”

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“If anyone pushes Andrew, it’s himself. He’s the kind of guy who will come out and do the goalkeeper training, then come out and work just as hard in our regular training.”

Bob Larson

Fabian Van de Graf, who will be coaching Ferber when the Mustang Soccer Club hosts its Mustang Stampede boys tourney

Andrew Ferber, who will be a freshman at Dougherty Valley High in the fall, has been training as a goalkeeper for the past five years. said Hotspurs coach Fabian Van de Graf, who will be coaching Ferber when the Mustang Soccer Club hosts its Mustang Stampede boys tournament beginning on Aug. 20. “He’s the kind of guy who will come out and do the goalkeeper training, then come out and work just as hard in our regular training.”

Lance Glossup, the boys goalkeeper director for Mustang Soccer, has been training Ferber for the past five years. He currently coaches 20-30 young goalkeepers and can validate Ferber’s desire to improve. “(Ferber) definitely pays attention,” Glossup says. “If you tell him to do something, he’ll do it at 110 percent.”

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It’s that kind of workhorse mentality that sheds ego and earns the respect of those around him. “He’s a great teammate,” Van de Graf remarks. “He’s the kind of kid who helps out a lot, which is what you want in a goalkeeper.” There aren’t many days when Ferber isn’t

standing in goal. “I practice two times a week with the Hotspurs,” explains Ferber. “Then normally I train once a week with the Academy team, then also once a week with goalie training.” It may be time-consuming, but it’s Ferber’s choice. It’s also Megan Kufeld’s choice.

July 22, 2010

SportStars™

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“My dream would be to play in England or somewhere in Europe but that’s a farfetched goal. If that doesn’t happen then somewhere in college, Division I hopefully.” Andrew Ferber Kufeld, who will be in goal for the U18 Mustang Earthquakes during the girls Stampede beginning Aug. 6, plays for the U17 Women’s National Team as well. “When I’m not playing (soccer), all I think about is playing soccer,” Kufeld confesses. Kufeld, a senior at Washington High School in Fremont and committed to the University of Washington, has been playing on the national squad since she was 14. She’s had the privilege of playing against other countries like Costa Rica and Portugal. Stephanie Amack, a Dougherty Valley sophomore and member of the U16 Mustang Blast, experienced the same perk when she traveled to Denmark earlier this month with the U17 Women’s National team. Playing in the Nordic Cup, they defeated Germany 2-0 in the final. Amack scored the first goal of the match in the 34th minute. “It felt really good to score that goal,” Amack says. And if you think making the team is just like being a little league all-star, guess again. Amack explained the long, arduous process involved in cracking the national squad’s roster. “First, you get selected for your district. Then you get selected for the state, followed by a regional pool and then regional team. Finally, you get picked for the national team.” Of course anyone would be thrilled to play for such a prestigious squad comprised of a Who’s Who of America’s top amateur soccer players. “I was really happy just to make the regional team,” Amack confesses.

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STAMPEDE WHAT: Boys and girls soccer tournaments consisting of kids ages 6 through 19. WHEN: Girls tournament is Aug. 6-9; boys is Aug. 20-22. WHErE: Twenty-two fields throughout the Danville-Alamo area, headquartered at the Mustang Soccer facility at 4680 Camino Tassajara near Blackhawk. Sycamore and Osage are among the larger facilities hosting games. WHo: 202 girls teams and 118 boys teams from all over the West Coast. For MorE iNForMATioN: Visit www.MustangSoccer.com Ferber, Kufeld and Amack are just a few of roughly a dozen Mustang soccer players who play on the national level. It’s a distinction that none of them are truly satisfied with. There’s always another goal. Another level to achieve. “My dream would be to play in England or somewhere in Europe but that’s a farfetched goal,” Ferber remarks. “If that doesn’t happen then somewhere in college, Division I hopefully.” Should he end up playing at the collegiate level, then he will have accomplished something even LeBron James did not. ✪ Contact Erik at ErikS@SportStars Mag.com

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I WILL NOT BE PART OF GENERATION XXL.


A spike in success: Two local volleyball clubs shine at nationals By CHACE BrysoN | Editor Sometimes, even the best teams are forced to alter the goals they set. Even if it means going for 13th place. After a promising start to the USA Volleyball Boy’s Junior National Championships in Austin, Texas, earlier this month, the Diablo Valley Volleyball Club’s Cobra Kai 17U squad suffered three straight losses. The third loss — a grueling 21-25, 25-22, 16-14 loss to WAVE Spalding of Southern California — had eliminated them from any chance of making the championship flight of the tournament’s top 12 teams. Once determining that 13th place was the best it could do, the Cobra Kai squad set out to make it happen. The first match following the loss to WAVE was against a club out of Cincinnati. Cobra Kai rolled to a runaway victory (25-16, 25-13), and the momentum picked up from there. “We came back and smoked the next team and I think it was huge for us,” Cobra Kai coach Steve Siegmann said. “They realized (in that match) that they were a pretty darn good team.” Led by the hitting duo of Brendan Byrne (De La Salle High) and Jason Agopian (Deer Valley), and the libero play of Matthew Peretto (St. Patrick-St. Vincent), the Diablo Valley Club team rolled to six straight wins and finished the tournament with an 8-3 record to rank 13th out of more than 75 national-caliber teams. “Five of the 11 guys were at (nationals) for the first time,” Seigmann said. “It was good to see us to do so well with that amount of inexperience. It also makes us that much better for next year.” Cobra Kai wasn’t the only local club to excel at the national level. Just one week prior to Diablo Valley’s success in Austin, the Xceleration Volleyball Club of Pleasant Hill had its 18U girls team finish tied for fifth in the National Division of Girl’s Junior Nationals in Reno, Nev. “This group was just all about teammates and chemistry,” Xceleration coach Andy Schroeder said. “They were great friends who were tough and were able to overcome when they had to.” Mary Diamantidis (Miramonte), who was named to the all-tournament team, combined with Meghan Cooney (Carondelet), Morgan Borch (Las Lomas) and Jillian Matsuoka (Berean Christian) to lead the Xceleration to a 5-1 start to open the tournament. They finished 6-3, dropping their final match 25-14, 25-22 to a Cincinnati-based club. “We got off to a slow start in the first game and just never recovered,” Schroeder said. “But for a team in this area, a top-five finish, we were pretty happy about that.” Filling out the Xceleration roster, and contributing to the team’s success, were Dana Balding (St. Mary’s), Gabby Hands (Benicia), Emma Jackson (Albany), Megan Kehoe and Molly Kennedy (Bishop O’Dowd), Morgan Larmour (Heritage), and Alex Shurtz and Anisa Smith (Campolindo). ✪ 14

