ATHLETE OF THE YEAR: Rachel McCoy, Miller, Senior
Story by Pete Marshall, Staff Writer
It’s hard to fathom that at the beginning of the season, she was quitting track and field. By the end, she was winning state and hoping to compete in track in college.
“I always knew I could do it (win state),” Miller senior Rachel McCoy said. “But it’s always surprising when I actually do it.”
Such was the journey this season for McCoy. The senior, who has signed with Long Island University to play basketball, won state in the high jump as a sophomore with a solid, but unspectacular jump of 5 feet, 8 inches. That gave her an ego problem.
“I got this attitude that I can do anything,” she said. “This should be run my way. It was immature to think that.”
Colony High School is admittedly curious about how successful it could be in the highly competitive Baseline League. Piquing that curiosity is the fact that Colony has been dominant in several sports during its reign in the Mt. Baldy League.
There will be a Foothill-Citrus Area releaguing meeting March 22 discussing the realignment that will take effect in the fall of 2014, but Colony athletic director Jaime Sandoval doesn’t envision his school going anywhere.
“Everybody’s curious,” Sandoval said. “But you look across the board at where you fit best. And for Colony, the best fit is (the Mt. Baldy League).”
The vision that prompted Matt Bechtel to leave his first head coaching job after just two seasons and leave the Chaffey Joint Union School District after 16 years came to fruition last week. After one year as the Chino Hills offensive coordinator, Bechtel was hired as the school’s head football coach. He interviewed on Feb. 12 and was offered the position Feb. 14.
Bechtel, Colony’s head coach from 2010 to 2011, replaces Derek Bub, who resigned after five years as head coach citing the death of his father in October and his desire to pursue an administrative position. Knowing Bub was closing in on his administrative credential, Bechtel had his eye on the Chino Hills head coaching job when he accepted the offensive coordinator role and a teaching position last year in the Chino Valley Unified School District. But the move didn’t come without risk.
“Most people don’t get an administrative credential and sit on it for five or six years,” Bechtel said. “Did I think this was going to happen in eight months? No. It was a gamble for me to come here. I gave up tenure and 16 years at a time when job security in the teaching profession was in disarray, but you can’t get ahead in life without taking risks.”
Seattle Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner is finally getting his due. After receiving just one scholarship offer out of Colony High School, he finished his career at Utah State as the all-time leading tackler in the history of the WAC. The Seahawks endured plenty of criticism for selecting the undersized Wagner 15th in the second round of the 2012 draft, but that was a distant memory when he finished second in the Defensive Rookie of the Year voting Saturday night.
Carolina Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly, the No. 9 overall pick, won the award with 28 first-place votes to Wagner’s 11. That, however, wasn’t much consolation to Wagner, who tweeted…
To say I’m disappointed is not even the word…
— Bobby Wagner (@Bwagz54) February 3, 2013
Just going to keep playing my ass off and when all said and done you will respect me
— Bobby Wagner (@Bwagz54) February 3, 2013
There was a specific point this season at which Colony guard Everett Turner began to draw the eye of more college scouts, something he hopes will continue at a high-profile showcase on Saturday. Colony will take on Mission Viejo at noon in the Nike Extravaganza at Mater Dei High School, where the senior hopes to continue a tear that began following the Titans loss to Mt. Baldy League rival Montclair Jan. 4.
The 6-foot-2 combo guard is averaging 27.5 points, 7.5 rebounds and four steals since Jan. 4. The streak includes a 41-point game and 22 points, 11 rebounds and six assists in a rematch win over Montclair on Jan. 18.
BOYS BASKETBALL TOP 10
4. Chino Hills
5. Rancho Cucamonga
6. La Verne Lutheran
League MVPs: Alex Arellano, Chino, QB; Samajie Grant, Colony, RB
Willie Morris, Chino
Christian Galvez, Chino
Victor Garcia, Chino
Austin Coach, Chino
Jessie Rosas, Chino
Mike Lara, Chino
Malik Demby, Chino
No. 1 Summit over Paloma Valley
La Quinta over Colony
Wildomar Elsinore over Colton
No. 4 Moreno Valley Rancho Verde over Chaffey
Riverside North over No. 3 Kaiser
Palm Springs over Temescal Canyon
Riverside Arlington over Chino
No. 2 Menifee Heritage over Palm Desert
No. 1 Summit over La Quinta
Wildomar Elsinore over No. 4 Moreno Valley Rancho Verde
Riverside North over Palm Springs
No. 2 Menifee Heritage over Riverside Arlington