Among others earning top state honors are Michael Norman of Vista Murrieta (juniors), Matt Katnik of St. John Bosco (Division II) and Sam Metcalf of Farmersville (Division V). Brandon Presley from Great Oak of Temecula also is second-ever State Three-Sport Athlete of the Year.
For announcement of the Cal-Hi Sports Boys State Athlete of the Year for 2014-15, CLICK HERE.
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Congratulations to the following boys for being selected as a 2014-15 Cal-Hi Sports State Athlete of the Year:
T.J. DeFalco (Huntington Beach) Volleyball
Also making it easier to choose DeFalco for the top boys honor is that fact the College Park of Pleasant Hill’s Joe DeMers skipped playing basketball for his senior year. DeMers, the Mr. Baseball State Player of the Year, was the junior honoree last year because he was such a strong player on the court.
Note: For other seniors who would be Athletes of Honor, please check below underneath each CIF division.
Michael Norman (Vista Murrieta, Murrieta) Track
Since Norman’s phenomenal 200-400 sprint double at the CIF state meet in June, the junior standout has continued to lower his times. He recently lowered his own all-time state record in the 200 to a wind-legal 20.24 at the USATF Junior Outdoor Championships in Eugene, Ore. He was second in that race, but for a performer with his senior season still to come that’s rather hard to believe. Norman was an easy choice as the Gatorade State Boys Track Athlete of the Year and then was later chosen as the Gatorade National Boys Track Athlete of the Year. He set a state record with a clocking of 20.30 seconds in the 200 at the state meet, which came after he earlier had set a state record in the 400 with a winning time of 45.19. With Norman also helping the Broncos clock 3:14.81 for a third-place showing in the 4×400 relay, they won the school’s first boys track state team title. According to the Gatorade release, he also has compiled a 3.54 weighted GPA.
More Junior Athletes of Honor:
Lonzo Ball (Chino Hills) basketball
T.J. Brock (Chaminade, West Hills) track
Khalil Dorsey (Colony, Ontario) football, track
Ju’Wuane Hughes (Hanford) football, basketball
Tiegen Jones (Capital Christian, Sacramento) basketball, baseball
Sean McGrew (St. John Bosco, Bellflower) football, track
Johnny McWilliams (San Marcos) football, basketball
A.J. Nevills (Clovis) football, wrestling
Jake Ogden (Dana Hills, Dana Point) cross country, track
Maxime Rooney (Granada, Livermore) swimming
Grant Shoults (Santa Margarita, Rancho SM) swimming
Caden Voges (Sacramento) football, baseball
Justin Mejia (Clovis) Wrestling
For a sophomore to already have two CIF state titles, that makes it difficult to beat for this honor and that was the case. There were some others that were checked out, but Mejia’s 1-0 decision over David Campbell from CIF Central Section rival Mission Oak (Tulare) gave him the title in the 113-pound weight class. As a freshman, Mejia earned his first CIF state crown in the 106-pound division. Also regarded as one of the top wrestling recruits for the Class of 2017 in the nation, he has committed to NCAA powerhouse Iowa.
More Sophomore Athletes of Honor:
Hunter Greene (Notre Dame, Sherman Oaks) baseball
Niamey Harris (Mission, San Francisco) football, basketball
Darnay Holmes (Newbury Park) football
Christian Pinzon (Bellflower) football, soccer
Cody Riley (Sierra Canyon, Chatsworth) basketball
Zachary Shinnick (Damien, La Verne) track
Seth Nevills (Clovis) Wrestling
Yes, it’s another honoree from the state champion Cougars’ wrestling program and another Nevills. Seth’s older brother, Nick, was our overall State Boys Athlete of the Year for 2013-14 and by the time Seth’s high school career is done he could join his brother in winning that honor, although we don’t know yet if he’s also a football guy like his brothers. His other older brother, A.J., will be a senior next year at Clovis and is also a football-wrestling standout. In addition, Seth is the second wrestler in a row to take home our State Freshmen Athlete of the Year honor following Justin Mejia from last year. As long as Clovis freshmen keep winning CIF state titles, that streak may go on for awhile. Going a perfect 44-0 on the season, Nevills capped off his first high school season with a pin in the 2nd period over Fresno Bullard’s Bevan Brandt to capture the 220-pound state title. Earlier in the season, he also defeated the eventual state heavyweight champion. In early national rankings for next season by FloWrestling, he is ranked at No. 5 in the nation in his weight class. He’ll only be a sophomore.