SportStars™

July 22, 2010

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Jim Cooper

a

Donald Sherwood, 16, swims for Rudgear Estates during the All-City Swim Meet at Heather Farm Park in Walnut Creek.

swim

through the

park

Walnut Creek Swim Club hosted its annual All-City Meet on July 10-11 at Heather Farm Park. Here are the first-place ‘A’ division finishers and times from the 13-14-year-old and 15-18-year-old age groups. All event distances are in yards. The Adam Szmidt Memorial-Pacific Swimming Long Course Junior Olympics meet was hosted by Orinda Aquatics on July 15-18. For results and images from that meet, visit www.SportStarsMag.com. Girls 13-14 100 IM: Brittany Heng (Dewing Park) 1:07.25 50 freestyle: Brittany Heng (DEWPK) 25.86 50 butterfly: Brittany Heng (DEWPK) 28.33 200 medley relay: Scottsdale SC, 2:04.15 50 backstroke: Emma Lyon (Rancho San Miguel) 31.24 50 breaststroke: Megan Shone (SSC) 33.35 200 freestyle relay: Woodlands, 1:52.27 Boys 13-14 100 IM: Connor Thompson (Rudgear Estates) 1:00.23 50 freestyle: Matthew Horner (RUD) 23.93 50 butterfly: Connor Thompson (RUD) 26.05 200 medley relay: Rudgear Estates, 1:52.25 50 backstroke: Connor Thompson (RUD) 27.03 50 breaststroke: Sam Toriggino (WH) 31.58 200 freestyle relay: Rudgear Estates, 1:37.99 Girls 15-18 100 IM: Addie Green (Larkey Sharks) 1:06.96 100 freestyle: Laura Woods (Woodlands) 55.55 100 butterfly: Erin Delaporta (Walnut Heights) 1:01.35

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Jordan LeBrecht

Competitors leave the starting blocks at the opening of a 15-18 year-old girls event at the All-City Swim Meet on July 10. 200 medley relay: Woodlands, 2:01.69 100 backstroke: Paris Wood (RSM) 1:04.13 100 breaststroke: Rachel Maneggio (WCSC) 1:11.03 200 freestyle relay: Larkey Sharks, 1:47.49 Boys 15-18 100 IM: Ryan Sevilla (Indian Valley) 57.77

100 freestyle: Ryan Sevilla (IVST) 50.55 100 butterfly: Kevin Choi (RUD) 54.58 200 medley relay: Rudgear Estates 1:48.25 100 backstroke: Ryan Sevilla (IVST) 56.20 100 breaststroke: Jeremy Buck (DEWPK) 1:01.87 400 freestyle relay: Rudgear Estates, 3:31.37

July 22, 2010

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SingledOUT

De La Salle’s Luke Sheridan prepares to represent the U.S.A. in the Youth Olympic Games

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By Bill KolB | Contributer

uke Sheridan is a singular individual. This statement is not intended to mean that he is exceptional, unique, especially talented or a standout — some of the common usages to which that word is put. Sheridan is all those things, mind you: a gifted wrestler who placed third in the state at 171 pounds at the 2010 California Interscholastic Federation championships in March. That came hard on the heels of Sheridan, a junior in the 2009-10 season, netting his second individual North Coast Section title while leading De La Salle to its secondstraight Division I team title as well as its second-straight overall NCS team finish. The Spartans outpaced second-place Granada by a final team point total of 270.5-166.5 — the largest difference between first and second place in the team championship since James Logan topped Mission San Jose 261.5-132.5 in 1995. The Spartans’ rout came thanks in large part to Sheridan’s stellar, four-pin run through the brackets. Dating back to 1991, the 270.5 points are the most scored by any team in the overall NCS tournament. That’s all well and good. But in this instance Sheridan’s singularity means something a bit more straightforward. Singular. As in one. Only. The guy. King of the mountain. El numero uno honcho.

Bob Larson photos

De La Salle senior Luke Sheridan, top, works out with training partner (and older brother) Tyler at the Community Youth Center in Concord. Both brothers will attend the Youth Olympic Games in Singapore in August, Luke as a competitor and Tyler as an assistant coach.

