2009 East Bay Prep Athletes of the Year

So, it’s that time of year again. What was once known as the Times Top 100 has now expanded to include our entire East Bay coverage area. Thus, we ring in the completion of the 2008-09 season with the 2009 East Bay Prep Athletes of the Year list. Our prep staff from around the East Bay combined to pick the team. You get 110 now, and the remaining 20 will be added next week.

Here’s the link to this year’s list. The flash presentation is courtesy of Ray Saint Germain, and the list will hit the newspaper tomorrow. So, you blog followers get the first peek. Enjoy.

2009 East Bay Prep Athletes of the Year (updated 6/4)

Also, if you’d like to re-visit last year’s list, you can click here.

Ben Enos

  • EBAL Dad

    Ben, not sure who to let know, but that is not a picture of Christian Jones on the link….

  • EBAL Dad

    Never mind…it was fixed!

  • Bob Who?

    How could Richard Johnson, the shortstop for the Arroyo Dons, not be named a top athlete?

  • PrepBBFan

    What about Ryan Rodriguez? He was the MVP of the BVAL for football.

  • tycity23

    Where’s James King? If not better than he is just as good as Diante Jackson in the DFAL

  • ss396

    It’s a subjective list compiled by a few reporters who might have seen these athletes play a couple of games.
    This year, reporting staff was cut back, live coverage at the games was cut back, and the coverage area has been increased. It’s an impossible task and unfortunately, every year dozens of deserving athletes are left out.

  • WaitWhat??

    The Allard girl at Deer Valley is the most dominating two-sport player I have seen. Has a D-1 ride to Northwestern for softball I believe.

  • Xs and O

    As good as Jackson? At what?

  • Gregory Blake

    I find it hard to believe that there wasn’t a single athlete from Dublin High School
    on the East Bay Athletes of the year. With both a Wrestling and a Golf team on the Mens side and a Womens Basketball team that nearly went undefeated in league and runner-up in north coast you could not find a single athlete deserving of the honor.I think your high school sports department better spend more time in the Tri-Valley area.

  • Fastpitch fan

    There are plenty of arguments regarding who is not on the list, and I believe each school should be represented on the list.

    That said, each student-athlete selected is very deserving of the recognition as witnessed by each write-up.

    Kudos to all student-athletes.

  • Jim Gentile



  • Skyline Alum

    All this bickering over Tri-Valley athletes not getting enough recognition.?!! The entire OAL got FOUR athletes (out of 110) even though it’s widely recognized as one of the top leagues in the East Bay. Nor-Cal champions, Trans-Bay titles, Division 1 state title contenders, fantastic athletes at every school. Where is the love for the OAL?

  • DIII

    Albany High does not have one athlete mentioned.

  • miss percepcion

    Its great to hear from Jim Gentile who gave many of us some great moments some years ago. Martinez! Still the home of All-Stars.

  • Ken

    Nikki Gentile is a stud(ette).Saw her play twice.Gotta go with the granddad on that one.And I am NOT a Alhambra dad.Best hitter in DFAL.

  • ErnDog

    If that is the GREAT Jim Gentile of Sacred Heart High (San Fran) and outstanding pro with the Baltimore Orioles, so very glad to have you in the blog.

    Now, on to business. WHO THE HECK IS PUTTING THIS LIST TOGETHER??? If Richard Johnson (Arroyo) and Vince Bruno (Clayton Valley) aren’t part of your Top 100 East Bay Prep Athletes of the Year, then your list simply has no level of credibility…AT ALL!!

  • EBAL Fan

    yes i agree, there should be a couple arroyo people up there saying about half of their team is D-1 ready. pitchers can be D-1 or 2 and there infield is outstanding. This shows how much people know around here in the eastbay. Albany has no one even up there. WOW me being a EBAL parent, i watched many H.A.A.L games this year and by far there are some studs.

  • Prep Fan

    I’m thinking that Billy Wardell (10-1 Freedom), Chaz Meadows (11-1 CV), Andew Kjar (10-2 Miramonte) and George Atkinson III (NCS 100 & 200 champ Granada) will all be locks for 4 of the remaining spots after their sterling performances in the clutch at the NCS championships yesterday.