More Frosh Athletes of Honor:
Jordan Brown (Woodcreek, Roseville) basketball
Siddarth Chari (Menlo School, Atherton) tennis
Joey Magrisi (Rancho Bernardo, San Diego) baseball
Cade Olivas (St. John Bosco, Bellflower) wrestling
DIVISION I SCHOOLS:
T.J. DeFalco (Huntington Beach) Volleyball
This is another category that most years falls automatically to the overall State Boys Athlete of the Year. That’s the case again this time with DeFalco.
More Division I Athletes of Honor:
Corban Anderson (Granite Bay) soccer
Sheldon Arnold (Santee, Los Angeles) football, track
Isaiah Bailey (Jesuit, Carmichael) football, basketball
Robert Brandt (Loyola, Los Angeles) cross country, track
Jake Browning (Folsom) football
Aidan Burns (Bellarmine, San Jose) swimming
Adrian Chambani (Bellarmine, San Jose) tennis
Justin Collins (Carson) track
Sam Darnold (San Clemente) football, basketball
Nate Jones (Tracy) football, track
Malik McMorris (Mater Dei, Santa Ana) football, track
Cal Mende (Redlands) water polo, volleyball
Jordan Miller (Oceanside) football, track
Darrin Paulo (Grant, Sacramento) football, track
Adam Prentice (Clovis) football, wrestling
DIVISION II SCHOOLS:
Matt Katnik (St. John Bosco, Bellflower) Football, Track
Known for his world class shot putting ability, Katnik also was a big force on the offensive line creating room for junior teammate Sean McGrew (also seriously considered for this honor as well as the top spot for junors) to run for big gains on the Braves’ football team. Considered by some as not only the top shot putter in the state but in the nation, Katnik made sure he wouldn’t finish in second place again this year at the CIF state meet when he captured the shot put state title while also finishing in fifth in the discuss at the state. While it didn’t help him earn this honor, he also at one point had a reported GPA of 4.4, which shows he’s not just among the state’s best on the field but in the classroom as well. Katnik, who earned all-state recognition in football both as a junior when Bosco won the CIF Open Division state title and again as a senior when the Braves were 13-1, will next head to USC.
More Division II Athletes of Honor:
Clayton Andrews (Maria Carrillo, Santa Rosa) basketball, baseball
Kris Bubic (Archbishop Mitty, San Jose) football, baseball
Brad Bussard (Ceres) football, baseball
Sheldon Croney (Ridgeview, Bakersfield) football, basketball
Joe DeMers (College Park, Pleasant Hill) baseball
Jake Foscalina (Livermore) soccer, baseball
Brian Gadsby (Crescenta Valley, La Crescenta) football, baseball
Alec Gamboa (Madera) football, baseball
Quenten Pounds (Cypress) football, basketball, track
Jacob Solomon (Dublin) golf
Anthony Valencia (St. John Bosco, Bellflower) wrestling
Zahid Valencia (St. John Bosco, Bellflower) wrestling
DIVISION III SCHOOLS:
Lars Nootbaar (El Segundo) Football, Baseball
“I’m just a 17-year-old kid in high school and want to do as much as possible,” Nootbaar told Eric Sondheimer of the L.A. Times back in November and that he did. Nootbaar showed off his impressive arm on the football field and on the baseball diamond for the Eagles. Passing for 2,498 yards and 31 touchdowns with just three interceptions, he led the way for an 11-0 start to the season before the Eagles suffered their lone loss. On the baseball diamond, however, is where he committed to USC after his sophomore season that saw him hit .485 with 27 runs batted in. This season, Nootbaar hit .438 and had 27 runs batted in and eight home runs. He finished his prep career with 6,790 yards and 77 TD passes as a quarterback while in baseball he had 132 hits, 73 runs batted in and 13 home runs.