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See, when he isn’t busy tossing opponents around on the freestyle mat, Sheridan is hard at work tossing them around on the Greco-Roman mat (*editor’s note: same mat). So busy, in fact, that he won a junior national championship in Fargo, N.D., on July 20, and was recently tapped as the only (see: singular, above) American wrestler to be selected to participate in the Greco-Roman events at the first-ever Youth Olympic Games in Singapore in August. There are two American freestylers and one American woman who are also Singapore-bound. For the wrestling novices out there, the primary difference between freestyle and Greco-Roman (or Greco, which was part of the first modern Olympics in 1896 and has been included in every Games since 1908) is that in Greco, participants may not grasp or hold their opponents below the waist, or grab, hook, or trip their opponents legs in any way. This places an emphasis on upper-body strength and throws. Sure, sure, you say. Sheridan’s high school and club coach, Mark Halvorson, is the U.S. Wrestling

July 22, 2010

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coach for Singapore. Of course he picked his guy. Well. Yeah. Of course he picked his guy — because his guy dominated the field at the Pan-American qualifier in Monterrey, Mexico, in May. After pinning Luis Arias of Venezuela in the first round, Sheridan, the No. 5 seed in the tourney, then proceeded to stick third-seeded Alfonso Antonio Leyva Yepez of Mexico and No. 2 seed Kevin Mejia Castillo of Honduras for the championship at 85 kilograms (187 pounds).The win and advancement comes despite the fact that Sheridan is a bit undersized in his weight class. Sheridan’s ‘walking around’ weight outside of competition is right around 189 pounds. And as any mat-head will tell you, you drop 5-10 pounds in a hurry when you’re ramping up for a big competition. Meaning Sheridan, rather than needing to drop weight, generally tips the scales well under what his opponents are sweating and cutting to make. “I’m the small guy,” Sheridan said. “But I hope to make up for it with talent and skill.” “He’s pretty undersized,” Sheridan’s brother, coach, and biggest supporter, Tyler Sheridan said. “But I promise he’s strong enough. It’s going to be hard for you to find a 17-year-old in this world stronger than Luke.” And Tyler would know. In addition to his other roles, big brother Tyler Sheridan (also a De La Salle grad and former state medallist — seventh at 145 in 2008 and again at 152 in ’09) is also Luke’s primary training partner, a role to which the older Sheridan was, quite literally, born. “We’ve been wrestling each other all our lives. We could probably wrestle with our eyes closed and know exactly what the other guy was going to do,” Tyler Sheridan said. “Wrestling has probably brought us closer than most siblings. … I never had an older brother, but I had wrestling coaches who played that role for me. At first, when we practiced together in high school, I could handle him pretty well. Now, I can’t hold anything back.” Neither can Luke. As gritty and grueling as the high school season was, and as tough as the competition in Monterrey was, this whole Olympics thing takes the competition to a whole new level. And so is the attention. “It’s a little overwhelming,” Luke Sheridan said shortly

Bob Larson

Luke Sheridan (top) will compete in the Greco-Roman style wrestling at the Youth Olympic Games, a form of wrestling that prohibits participants from grabbing their opponents below the waist.This means headlocks, like the one above, come in real handy. before departing for the Junior Nationals in Fargo, North Dakota. “When I won the Pan Am games, everybody in my neighborhood knew about it. People are starting to recognize me. Wrestling is not football — especially at De La Salle. So it’s exciting to be recognized like the football players are. It’s a little weird. Nobody ever wanted to talk to me before. Now, I’m starting to get a lot of calls from reporters.” Things are even tougher on the mat. The Youth Olympic Games are, ostensibly, a feeder program into the big-boy Olympics — sort of a junior varsity for international ama-

teur competition — complete with the flame, the rings, the athletes’ village, 26 sports, and all the Citius-Altius-Fortius you can get your hands on. “It’s exciting,” Sheridan said. “It’s an amazing opportunity for me to get to represent not just myself, but my family and my community. And now it’s beyond just De La Salle or California. Now it’s for the U.S.A. I’ve always wanted to make the Olympics. This is a step in the right direction.” That being said, as the stakes get higher, so does the proficiency of the opponents. Sheridan said he doesn’t know all that much about the field he will be facing in Singapore, but adds that, “There’s a Russian in my weight who is really tough. There’s always a Russian in wrestling.” Despite the accolades, accomplishments and opportunities afforded Sheridan, the 2009-10 wrestling season hasn’t been a cakewalk. It started well, to be sure. Then, a spot of adversity… “I got sick,” Sheridan said. “At first, they thought it was strep (throat). Then they said, ‘No, it’s mono(nucleosis). I was wiped out. I wasn’t 100 percent until league.” So, rather than train hard like he has every day since he was nine, Sheridan had to grit his teeth and do the one thing that has been difficult for him: rest. But once the doctors released him to start training again, he threw himself into his regimen with renewed vigor. “Up until high school, wrestling was always something that was fun for (Luke),” Tyler Sheridan said. “Then he decided it was something he could really excel at. He’s really put everything together, doing extra workouts and everything that you can do to get better. … As a person, he’s just so tough. He can grind it out with anybody.” Including, but not limited to, big bro. “Tyler?” Luke Sheridan said. “I couldn’t have gotten (to Singapore) without him. I was training six hours a day (before I got sick), then I couldn’t get out of bed. I couldn’t have done what I did without my family and teammates.” Fortunately for Sheridan, along with the groundswell of local fan support he also has a pretty solid coaching staff prepping him for the world stage. In addition to head coach Halvorson, who has coached internationally, as well as leading numerous junior world teams, Sheridan also has former North Coast Section, State and Pac-10 champion Kenny Cook pointing him in the right direction. Both Sheridans credit Cook, a three-time CIF medallist (4th at 145 in 1999, 2nd at 160 in 2000 and 1st at 160 in 2001) and the 2006 Pac-10 champ at 174 pounds wrestling out of UC Davis, with having greatly raised Luke’s competitive and technical level. “He beat on me every day in practice,” Luke Sheridan said. “He’s really helped me develop as a wrestler and as a person.” Another huge bright side is that Sheridan has the distinct advantage of winging off to the Malay Peninsula with a fairly significant support team in tow. Along with Halvorson — who Sheridan calls his “coach, and best friend as well” — Tyler Sheridan will be joining his younger brother in the Asian city-state as a coach (and punching bag, and confidant, and fan…) “To have my big brother and my head coach with me? I wouldn’t have it any other way,” Luke Sheridan said. “(Halvorson) is always there for me, every single day. We have a very strong bond. (Tyler) has really helped me. He always reminds me that the big important thing is to keep this all in perspective, and to do what I did to get here.” ✪ Contact Bill Kolb at bkolb@SportStarsMag.com.

