Reigning Inland Valley Player of the Year Amy Okonkwo of Etiwanda High School has made a verbal commitment to USC.
Okonkwo averaged 15.7 points and 9.5 rebounds her first year with the Eagles (28-4) after transferring from Baseline League rival Los Osos.
She was at her best in the biggest games, scoring a season-high 28 points in the Eagles’ 73-72 win over Mater Dei, then ranked No. 1 in the nation, in the CIF Southern Section semifinal. Included in that point tally was a 3-pointer in overtime that gave her team a 67-64 lead it never relinquished.
The 6-foot-1 forward also tallied 19 against Corona Santiago in the CIF championship game and 18 against Long Beach Poly in a state playoff loss.
Okonkwo heads a group of five all headed to Division I schools. The others are point guard McKynzie Fort (Oregon), wing Alyssa Anderson (UNLV), point guard Cherise Harris (Arizona) and center Daeja Smith (Cal State Fullerton).
Alyssa Ybanez, left, transferred from Rim of the World to Los Osos.
It’s hard to imagine the Los Osos volleyball team getting much better, but that’s exactly what happened this offseason. The team that finished one win shy of the first CIF championship in school history gained two transfers, one of which helped lead her team to a CIF title last season.
Alyssa Ybanez, the 2012 Mountain Valley League offensive MVP, transferred to Los Osos along with 6-foot-1 Aquinas middle blocker Delaney Goodrich. They will join a core of players at Los Osos including the reigning Daily Bulletin Player of the Year, Cal-bound senior Ashten Smith-Gooden and Ashley Kaylor, a first team All-Valley selection last season.
Redlands High baseball coach Estevan Valencia reported several awards his program won recently.
First, the RHS baseball field was chosen as the 2013 National High School Baseball Coaches Association Region 8 (there are only 8 regions in the country) and is up for consideration for National Field of the year. The national winner will be announced December 6.
Also, Jacob Nottingham and Angel Landazuri, who were both first team all-CIF, were named TPX Louisville Slugger All-Americans. Nottingham was a first-team all-American, Landazuri was second team.
Nottingham has started his pro career in the minors with the Houston Astros and Landazuri is headed to UC Riverside.
Other Terriers to play in college include: Sean Smith (Chico State), Anthony Aguila (Arizona Western College), Darryl Miller (football and baseball at Azusa Pacific), Hayden Haight (University of Redlands).
Michael Anderson, new girls basketball coach at Arroyo Valley
Michael Anderson, who led Rialto High School’s girls basketball program to prominence in his five years as head coach, is the new head coach at Arroyo Valley he said.
Anderson built a 123-21 record in five years, winning at CIF-SS title in 2011 and was runner-up in the state that year. He stepped down after last season to spend time with his mother, who had suffered a stroke.
His mother lives with him, from where he can “walk to Arroyo Valley.”
Anderson said he talked to seven different schools after last season, but “Arroyo Valley was my first choice all along.”
Anderson takes over an Arroyo Valley program that went 6-20 last season and was blown out by Anderson’s Rialto squad by an average of 64 points in two San Andreas League games.
Former Fontana High School basketball player Demetrius Walker, who played at the University of New Mexico last season, has transferred to Grand Canyon University in Arizona.
Grand Canyon, which will compete in its first season in the Western Athletic Conference this year, is coached by former NBA player Dan Majerle.
“We are excited to have a player of Demetrius’ ability that has played at both New Mexico and Arizona State,” said Majerle in a press release. “It is good to have him here at GCU, as he brings with him a lot of experience and can score the basketball. He will be big for our team next season having a guy that we can go to. ”
Last season, Walker, a 6–foot-2 guard, averaged 5.0 points and 15.4 minutes per game for New Mexico, the Mountain West Conference champions. Walker graduated from New Mexico in May and will pursue a graduate degree from Grand Canyon.
There were two distinct sides to be taken in the debate over the Sunkist League baseball MVP. The pitching side: a 9-0 record, 0.95 ERA, six complete games, 114 strikeouts and just 12 walks in just 74 innings. And the offensive side: .455 batting average, three home runs, 41 RBIs and 29 runs scored in 28 games with a .518 on-base percentage.
Of course, both sides belonged to junior Chris Mathewson of league champion Kaiser. Needless to say, it wasn’t much of a debate.
MVP: Chris Mathewson JR Kaiser
Toby Rainwater JR Kaiser
Ryan Mota JR Kaiser
Jacob Sanchez JR Kaiser
Alex Valdivia JR Kaiser
David Osuna SR Kaiser
Jacob Barajas SR Kaiser
Anthony Ayala SR Fontana
Andres Solis SR Fontana
Armondo Zapata JR Fontana Continue reading →
Vinny Fazio was hired as the new football coach at Murrieta Valley, multiple outlets are reporting, after revealing Thursday that he resigned following one spectacular season at Eisenhower.
Fazio began searching for other opportunities after he received a pink slip from Eisenhower in March. Though plenty who are pink-slipped end up with a job the following year, it was Fazio’s first such experience with one. A player at Fontana and first-year coach for a the 7-3 co-Citrus Belt League champion Eisenhower team last season, the last thing Fazio wanted to do was leave.
“That was never my plan. I was going to be there 10 to 15 years,” Fazio said. “I had people telling me at the district level and the school-site level ‘You probably need to look for other jobs.’ I love the kids. I feel really bad. On my end, I didn’t have a choice.”
The jumble of teams behind Sierra League champion West Covina South Hills during the regular season didn’t make for any easy decisions after the year ended. The all-league team had an obvious MVP, but there were plenty of arguments to be made beyond that. As it turned out, second-place Damien, and third-place Claremont (which tied in the standings) received three first team all-league selections as did third-place Chino Hills.
MVP: Adrian Dehorta, Sr., South Hills
Anthony Seminaris, Sr., Ayala
Robert Longtree, Sr., Ayala
Dylan Lowenstein, Sr., Chino Hills
Jeremy Steggell, Sr., Chino Hills
Austin Harvey, Sr., Chino Hills
Nick Costello, Sr., Claremont
Jeremy Giles, Sr., Claremont
Alex Galuchie, Jr., Claremont Continue reading →
Ayala athletic director Warren Reed made one last plea with five proposals remaining at Monday’s Mt. SAC area releaguing meeting, only one of which included his school in the Baseline League. Apparently it fell on deaf ears.
Ayala and Chino Hills joined Etiwanda, Los Osos, Rancho Cucamonga and Upland in perhaps the closest thing we’ve seen to a super-league in the Inland Valley in the last 10 years. There is no doubt in my mind Ayala ended up in the absolute worst situation of any school in the Inland Valley, joining a league where the other five schools have an enrollment of at least 3,000 to Ayala’s 2,500. Those other five school’s however, will be fascinating to watch as Chino Hills brings strong football, basketball, baseball, softball and soccer programs.
Alta Loma was the big winner, moving to a Mt. Baldy League that is now weaker sans Chino, a two-time football league champion in the last three years. Bonita knew it was leaving the Hacienda League, but was thrilled to land in the Sierra as opposed to the Baseline, where two of the last five remaining proposals placed the Bearcats.
Here is a look at all the new leagues in the Mt. SAC area beginning in the fall of 2014: