NorCal/SoCal Players of the Week

Two of this week’s NorCal/SoCal Players of the Week are Billy Duby of Orinda Miramonte and Jayda Su’e of Wilmington Banning. Photos: Courtesy family & @JamaalStreet / Twitter.com.


Both of our NorCal honorees for this week threw no-hitters, one in softball with 19 strikeouts and one in baseball against a team that was in our State Top 20 two weeks ago. For Southern California, a slugger got the nod in softball with a three-homer game while it was pitching and hitting combined for baseball.

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Note: For these honors, we consider CIF Central Section players for Northern California. To nominate someone by 12 noon on most Mondays, email markjtennis@gmail.com.

Cal-Hi Sports Northern California
Baseball Player of the Week

Billy Duby
(Miramonte, Orinda) Sr.

The Central Contra Costa County area of the CIF North Coast Section is where we visit first to pick our NorCal baseball honoree this week.

There certainly was nothing dubious about the performance of Duby last week in a pitcher’s duel in which he got the best of against Diablo–Valley League rival Acalanes of Lafayette.

We were literally right in the middle of sending out this week’s player picks when this nomination came in just after 1 a.m. on Tuesday morning and made us switch. Besides, the way Duby took to his duty on the mound against Acalanes, we had to make the switch.

Acalanes came into the game 9-2 and has been a team in our State Top 20 due to a win over 18-4 Clovis West, but by the time Duby was done with the Dons they were 9-3 and his Matadors improved to 9-4-2 after the 6-foot-3 right-hander finished off the hosts by pounding the strike zone for a no-hitter. Duby had an efficient 86-pitch complete game performance with seven strikeouts, including striking out the final batter of a 2-1 victory. Billy was ready with the bat as well after going 1-for-2 with a single and a walk.

Duby was a key member of last year’s team at Miramonte that was undefeated and state-ranked all season before a loss to Drake of San Anselmo in the CIF North Coast Section D3 championship. Duby had a shutout pitching win earlier this season against Vacaville.

Cal-Hi Sports Northern California
Softball Player of the Week

Ilona Sullivan
(King’s Academy, Sunnyvale) Jr.

It’s off to the CIF Central Coast Section and Santa Clara County for this week’s NorCal softball winner.

When the nomination for Sullivan came in last week we couldn’t tell the nominator it was a slam dunk, but after looking things over there really wasn’t another performance in Northern California that came close.

Sullivan certainly had fun in a 3-0 win over a very solid Notre Dame of Belmont after pitching a no-hitter with two walks preventing her from pitching a perfect game.

However, even though she did not get a perfecto, the Knights’junior struck out 19 of the 23 batters she faced in a spectacular outing in the circle.

Ilona also wasn’t too bad with aluminum in hand as she led King’s Academy with two hits in three at-bats with a run scored.

Although the performance by Sullivan was amazing, it doesn’t make the Cal-Hi Sports Record book since over a dozen girls have struck out 21 in a 7-inning game. The record for a 7-inning game is 22 strikeouts by Blenda Selvey of Ontario Chaffey in a 1983 game against St. Lucy’s of Glendora.

Ilona Sullivan of The King’s Academy shows off her pitching form. Photo: BeRecruited.com.

Cal-Hi Sports Southern California
Baseball Player of the Week

Erik Tolman
(El Toro, Lake Forest) Sr.

For this week’s SoCal Baseball Player of the Week, we go to Orange County to honor a pitcher and slugger from El Toro.

The way Tolman was tossing the baseball took its toll on the opponents in a 4-2 victory last week over a Mission Viejo team that was coming off a 2-1 loss to state No. 1 Valley Christian in the Hard 9 National Classic title game.

All Tolman did was toss a 1-hitter with 12 strikeouts and two walks in the El Toro win, and not surprisingly, this wasn’t the first time the bell has tolled for an opponent with Tolman on the mound.

In a season-opening 2-0 victory over Placentia El Dorado, the El Toro senior started things off like a bull in a china shop and even got some ink from Los Angeles Times prep scribe Eric Sondheimer. Tolman pretty much did it all by striking out eight in five shutout innings and he provided all the offense by hitting two solo home runs.

Tolman, who was a standout on last year’s CIF Southern Section Division I championship team, was being looked to by El Toro faithful to be this year’s team leader and he has not let them down. He has committed to Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.

Cal-Hi Sports Southern California
Softball Player of the Week

Jayda Su’e
(Banning, Wilmington) Sr.

The destination is the Los Angeles City Section for this week’s SoCal Softball Player of the Week, and it appears we have a good one.

We’re not sure how Jayda pronounces her last name but if it’s anything like what Arkansas Razorbacks fans scream when their team does something great we’ll take a stab at it and say that after what Su’e did in a 21-0 win over Gardena last week we’ll shout out “Sooie.”

All Su’e did was blast three home runs with a walk, and Jayda also plated nine runners and scored three times herself.

We realize Gardena probably isn’t that great but the Cal State Fullerton-bound standout has done well against all types of competition for the 15-5 Pilots.

So far this season, Su’e is hitting .429 with 12 home runs and 27 runs batted in with 18 runs scored. An interesting twist is she has 18 hits and 12 have left the yard. Also, the 12 home runs is the top reported mark in the state.

Harold Abend is the associate editor of CalHiSports.com and the vice president of the California Prep Sportswriters Association. He can be reached at marketingharoldabend@gmail.com. Don’t forget to follow him on Twitter: @HaroldAbend


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