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Learning to gain speed safely

EDITOR’S NOTE: Tim Rudd, the author of “Training Time” on page 15, also addressed speed training in our July 8 issue. To check that out visit www.SportStars Mag.com port speed is a multifaceted topic involving several factors. Although many coaches will say, “You can’t teach speed,” a periodized program can dramatically improve an athlete’s acceleration, deceleration and reaction time. These five “pillars” are what I use when developing a Sport Speed Training program. ■ FLEXIBILITY: It’s the most overlooked aspect of speed training. I tell my athletes that if you are running and your muscles are tight, it is like “running with the emergency brake on.” We use certain techniques to help our athletes improve flexibility for their sport. First, every workout session starts with a dynamic warm-up, a movement-based stretching program that warms up muscles and joints

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in preparation for exercise. At the end of our session, we use static stretching and foam roller self massage as a cool-down. Static stretching is a technique where you hold each stretch for 30 seconds or longer to increase flexibility and decrease lactic acid build up after a workout. The foam roller is a great tool to self massage out tight muscles and tender areas after a workout as well. ■ STABILITY: There are two types of stability we look for: core stability and single leg stability. All athletes need to be able to stabilize their core and transfer forces from their legs to their arms via the muscles of the trunk. Also, every athlete that works with us does some variety of single leg stability exercises — because running is a series of single leg hops when you look at it. An athlete must be stable through their core, and be stable on a single leg, to be fast. ■ STRENGTH: Every athlete I work with begins strength training with body weight exercises, and using perfect form is essential. Squats and lunges are the foundation for all athletic movement, so every athlete who

Health Watch James Faison

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wants to get faster needs to train and be comfortable in these two positions. ■ POWER: Power is the ability to use strength with speed. Power exercises train the athlete how to accelerate, decelerate and apply force. The following exercises are an invaluable part of our speed training program: High box step-ups, double-leg jumps, single-leg hops. ■ SPEED! The other pillars are used to build up to more traditional speed training. Speed drills need to be done using perfect technique. When teaching speedtraining drills, athletes should be given full rest so they keep good form and don’t get fatigued. Start with arm action, then build up to walking, marching drills, and on to skipping. Once these drills are easy, then one can start running up to full speed and include multi-directional activities. ✪ James Faison is an athletic trainer and certified strength and conditioning specialist for the Sports Medicine For Young Athletes center in Walnut Creek. If you have questions or comments regarding the “Health Watch” column, write the SMFYA staff at Health@ SportStarsMag.com.

July 22, 2010

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strong ARMED Pitching trio leads Antioch Little League softball squad into the state tournament By CHACE BrysoN | Editor Krystine Ball and Destinee Beesley were out of their comfort zone. For the 14-year-old pitchers on the Antioch Little League Juniors All-Star softball team, postgame interviews are not a normal occurrence. As the two of them fidget nervously and wear sheepish grins, it can be hard to imagine the steely and focused persona they inhabited no more than an hour before — when they were in their comfort zone. That zone consists of a pitching slab, approximately 40 feet in front of home plate. And on a hot Saturday afternoon in mid-July, the duo made things look pretty effortless as they combined to allow just two hits over four innings of work in the Little League District 4 Juniors softball championship against Clayton Valley. But this wasn’t any ordinary day in the pitching circle for the two girls. They were alternating innings. Beesley pitched the first and the third, striking out five without allowing a hit. Ball pitched the second and the fourth, striking out two while allowing two hits and no walks. And by the time Sara Gilbert pitched the fifth inning, allowing a harmless unearned run, Antioch was well on its way to a 14-2 championship victory and an entry into the Division 2 state tournament which began July 17 in Sacramento. “We’re deep in pitching,” Antioch coach Chris Ball said. “That’s one thing we really pride ourselves on.” Beesley undoubtedly set the tone for the championship tilt. After Clayton Valley’s Lindsay Treppa lined out hard to second base on the first pitch of the game, Beesley came back to strike out two of the next three batters as she worked around her only walk of the game. In the following inning, Beesley moved to second base as Krystine Ball took to the circle and promptly posted 20

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July 22, 2010

Bob Larson

LEFT: Teammates Krystine Ball, right, and Destinee Beesley enjoy a skip around the bases while celebrating Antioch’s 14-2 win in the District 4 Little League Juniors All-Star softball championship on July 10. ABOVE: Pitcher Sara Gilbert is hoisted up by coach Chris Ball after making the game’s final out. BELOW: Krystine Ball fires a pitch during the fourth inning.

SCORECARD

who has the best drop ball, and so on.” Both Beesley and the younger Ball each have five pitches that they’re working on through lessons with former Freedom High standout, Amanda Williams — not a bad pitching coach to have considering she’s one of the East Bay’s most-decorated softball pitchers of the past 20 years, including being named CalHiSports’ 2006 Ms. Softball State Player of the Year. “I’ve been working with both girls for probably about a year now,” Williams said. “I definitely have noticed a difference on (Destiny’s) spin and her movement...And while Krystine’s movements are maybe not as quick as Destiny’s, she’s got great control.” Williams isn’t teaching the girls to swing the bat, but they can do that, too. Beesley and Ball combined for four of Antioch’s 12hit attack against Clayton Valley. Gilbert also delivered a solid day at the plate, going 2-for-4 with a run and 2 RBIs. Gilbert, who at 15 is the oldest member of the team, may be enjoying Antioch’s success more than anyone as this is her one and only softball season. Ball and Beesley will likely both be members of the Antioch High junior varsity next March, but Gilbert attends Antioch’s alter-

Here are the District 4 Little League All-Star championship scores for the Majors (11-12), Juniors (13-14) and Seniors (15-18, softball only) divisions. Each champion advances to compete in the state tournament held at various locations. Tournament brackets for the next level can be found at www.llca4.org. BAsEBAll

Majors: Alameda 8, North Oakland 5

Juniors: Albany 11, Concord American 3 soFTBAll

Majors: Martinez 10, Pinole-Hercules 0 Juniors: Antioch 14, Clayton Valley 2 seniors: Martinez 14, Antioch 3

two strikeouts of her own during a scoreless frame. Most pitchers would balk at an alternating system, choosing rather to gain a rhythm early on and consistently maintain it as the game progresses. Against Clayton Valley, they embraced it. “We have different speeds, so it helps the two of us confuse the batters a little more,” said Beesley, who posted three more strikeouts in the third. Chris Ball admits he doesn’t do the alternating-pitcher scheme very often, but he thinks that sometimes it makes each pitcher even better. “With having three very well-rounded pitchers, they compete against each other,” the coach said. “If one goes out in the first inning and strikes out the side, then the next one wants to do it, and then the next one wants to do it. Then they see who has the best change-up, and Upload photos and team stats! www.SportStarsMag.com

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native high school, Prospects, which doesn’t offer athletic programs. “I think the key (against Clayton Valley) was being relaxed,” Gilbert said. “It was a championship game, so the pressure was there, but we did well under it.” Antioch was never in any real trouble against Clayton Valley. The team scored nine runs in the second inning to take a commanding lead. Danica Fowler had the flood gate-opening hit — a two-run double that followed Beesley’s bases-loaded single. It was the type of complete performance that inspired Chris Ball to think about a victory in Sacramento and a trip to the regional tournament in Arizona. “We’re not just deep in pitching,” the coach added. “We’ve got power. We’ve got line drive hitters. We’ve got speed. We’ve got defense...I know most of these kids for a couple years and we’ve been through some battles together. We finished second at state last year, so I have some veterans who know what to do and can lead by example.” But everything comes back to pitching in the game of softball. This means that Beesley and Krystine Ball will be getting used to postgame interviews sooner than they know. July 22, 2010

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Treating the injured young athlete

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ou’ve heard a lot about injuries in young athletes, but have heard very little from the mouths of teens themselves. Teenagers are naturally competitive, looking at it as being fun; they hate to lose and love to win. However, they don’t look at losing as the end of the world. They have a desire to improve their skill and potential, but don’t enjoy being hurt and know when they are not being taken care of properly. They’re trained to say ‘yes, sir/ma’am,’ to the coach and to do what they’re told — not leaving them much of a choice when being told to go back into the game. In light of this, coaches/trainers must improve their expertise and sensitivity toward injuries in young athletes, by familiarizing themselves with common types of injuries in sports. Understanding the difference between catastrophic, impact-related injuries and overuse injuries will help them to create a plan, like the one below, for dealing with injury. A. Sit the athlete out as a precaution when an athlete has felt a pop, significant swelling, or there is any question whether a bone is broken. Never send an athlete back into a game with these types of injuries. B. Refer to a qualified specialist for proper diagnosis. C. It is essential the athlete finish physical therapy painfree before beginning a training program. This is vital to avoid re-injuring the area in question and avoiding the development of compensatory movement patterns resulting from the body’s natural tendency to avoid pain. The following progression should be executed before

the athlete returns to the field: 1. Strengthen the movers (global) and stabilizers (local) muscles of the whole body with a variety of movement angles, patterns and skills. 2. Address active and passive flexibility throughout the whole body. 3. Progress toward putting the young athlete in controlled (non-randomized) situations at game speed, consisting of landing and jumping skills and multi-directional deceleration/ acceleration skills where a pattern will be described, shown and recited by the athlete to execute. 4. Finally, the athlete should be able to execute random sport situations without pain, and with a high rate of technical proficiency. Now, the young athlete is ready to return to the field, court, mat or pool. Too often, impatience and misguided priorities on the part of teens, parents and coaches can hinder this process. With appropriate education and understanding of the how and the why of preparing and developing young athletes for the demands of their sport, coaches/trainers can guarantee a reduction in injuries, recurring injuries, and optimization of athletic potential — ideally, shifting our focus from coaches being evaluated on how many championships they win to how well they prepare the kids athletically in the long term. ✪

Training Time Tim Rudd

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Tim Rudd is an IYCA Youth Conditioning, Speed, Agility, and Nutrition Specialist. You can contact him with questions or feedback at tim@fit2thecore.com.

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twenty-four7 June 1-Aug. 31: Concord, Bowling — Summer at Clayton Valley Bowl. Junior Adult Mixed 4’s, 6:30 p.m. Wed.; Junior League for kids 12:30 p.m. Thur.; Junior Scratch, 5:30 p.m. Thur.; “Digital Thunder” for kids, 4-6 p.m. Fri. Fees and registration: 925-689-4631, www.claytonvalleybowl.com. June 1-Dec. 31: Berkeley, Golf — Junior Academy. Ages 5U, Tilden Park Golf Course. $159/2 hours per week (Core Program); $99/1 hour per week (Try-Out Program). 510-848-7373, doi@tildenparkgc.com; www. thegolflearningcenters.com/ tildenpark. June 7-Aug. 29: Concord, Golf — Summer 2010 Session. Youth development golf program for boys, girls ages 5-18. Golfers ages 7-18 start at the PLAYer level and progress through Par, Birdie, and Eagle levels. Target classes available to ages