  • ErnDog

    EBAL Fan, thanks for the support. Now lets see what level of respect is given to Arroyo in the final East Bay rankings.

  • miss percepcion

    Bishop O’Dowds pitcher Rachel Nersesian should receive recognition. Smart pitcher…incredible bat control… possibly the most impressive pure player around.

  • mr sport

    The top 130 east bay athletes list wouldn’t be complete without VERONICA KERSTEN from Pinole Valley the NCS DIV. II champs. After all she led the spartans with great pitching as well as clutch hitting including a suicide squeeze against a tough Concord team in the bottom of the 8th inn. to get P.V. into the championship game and pitched seven scoreless innings in the NCS CHAMPIONSHIP GAME. She had some impressive stats as well: .49 ERA , 141 k’s , 16-2 record , .552 batting avg. , 29 RBI’s , 8 Doubles , and 4 HR . Not bad for a pitcher huh? Ben, i hope you consider her for the selection of the rest of the top 130 athletes . Thanks. -mr sport

  • groundskeeper

    You can look at last years list and see that a whole lot of top athletes were left off. For instance there was not one athlete from Arroyo’s NCS runner up baseball team. So I wouldn’t give any credibility to this list. It’s either biased or they need to add about 50-100 more athletes.

  • Prep Fan

    How does Ryan Rodriguez not make this list when he was the BVAL MVP?

  • Prep Fan

    Original Prep Fan: Billy Wardell deserves it more than Ryan, but both should be listed.

  • ErnDog

    Groundskeeper, you are 100% on point. Like I said on an earlier blog, lets’ see if schools to the west of the hills get the level of acknowledgement they are entitled to based on their talent and achievement.

  • ss396

    It will be interesting to see how many of the athletes who have advocates posting on this blog get added to this list.

  • freedom fan

    Billy Wardell is in the top 250 Draft picks in the nation,BVAL MVP for Baseball. Went to John Muir after NCS Championship had 19 stiches above left eye brow and would not come out of game in the second inning,he deserves to be on that list.

  • Folks,
    One note about last year’s list is that was before the operations of the Contra Costa Times and the former ANG were fully merged, so that banquet was strictly the Times banquet and only athletes from the Times coverage area were selected. That’s why no one from Arroyo was on there and why you don’t see athletes from the Oakland, Hayward and Fremont areas in there (Piedmont and Alameda are exceptions because the Times has small weekly papers there and Castro Valley is an exception because the Valley Times circulates into CV). This is the first banquet that encompasses the whole East Bay.

  • BSAL fan


    It is interesting that this list follows the limited coverage that is given to most schools on the west side of the hills. For an athlete like Jordan Wilder that excelled in two sports(Football and Baseball) at St. Mary’s not to be included shows there is not balanced coverage.

  • Anyone else tired of parents complaining that their athlete wasn’t selected to the list? Notice that the top athletes have created visibility from their achievements. If your athlete wasn’t selected… get over it.

  • Billyboy

    Jillian Bush was MVP of both the Monte Vista Volleyball and Lacrosse teams in 2008-09. The MV lacrosse team is nationlly ranked, finished 3rd in the final CA poll, and was 19-0 against NCS teams. She was named an academic all american in 2007-08 and is a slam dunk for 1st team all american in lacrosse for 2008-09. Anyway, if you want to add a lacrosse athlete who excelled in multiple sports and the classroom, I nominate her.

  • Softball fan

    I agree get it straight. I am sure all the athletes listed on this string are good but this is ridiculous. If any of the athletes mentioned above get selected, I hope it has nothing to do with the grandstanding that was done. As with any list, there will be a lot of excellent players that won’t make it.

  • Thank you Softball Fan.
    There was a recent golfer in the MVAL that won the title two years in a row. What folks don’t realize is that his dad was the coach and the other golfers, many whom were much better, didn’t get an opportunity to excel because daddy plowed the way for his son. Without his dad “fixing” the odds, his son probably would not have even been on the varsity. I like the current method of selection for the East Bay Athletes of the Year. The real athletes rise to the top because they earned it. That’s the way it should be.

