Martinez appearance the highlight of major cross country meet

Embedded image permalink

One of the major cross country meets of the season took place today at Glen Helen Regional Park. It was the annual Inland Empire Challenge, featuring the best of San Bernardino and Riverside counties.

So it was only appropriate that Rancho Cucamonga native Brenda Martinez was a star attraction. Martinez became the first American women ever to win a medal in the 800 meters at the World Championships when she got the bronze in August.

For more than four hours she signed autographs. We have all been to celebrity autograph cattle call signings. You’re lucky if the person looks up while quickly scribbling their name. Not only did Brenda sign, she personalized every one of them, even making sure she had the proper spelling of their first name. She talked to each of the 1,000 or so people in line and also obliged every person that wanted their photo taken with her.

The only break she took was when she had to jump up on the makeshift stage to help present awards.

The cute moment of the day came when runner Steven Cabral of San Jacinto asked if he could give her a kiss. She glanced over at husband Carlos who gave her the go ahead. She let the upstart runner give her a peck on the cheek.

On the table next to her, a monitor with the video of her 800 meter race at Worlds ran on a loop so all could see her impressive performance. Many seemed in awe of her great kick that helped her nudge out a fellow American for the bronze.

It’s great not only to have an athlete from the Inland Empire represent on the international stage, but one who wants to step up and be a role model and inspire, particularly the Hispanic community.

Embedded image permalink

CIF-SS Girls’ volleyball polls

Newest poll released Sept. 9

Division 1-AA - 1. Lakewood; 2. Los Alamitos; 3. Corona del Mar; 4. Redondo Union; 5. Long Beach Poly; 6. Marymoumt; 7. Notre Dame Academy; 8. Tesoro; 9. Mater Dei; 10 Newport Harbor

Division 1-A – 1. La Salle; 2. El Dorado; 3. Laguna Beach; 4. Bishop Montgomery; 5. Capistrano Valley; 6. San Juan Hills; 7. Thousand Oaks; 8. St. Lucy’s; 9. Louisville; 10. Anaheim Canyon.

Division 2-AA – 1. Los Osos; 2. Riverside Martin Luther King; 3. South Torrance; 4. Corona Santiago; 5. Oaks Christian; 6. North Torrance; 7. Downey; 8. Rancho Cucamonga; 9. Los Altos; 10. Alta Loma.

Division 2-A - 1. Whittier Christian; 2. Chadwick; 3. Yorba Linda; 4. Mayfield; 5. Arcadia; 6. Serrano; 7. Oxnard; 8. Troy; 9. Pasadena Poly; 10. Burbank Burroughs.

Division 2-A - 1. Whittier Christian; 2. Chadwick; 3. Yorba Linda; 4. Mayfield; 5. Arcadia; 6. Serrano; 7. Oxnard; 8. Troy; 9. Pasadena Poly; 10. Burbank Burroughs.

Division 3-AA – 1. Rim of the World; 2. Windward; 3. Santa Monica; 4. Sierra Canyon; 5. La Serna; 6. Mayfair; 7. Riverside Poly; 8. Viewpoint; 9. Quartz Hill; 10. Silverado

Division 3-A – 1. Sage Hill; 2. Templeton; 3. Aquinas; 4. St. Margaret’s 5. Ontario Christian; 6. Nipomo; 7. Crean Lutheran; 8. La Sierra Academy; 9. San Gabriel Academy; 10. San Dimas.

Division 4-AA – 1. Saddleback Valley Christian; 2. Hemet; 3. St. Paul; 4. Don Lugo; 5. Connelly; 6. Colony; 7. Ocean View; 8. Cantwell Sacred Heart; 9. San Jacinto; 10. St. Monica.

Division 4-A – 1. Pacifica Christian; 2. Cate; 3. Laguna Blanca; 4. Rolling Hills Prep; 5. Archer; 6. St. Anthony; 7. Vistamar; 8. Nordhoff; 9. Milken Community; 10. Lancaster Paraclete.

Division 5-AA - 1. Alverno; 2. Pomona Catholic; 3. Coastal Christian; 4. Lancaster Desert Christian; 5. Santa Clarita Christian; 6. La Sierra Academy; 7. Boron; 8. Upland Christian; 9. Coast Union; 10. Faith Baptist.

Division 5-A – 1. Orangewood Christian; 2. St. Monica Academy; 3. Riverside Christian; 4. Nuview Bridge; 5. West Shores; 6. Excelsior Charter; 7. Lake Arrowhead Christian; 8. Trona; 9. Pacific Lutheran; 10. Riverside Prep.

Etiwanda basketball standout headed to USC


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).

Rim’s top returner from CIF champion volleyball team transfers to Los Osos

Alyssa Ybanez, left, transferred from Rim of the World to Los Osos.

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.

Continue reading

Redlands High baseball earns “Field of the Year” award

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 agrees to coach Arroyo Valley girls basketball


Michael Anderson, new girls basketball coach at Arroyo Valley

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.

A full story will be on

Demetrius Walker, former Fontana High basketball player transfers to Grand Canyon

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.

All-Sunkist League baseball team: Two sides to this MVP discussion

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

First Team
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

As expected, Eisenhower football coach accepts position at Murrieta Valley

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. Vinny Fazio MugThough 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.”

All-Sierra League baseball team: MVP only easy decision in this league

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

First Team
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