More Division III Athletes of Honor:
Dominic Davis (Alemany, Mission Hills) football, track
Ben Hallock (Harvard-Westlake, North Hollywood) water polo
Johnny Hooper (Harvard-Westlake, North Hollywood) water polo
Peter Lambert (San Dimas) baseball
Keisean Lucier-South (Lutheran, Orange) football, basketball
Ivan Rabb (Bishop O’Dowd, Oakland) basketball
Adam Remotto (Campolindo, Moraga) football, baseball
C.J. Sanders (Notre Dame, Sherman Oaks) football, track
Austin Tamagno (Brea Olinda, Brea) cross country, track
Kaleb Wilson (Serra, Gardena) football, basketball
DIVISION IV SCHOOLS:
Ron Smith (St. Mary’s, Berkeley) Football, Track
Starting his senior year by being named to our All-State Small Schools football team, Smith ended it with a CIF state title in the triple jump on his very last jump. Sitting in third place after five jumps, Smith hit the board squarely and went 49 feet and one-quarter inch to finish in first-place. It’s unknown whether Smith will continue to perform in any track events in college because he will concentrate on playing football in the fall at San Diego State. His 49-0 ¼ mark in the state meet triple jump was not a surprise. Earlier in the season, he reached out to a wind-aided 49-3, which at the time was announced as the top mark in the state. Considered by some as a three star recruit as a safety, Smith committed to the Aztecs back in December.
More Division IV Athletes of Honor:
Tyler Dorsey (Maranatha, Sierra Madre) basketball
Randy Post (Sutter) football, baseball
Justice Shelton-Mosley (Capital Christian, Sacramento) football, basketball
James Terrell (St. Patrick-St. Vincent, Vallejo) football, baseball
Caleb Webb (Big Bear, Big Bear Lake) cross country, track
DIVISION V SCHOOLS:
Sam Metcalf (Farmersville) Football, Basketball, Baseball
While Folsom’s Jake Browning was receiving most of the attention on a statewide and national level last fall for prolific passing totals, this senior also was capping off a remarkable high school career of his own. Metcalf wound up with a four-year career total of 11,913 yards, which is good for second all-time in state history and will get a permanent spot in our Cal-Hi Sports State Record Book. While his numbers this season were down a little bit from his junior year he passed for 3,360 yards and 42 touchdowns with just six interceptions. He also finished his career with 140 touchdown passes and a spot on our All-State Football Small Schools team. Metcalf followed that up with 9.7 points and 8.0 rebounds per game on the basketball court. Then in baseball for the second year in a row he helped Farmersville reach the CIF Central Section Division VI championship game and he was the co-player of the year in the East Sierra League. Metcalf will play football next year at Minnesota State University of Moorhead.
More Division V Athletes of Honor:
Grant Dragmire (Bradshaw Christian, Sacramento) football, baseball
Tannier Gallion (Fall River, McArthur) football, basketball, baseball
Dalton Gallis (Kern Valley, Lake Isabella) football, basketball
Nico Hoerner (Head-Royce, Oakland) baseball
Kasey Knevelbaard (Immanuel, Reedley) cross country, track
THREE-SPORT ATHLETE OF THE YEAR:
Brandon Presley (Great Oak, Temecula)
We started this honor just last year as a nod to those who have made the tough choice of participating on three separate teams for their school. Following Orinda Miramonte’s Drew Anderson from 2013-14 is Presley as this year’s honoree. All you need to know about Presley is that the Riverside Press-Enterprise recently voted him as its Athlete of the Year in what was basically a tie with Vista Murrieta track superstar Michael Norman. We decided essentially to pick them both with Norman as our State Junior Athlete of the Year and Presley as the top athlete in the three-sport category. In football, the UNLV-bound recruit had 88 catches for 1,467 yards and 21 TDs for a team that reached the CIF Southern Section West Valley Division semifinals. He followed up with 9.9 points, 4.6 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game in basketball and was second team all-league. In track, Presley clocked 10.83 seconds in the 100-meter dash and ran a leg for Great Oak’s 4×100 relay team was made it to the CIFSS Division I finals.
Thanks to Stockton office assistant editor Paul Muyskens for contributions on this post. Mark Tennis is the co-founder and publisher of CalHiSports.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Don’t forget to follow Mark on the Cal-Hi Sports Twitter handle: @CalHiSports