  • KIsstheRing

    My only gripe with the list is, if this is a list of the top ATHLETES in the Bay, then I believe that 2 and 3 sport athletes should constitute the bulk of the nominations. A kid can be trained to play a sport but athletes are special.

  • Tom Meyer

    congrats to all the athletes.With the updated list out and the EBAL with 51 winners out of 130. I’m sure there is no bias from the writers!!!

  • James

    You don’t need to see a list to know the writers are bias… just read all the post about EBAL coaches quitting. I for one don’t care at all, are there no other stories or districts to write about? =p

  • Guest

    There is no need to gripe about people left of the list because the reporters are bias and incompetent so they can’t be expected to compile a respected and true list of the areas best athletes.

  • sbmom

    face it, it’s who you know and possibly being seen at the right place at the right time. My kid literally won games for our “undefeated team” not even getting a nod for the Precious “athlete of the week” for the weeks the wins really mattered..and then to get “honorable mention” for all league….Coach blames it on the “good ol boys” wont vote for his girls…thanks coach for representing ALL of your team, especially the girls that really deserved the recognition. Happily our last season with this political crap.

  • motherof2


    LOVE AND PEACE……….2009

  • No one will ever totally agree who should be on the list and who shouldn’t. I saw some athletes on the list I expected to be there and some I didn’t. The athletes who I thought would be on the list but weren’t are still just as talented to me as they were before the “list” came out. I would never tell my kid to bank his whole worth on whether or not he was on “one list”. Congratulations to all the athletes on the list. I would like to see a list of all the scholar athletes. That would be way more interesting to me.

  • Is there a “Loser Mom of the Year” award?
    I know who’d I’d vote for…

    “my kid literally won games for our undefeated team…
    there were no other players on the field, just my little boy slaying all the dragons and saving the princess with his bare hands all by himself”.

    Come on mom, get a life.

  • bigchisel

    How is Mario Brown not on this list?…. he ran for almost 2000 yards…

  • james

    because he would take someone’s spot from the EBAL… duh. =p

  • DV’s Varsity girls Basketball coach needs to find a new job. They glorified Allard for some reason. She did not do n e thing any of the other girls could not have done if allowed! All the plays were called for her, soe y would the others not shut down? Where was she wen it was really time to play,in the playoffs, who stepped up? Lindsey Wisely find another job, learn how to teach to play as a WHOLE TEAM and not show your ass, learn to give others opportunities, this girl was already going to NW on baseball. You lost alot of respect from your peers because of your selfish ways this year. Lets see what you do for your real star this year!

  • Guest

    Very funny James and possibly true. Thats what the paper is lovers of the EBAL.

  • Tom Meyer

    hahaha it would have been one of the few MVAL athletes

  • EBAL Fan

    James, Guest — truth hurts, doesn’t it…..take all the sports where there’s NCS competition, give points for how the teams finish and the EBAL is leaps and bounds the best league, year in and out….hate all you want, but there are more great athletes from the EBAL — that’s a fact, plain and simple. Doesn’t mean there’s not some seasational athletes from other leagues, there’s just more from the EBAL…learn to live with it fellas.

  • I accept that there may be some perceived inbalance in the strengths of the leagues. I consider the overall skill set of the EBAL is superior to the rest of the east bay. We played several other baseball leagues and only Irvington from the MVAL seemed to compete with the EBAL. That kid Tella is pretty darn good. The team also had some powerful bats. Something like 3 guys hit a combined 25 homeruns. They had a big strong kid hit a mile shot HR against us that still might not have come down. Someone said he had a .500 batting average too. He also had the best catcher’s arm I have ever seen. I only saw Tella’s name on the list, so I know this other kid isn’t on the list, but that catcher might be the best baseball player to ever come through this area.

  • The Irvington catcher’s name is TJ Meyer. He led the MVAL in homeruns.

  • Guest

    I’m not dissing the EBAL because they do Have great athletes who I have played against in my high school years. I’m just saying the paper thinks they are the only league that is worth giving big press to. There are other leagues with players just as good, maybe not as many, but just as good that get constantly overlooked.