5-6. Applications on-line at www.thefirstteecontracosta. org or at facility Pro Shops. Schedules/locations/fees: 925-686-6262, angela@ thefirstteeecontracosta.org. July 1-Dec. 31: Richmond, Tennis — Tennis Instruction for youth. Classes Mon.Thur., Nichol Park. Ages 7-17 receive novice, inter-mediate tennis instruction from certified United States Professional Tennis Association instructor. $20/month; includes tennis rackets, balls. Info: Recreation Department, 510-620-6793; www. ci.richmond.ca.us. July 2-30: Concord, Martial arts — Taekwondo, Kenpo. Course No. 86153, ages 14+, 6:45-7:30 p.m. Mon., Wed., Fri., Baldwin Park Dance Studio. Offered by City of Concord. $85 residents/$90 nonresidents. Info: 10 a.m.-noon and 1-3 p.m. weekdays, 925-6713404, www.cityofconcord.

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org. Registration: www. concordreg.org; by fax. In person drop-off available.

org. Registration: www. concordreg.org; by fax or in person drop-off available.

July 2-30: Concord, Martial arts — Taekwondo and Kenpo-Youth-Beginning. Course No. 86147, ages 5-13, 6-6:45 p.m. Mon., Wed., Fri., at Baldwin Park Dance Studio. Offered by City of Concord. $85 residents/$90 nonresidents. Info: 10 a.m.-noon and 1-3 p.m. weekdays, 925-6713404, www.cityofconcord. org. Registration: www. concordreg.org; by fax or in person drop-off available.

July 6-22: Clayton, Soccer — Soccer camp for 3rd-8th graders. 6:30-8 p.m. Tues./ Thur. for 3rd-8th graders at Diablo View Middle School. $65, includes soccer ball, snacks, certificates. There will be short inspirational talk each evening. Players will be invited to a family picnic on July 31 at Clayton Valley Pumpkin Farm. Sponsored by Clayton Community Church Youth Ministry. See also photo camps and dance camps at www.claytoncc. com; click on calendar for July. 925-673-9060.

July 2-30: Concord, Martial arts — Taekwondo and Kenpo-Youth-Intermediate. Course No. 86150, ages 5-13, 6:45-7:15 p.m. Fri., Mon., Wed., at Baldwin Park Dance Studio. Offered by City of Concord. $85 residents/$90 nonresidents. Info: 10 a.m.-noon and 1-3 p.m. weekdays, 925-6713404, www.cityofconcord.

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Info: 10 a.m.-noon and 1-3 p.m. weekdays, 925-6713404, www.cityofconcord.

org. Registration: www. concordreg.org; by fax or in person drop-off available.

July 6-29: Concord, Martial arts — KenpoKajukenbo Karate-Adults. Course No. 86120, ages 14+, 7-8:30 p.m. Tues. and Thur., Willow Pass Community Center. Offered by City of Concord. $59 residents/$64 nonresidents.

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July 22, 2010

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twenty-four7 July 6-29: Concord, Martial arts — KenpoKajukenbo Karate-Youth. Course No. 86116, ages 10-13, 6-7 p.m. Tues. and Thur. at Willow Pass Community Center. Offered by City of Concord. $49 residents/$54 nonresidents. Info: 10 a.m.-noon and 1-3 p.m. weekdays, 925-6713404, www.cityofconcord. org. Registration: www. concordreg.org; by fax or in person drop-off sites available. June 1-Aug. 31: Concord, Bowling — Summer at Clayton Valley Bowl. Junior Adult Mixed 4’s, 6:30 p.m. Wed.; Junior League for kids 12:30 p.m. Thur.; Junior Scratch, 5:30 p.m. Thur.; “Digital Thunder” for kids, 4-6 p.m. Fri. Fees and registration: 925-689-4631, www.claytonvalleybowl.com. June 1-Dec. 31: Berkeley, Golf — JUNIOR ACADEMY. Ages 5U at Tilden Park Golf Course. $159/two hours per week (Core Program); $99/ one hour per week (Try-Out Program. 510-848-7373, doi@tildenparkgc.com; www. thegolflearningcenters.com/ tildenpark. June 7-Aug. 29: Concord, Golf — Summer 2010 Session. A youth development Golf program for boys and girls ages 5-18. Golfers ages 7-18 start at the PLAYer level and progress through Par, Birdie, and Eagle levels. Target classes available to ages 5-6. Applications on-line at www.thefirstteecontracosta. org or at facility Pro Shops. Schedules/locations/fees: 925-686-6262, angela@ thefirstteeecontracosta.org. July 1-Dec. 31: Richmond, Tennis — Tennis Instruction for Youth. Classes Mon.-

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Thur. at Nichol Park. Ages 7-17 receive novice and intermediate tennis instruction from a certified United States Professional Tennis Association Instructor. $20/month; includes tennis rackets and balls. Info: Recreation Department, 510620-6793; www.ci.richmond. ca.us. July 2-30: Concord, Martial arts — Taekwondo and Kenpo. Course No. 86153, ages 14+, 6:45-7:30 p.m. Mon., Wed., Fri., at Baldwin Park Dance Studio. Offered by City of Concord. $85 residents/$90 nonresidents. Info: 10 a.m.-noon and 1-3 p.m. weekdays, 925-6713404, www.cityofconcord. org. Registration: www. concordreg.org; by fax or in person drop-off sites available. July 2-30: Concord, Martial arts — Taekwondo and Kenpo-Youth-Beginning. Course No. 86147, ages 5-13, 6-6:45 p.m. Mon., Wed., Fri., at Baldwin Park Dance Studio. Offered by City of Concord. $85 residents/$90 nonresidents. Info: 10 a.m.-noon and 1-3 p.m. weekdays, 925-6713404, www.cityofconcord. org. Registration: www. concordreg.org; by fax or in person drop-off sites available. July 2-30: Concord, Martial arts — Taekwondo and Kenpo-Youth-Intermediate. Course No. 86150, ages 5-13, 6:45-7:15 p.m. Fri., Mon., Wed., at Baldwin Park Dance Studio. Offered by City of Concord. $85 residents/$90 nonresidents. Info: 10 a.m.-noon and 1-3 p.m. weekdays, 925-6713404, www.cityofconcord. org. Registration: www. concordreg.org; by fax or in person drop-off available.

