NorCal/SoCal Players of the Week

This week’s NorCal player of the week is Spencer Torkelson from Casa Grande of Petaluma (a four-year starter). Meanwhile, SoCal softball player of the week Alexa Neil (No. 2) is shown in a photo with her team. Photos: Petaluma360.com & ramonahighathletics.com.


One of our choices this week is pitcher Jonathan Guardado from Nogales of La Puente, who threw his fourth no-hitter of the season and along with a pitcher from Sage Hill (Newport Beach) is just one away from tying state record. Our other honorees are from Petaluma, Porterville and Ramona.

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Note: For these honors, we consider CIF Central Section players for Northern California. To find out how your business could benefit by sponsoring these honors each week or to nominate someone by 12 noon on most Mondays, email markjtennis@gmail.com.

Cal-Hi Sports Northern California
Baseball Player of the Week

Spencer Torkelson (Casa Grande, Petaluma) Sr.

Committed to Arizona State, this four year varsity standout is making his senior season is his best one yet as he has improved all his numbers from the plate this season. Entering this week, Torkelson was hitting .491 with 29 runs batted in and five home runs.

With all five of his home runs coming during the month of April. he homered in his third straight game while also stealing a base, doubling and driving in three runs during a 13-2 win last week over Santa Rosa. Two days later, Torkelson went 3 for 3 on stolen base attempts and also went 3-for-4 with an RBI during a 9-3 win over Cardinal Newman of Santa Rosa.

In 100 varsity games played, he has hit for a .429 average with 87 runs batted in, 97 runs scored and nine home runs.

Cal-Hi Sports Northern California
Softball Player of the Week

Jessenia Castillo (Monache, Porterville) Jr.

This junior slugger had quite a week at the plate for the Marauders.

In her first game, Jessenia was 4-for-5 with six RBI, five runs scored, one homer and one doubles as Monache crushed city rival Porterville 19-1. Then in her second game, Castillo tied a school record by driving in eight runs in a 15-0 romp past Tulare. In that second game, she also scored three runs, hit two homers, added a double and finished 4-for-5.

A three-year varsity regular, Castillo only hit one homer as a sophomore with a .336 average. Heading into this week, she’s putting up more monstrous totals of nine homers, 47 RBI and a .552 batting mark.

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Cal-Hi Sports Southern California
Baseball Player of the Week

Jonathon Guardado (Nogales, La Puente) Sr.

There’s a pitcher in Southern California who doesn’t go to Sage Hill of Newport Beach who also is throwing no-hitters this season. While the Sage Hill duo of Brett Super and Ashwin Chona have combined for six no-hitters (four by Chona), Guardado also is twirling them for the Nobles. While generally speaking Nogales plays at a higher level of competition than Sage Hill due to competitive equity factors Sage Hill will be in a higher CIF Southern Section division this year than Nogales.

Still, Guardado has been fabulous for the Nobles this season. Like Chona, his four no-hitters this season will get into the state record book. They are both one short of the state record of five first set in 1957 by Tony Ankerson of Santa Ana Mater Dei and tied in 2010 by Stephen Perry of Maxwell.

The senior right-hander pitched his no-hitter last week and allowed just two walks while striking out 11 during a 14-0 five-inning over Workman of City of Industry. It was his second five-inning no-hitter against the Lobos this season as back in March he pitched his second straight no-hitter and third no-hitter of the season also during a 14-0 win.

Guardado’s two other no-hitters this season were a seven-inning no-hitter against Santiago of Garden Grove and a six-inning no-hitter against Azusa. On the year, he is 10-0 with a 0.25 ERA and has struck out 98 batters in 55.2 innings. Two years ago, his brother Anthony was drafted in the third round by the Atlanta Braves.

Cal-Hi Sports Southern California
Softball Player of the Week

Alexa Neil (Ramona) Jr.

After hitting just four home runs in each of her first two seasons, Neil is starting to flex her power during her junior season as she had three hits, including two solo home runs, during a 5-2 win last week over San Pasqual of Escondido.

For Neil, it was her first multi-homer game of the season but earlier this season she hit a home run in three straight games for the Bulldogs.

Earlier this week, Neil already drove in four runs and hit her 10th home run on the year during a 19-1 win over La Costa Canyon of Carlsbad. Along with her 10 home runs, she has hit for a .426 average with 28 runs batted in.

Neil has helped Ramona to a 23-4 record after the win over LCC, which is one of the best in the CIF San Diego Section.

Paul Muyskens is the Stockton office editor of Cal-Hi Sports. Mark Tennis is the co-founder and publisher of CalHiSports.com. He can be reached at markjtennis@gmail.com. Don’t forget to follow Mark on the Cal-Hi Sports Twitter handle: @CalHiSports


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