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Don’t make me take your 5-iron away” “NCPGA Youth Tour requires parents to caddy at younger levels Youth sports has always been promoted as a place where young athletes can discover their physical vocabulary, and have provided kids the opportunities to grow as players and people. However, the vicarious appetite of youth sports parents has left some sports doing more parental guidance counseling than developing abilities in young athletes. Golf has never been exempt from the youth sports parent fanatic. Despite a tradition of integrity, honor, and individual responsibility, golf is a sport notorious for some of the best (meaning worst) of the ranting parent corps. But, the Northern California PGA Junior Tour is one organization refusing to believe parents are out to live through their children. The tour has been designed as

Gary Xavier

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pro notes a professional tournament series for boys and girls of age 18 and under. The tour not only allows parents to caddie for all players, but encourages it. It is a requirement to have a parent caddie as an IGNITE TOUR player (boys and girls 11 & under). Technically, this is not a new idea. The USGA has allowed the use of parent caddies in the past with very little cooperation from the parents, so they removed this policy in their junior events. What makes this new organization different? The Tour believes that if you give the parent and the player this “inside the ropes” experience, you give them a feeling of ownership over the event. Therefore, they want to add more to the quality of the event. The NCPGA Junior Tour believes all parents are looking out for the best interest of their son or daughter. Only time will tell how these young athletes will develop from this unusual model for youth sports.

The Northern California PGA Junior Tour has a few more tournaments left in its 2010 season wrapping up with the 2010 TOUR CHAMPIONSHIP at Pasatiempo Golf Club August 16-17 in Santa Cruz. To see more about this organization go to www.ncpga.com

Getting to know the First Tee Since 1997, The First Tee has introduced the game of golf and its values to more than 3.5 million participants. Additionally, more than 7,800 volunteers, including PGA and LPGA teaching professionals, are engaged in mentoring and coaching participants. The First Tee’s focus is to impact the lives of young people by creating fun, golf-related opportunities to learn valuable life skills that can be applied on and off the golf course. Participants can begin as young as 5 years old. Our “target” group (5-6 year olds) are introduced to The First Tee in a fun and safe environment that creates curiosity about the game of golf. Participants 7-years or

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Dougherty Valley senior Evelyn Chang attempts a putt while competing in the NCPGA Youth Tour Summer Circuit I tournament at Contra Costa Country Club on June 15. Butch Noble

older come into the program at the PLAYer level. Once PLAYer skills are mastered, the young golfers move through levels Par, Birdie and Eagle. A player moves up as he or she learns The First Tee Code of Conduct for each level, as well as the golf skills, rules and etiquette for each level. The First Tee of Contra Costa has classes at Diablo Creek, Lone Tree, Boundary Oak and Pine Meadow Golf Courses. Summer Session and Camps are still available! If you are unable to attend this summer, try our Fall Session. Fee assistance is available if you need. For more information and class schedules, visit www.thefirstteecontracosta.org.

Get on the team If you are interested in playing on your high school golf team, it might be helpful if you do a little homework first. The boys season typically runs through the spring with qualifying starting in February, while the girls season begins soon after school starts in the fall. My advice would be to contact the golf coach at your high school, introduce yourself and learn when tryouts are and perhaps any thing else the coach has to offer. How many golfer’s are returning, what kind of scoring will it take to make the team and how many player’s will be on the team. The sooner you can find out this important information, the sooner you can begin to prepare. Sadly, some programs are cancelled because there are not enough player’s trying out. However, some high

schools have a reputation of fielding strong teams year in and year out. These programs clearly have standout players who are participating year--round in golf tournaments and many have coaches or golf instructors working with them. I have seen and coached plenty of first-year golfers who have joined their school teams and contributed immediately. It’s never too late to begin playing, so get started now. ✪ Pro Notes is a regular item compiled by Gary Xavier (Northern California Junior Golf Tournament director), Angela Paradise (Executive Asst. of First Tee Contra Costa), and Dave DeLong (PGA professional and director of instruction at Boundary Oak GC). Contact them at the following addresses: gxavier@pgahq.com; angela@thefirstteecontracosta.org; ddelongolf@aol. com.

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July 22, 2010

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game day July 23-25: El Cerrito, Swim — Redwood Empire Swim League Closed Championship Meet. Starts 4 p.m. Friday; starts 9 a.m. Sat./Sun. All at El Cerrito Swim Center. Meet Director: Jerry Abee, JABEE68@AOL. COM, jabee@ci.el-cerrito. ca.us, 510-559-7010; www. pacswim.org. July 24: Hercules, Triathlon — City of Hercules & Hercules Fitness 2010 Marshmallow Triathlon. Adult Division: 8-10 a.m.; includes 500-yd. swim, 3-mile run, 6-mile bike. Youth/Family Division: 10-11:30 a.m.; includes 250-yd. swim, 1.5mile run, 1.5-mile bike. $30. Register by July 17: 510799-8229, www.ci.hercules. ca.us; 510-724-2900, www. herculesfit.com.

www.onyourmarkevents.com. July 24-25: Concord, Swim — Terrapins Swim Team in Tiger c/b/a+ long course meet. At Concord Community Pool. Info. and registration: 925-680-8372, www.terrapinswim.com. July 24-25: Concord, Swim — Ygnacio Wood Swim Team at Woodlands Invitational. At Woodlands. 925-798-1261, www.ywst.org. July 24-25: Concord, Soccer — 8th annual

www.twitter.com/sportstarsmag Diablo FC Summer Classic. Weekend US Club Soccer tournament in Concord for U12, U13, U14 and U15 boys & girls Gold and Silver level teams.Info: mwhite@ diablofc.org. 925-798-4625, www.diablofc.org. July 25: San Francisco, Race — San Francisco Marathon. Annual event to benefit the American Cancer Society. 5:30 a.m. full marathon, 5:32 1st half marathon, 8:15 a.m. 2nd half marathon, 7:45 a.m.

5K progressive marathon. Registration by 5 p.m. July 20: www.thesfmarathon.com; info@thesfmarathon.com. July 25: San Francisco, Race — San Francisco Marathon and Run for Burma. Event includes 5K run/walk, progressive marathon, half marathon and full marathon. Info: www. burmamission.org; sfm@ burmamission.org. July 28: Concord, Swim — Sprinters vs. Forest Hills. At Springwood Swim

Club. 925-798-3493, www. springwoodswim.com. July 28: Pinole, Swim — Ygnacio Wood Swim Team Meet. 6-9 p.m. at Pinole Valley High School. 925-7981261, www.ywst.org. July 28-Aug. 1: Concord, Swim — Pacific Swimming Far Western Age Group Long Course Championship Meet. At Concord Community Pool. Begins 9 a.m. each day. Info: Terrapins Swim Team, Carol Moreno, 925-2507561; www.pacswim.org.

GAME DAY July 31: Walnut Creek, Swim — Springwood Swim Club Sprinters in League Championship. Clarke Memorial Pool. 925-798-3493, www. springwoodswim.com. July 31: Livermore, Race — Club Moto Saturday Summer Night Series-Round 5. 4 p.m. practice with races to follow at Club Moto. $35 first class; $30 second class/ Peewees; $10 gate fee/$5 ages 12-6; ages 5U free. Hotline: 925-308-4814; www. clubmoto.com.

July 24: Livermore, Race — Lake Del Valle Aqua Challenge. 8:30 a.m., Lake Del Valle Regional Park Swim Beach. Swim: 1/2m, 1m, 2m; Swim/Run: 1m swim, 3m run. $35 preregistration/$40 race day. Info: 209-795-7832, info@ onyourmarkevents.com;

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Flip Video lends a lens to SportStars SportStars Magazine is continuing to look for new ways to bring the teen sporting world of Contra Costa County to life. So in that pursuit, we have teamed with the folks at Flip Video to help spruce up our website, www.SportStarsMag.com. Flip recently supplied SportStars with a pair of brand new Slide HD cameras that we can take to the streets, er, fields. The Slide HD will give us up to four hours of high-definition video, allowing us to film game action, interviews, and perhaps even some of the everyday goings-on within our offices. Once we’ve filmed what we need, we can use the Slide’s fancy built-in USB arm to plug into our computers and upload the videos to our website. And once we do that, we’ll show it off to you in the Flip-sponsored video window. So check out www.SportStarsMag.com in the coming weeks for some of our first video offerings, and in the meantime, check out the Slide HD and other cameras offered by Flip at www.TheFlip.com.

Sportform offers the “weight plate” Duke Zielinski and his staff at the Concord-based Sportform have a unique approach to improving athletic performance, combining the critical mental aspects of preparation with correct physical techniques. The goal for each athlete is to control their own focus on the correct technique, and to learn to “feel” what is right. With that in mind, they’ve developed the “Weight Plate.” The Weight Plate is utilized to help athletes understand their own balance point and how their physical movements and muscular tension control their balance. An athlete stands on the weight plate and shifts his or her weight from side to side, and forward and backward. A computer screen connected to the plate presents a visual interpretation of the movement as well as sounds which indicate how slowly or quickly the athlete has shifted. This knowledge can immediately be used to hone weight shifts in sports like baseball, softball, or even golf. By maintaining balance and accelerating a weight shift, an athlete could improve the power or speed of his or her swing. For more about the Weight Plate and how it might help you, contact Sportform at 925-459-2880 or sportform@astound.net.

Nike Golf products aimed at the high school golfer Nike Golf recently tipped SportStars off to a few new products that might interest the high school golfer. We thought we’d share. The first is the Nike Air Anthem, a soft synthetic leather shoe with a low-profile Nike Air unit in its heel. It comes in four different color schemes, which should match up with just about any of our local high schools’ color schemes. Even California, with its crazy mix of blue and orange. (Just kidding, Grizzlies) Our favorite part about the Air Anthem, it’s got a two-year limited waterproof warranty. Perfect for the SportStars staff members who tend to play from the hazards. Also, keep an eye out for the Nike Crush golf ball. Its two-piece design is geared toward providing a longer and straighter performance to a wide variety of swing speeds. Find out more about these products at www.NikeGolf.com

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July 22, 2010

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photo finish

You don’t tell Andrew Ferber where to be on a soccer field. He tells you. Ferber, a goalkeeper for the U15 Mustang Hotspurs, directs traffic at the Mustang Soccer Complex in Danville on July 17. Ferber and the rest of the Hotspurs often travel across the U.S. to compete in high-end tournaments, but will actually get to host their own tournament when the boys Mustang Stampede arrives Aug. 20-22. PHOTO BY BOB LARSON

Want to submit your pic for Photo Finish? Send it to us at editor@SportStarsMag.com Photos must be 300 dpi and at least 10 inches wide in the jpeg format. Please identify every person in the photo and include your contact information. 30

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Issue 4, 07.22.2010