Campolindo’s Sterling Strother commits to Yale

Campolindo High football lineman Sterling Strother announced via Twitter this afternoon that he has orally committed to Yale.

“After much consideration, I’m very proud to say that I will continue to pursue my academic and athletic interests at Yale University,” he wrote.

Strother was a first-team all-Diablo Foothill Athletic League selection at guard last year as a junior. He helped the Cougars pass for 3,768 yards and rush for 3,239 yards in their 16-0 California Interscholastic Federation Division III state championship season.

According to espn.com, the 6-foot-5, 250-pound Strother had received offers from Cal, Colorado, Fresno State, Kansas, Utah, Vanderbilt and Washington State, among other schools.


Moreau Catholic’s Brandon Lawrence commits to Fresno State

Moreau Catholic boys basketball player Brandon Lawrence announced on Twitter this weekend that he has orally committed to Fresno State.

“I’m blessed to announce that I have decided that I will attend Fresno State University and play in the Mountain West Conference,” Lawrence wrote.

As a 6-foot-3 junior guard last season for Moreau Catholic, Lawrence averaged 10.4 points per game and was named honorable-mention All-Mission Valley Athletic League.


De La Salle lacrosse coach retires

De La Salle High School announced today that longtime lacrosse coach Bob O’Meara is retiring. He brought lacrosse to the school in 2001, when it started as a club team. The program won four North Coast Section titles (2007, 2008, 2010, 2014) and reached the Division I semifinals last season, finishing with a 13-7 record. The squad has reached at least the NCS playoff semifinal round in each of the past 11 seasons. In the past 12 seasons, O’Meara compiled a 191-67 overall record.


My selections for all-EB boys and girls track coaches

Here are my picks for East Bay Track and Field Coach of The Year for boys and girls:
PETER SCARPELLI, Amador Valley — Scarpelli’s squad won the North Coast Section Meet of Champions title by six points and qualified both relay teams and two individuals to the CIF state championships. His squad also won the East Bay Athletic League title. and was second by nine points in the NCS Tri-Valley area championships.
BERNARD STEPHENS, Deer Valley — Stephens’ team peaked strongly at the end of the season, with three top-five finishes at the CIF state track and field championships and a tie for sixth as a team. The Wolverines placed second at the NCS Meet of Champions and the NCS Tri-Valley area championships.


Rei, Mathias, Jackson, Davis, Romero selected in MLB draft

Five college players with East Bay high school ties were picked today in the second day of the Major League baseball draft.

Austin Rei, a Campolindo graduate, was selected in the third round by Boston with the 81st pick. The University of Washington catcher batted .330 this past season with seven home runs, 20 RBIs and 14 runs scored.

Mark Mathias, an Irvington grad, was also picked in the third round. The Cal Poly second baseman, who went 93rd to Cleveland, batted .356 this past season with 72 hits, 28 RBIs, 42 runs scored and nine steals.

Drew Jackson, who graduated from Miramonte, went in the fifth round to Seattle with the 155th selection. The Stanford shortstop batted .320 this past season with 47 hits, 27 runs scored and nine RBI.

Andre Davis, a Redwood Christian graduate who also played at Chabot College, was drafted by Kansas City in the eighth round with the 249th pick. A left-handed pitcher, he had a 2-1 record with a 2.22 earned run average and 29 strikeouts in 24 1/3 innings pitched this past season at University of Arkasas-Pine Bluff.

Pierce Romero, a Washington-Fremont graduate, was selected in the ninth round by Arizona with the 256th pick. As a sophomore pitcher at Santa Barbara Community College this past season, Romero had a record of 2-0 with a 5.50 ERA and 17 strikeouts in 18 innings pitched.



College Park baseball named State Team of the Year

For the first time in 32 years, CalHiSports has named an East Bay team its State Baseball Team of the Year

College Park, the North Coast Section Division I champion, has earned that honor. In an article on the CalHiSports.com web site, Mark Tennis wrote that the biggest factor in College Park’s move from No. 3 to No. 1 in the state in their final rankings was a head-to-head win over St. Francis-Mountain View. Another huge factor was that College Park avenged its regular-season loss to De La Salle by beating the Spartans in the NCS Division I championship game last Saturday, Tennis said. The Falcons (26-4 overall) also beat two CIF section champs this season – St. Francis and Elk Grove.

Before College Park, the last East Bay team to earn CalHiSports State Team of the Year was El Cerrito in 1983.

Also, the Falcons’ Joe DeMers was selected to the All-USA baseball first team by USA Today.  DeMers finished an outstanding senior season with a 13-1 pitching record, an 0.51 earned run average, and 103 strikeouts in 96 innings pitched. He walked only 10 batters and had five shutouts and two saves. He also batted .447 with six home runs, 44 RBIs, 26 runs scored and 16 doubles this past season.
DeMers was selected as the Gatorade California Baseball Player of the Year in late May.


De La Salle names new basketball coach

A.J. Kuhle has been hired as De La Salle High’s new basketball coach, the school announced this afternoon.
A 2000 graduate of De La Salle, Kuhle spent the past eight seasons as an assistant coach at the University of Denver. The squad had an overall record of 146-132 during that span.
Prior to that, he spent three years as an assistant coach at Air Force. A 2004 graduate of the Academy, he was a four-year letter-winner and a three-year starter at Air Force.
Kuhle was named the team’s Most Valuable Player as a senior co-captain after helping the Falcons to 22 victories and its first NCAA Tournament appearance in 42 years. He was named second-team all-conference that season. Prior to his senior season, the Falcons had not had a winning season in 25 years.

“If you look at A.J’s pedigree … he’s been a true student athlete in every way during his playing days. He is a high-level Division I coach with experience,” De La Salle Athletic Director Leo Lopoz said. “We are blessed to get someone with his experience and caliber.”

At De La Salle, Kuhle replaces Frank Allocco, who is now the associate head men’s basketball coach at USF.

Allocco had a record of 487-71 at De La Salle in 18 seasons, and won CIF Division I state championships in 2000 and 2006 with the Spartans. Kuhle played on Allocco’s 2000 state championship team. Overall, Allocco had a 654-99 record in 24 seasons and three state championships.


DeMers named Gatorade state baseball POY

College Park High star Joe DeMers was named Gatorade California Baseball Player of the Year today.

The senior, who has signed with Washington and is projected as an early-round selection in next month’s Major League Baseball draft, is a force both on the mound and at the plate.

The 6-foot-2, 230-pound DeMers has a 10-1 pitching record this season with an earned run average of 0.44 and 84 strikeouts in 79 innings pitched with only seven walks. He has allowed only five earned runs.

At the plate, DeMers is batting .477 with six home runs, 41 RBIs and 25 runs scored.

DeMers is the first Bay Area selection for Gatorade State Baseball Player of the Year since Alhambra’s Robert Stephenson in 2011.

College Park (23-4) hosts Liberty on Friday in the quarterfinals of the North Coast Section Division I playoffs.


A look at the NCS softball brackets

A pair of East Bay Athletic League softball teams were selected as No. 1 seeds at the North Coast Section at-large and seeding meeting Sunday.
Amador Valley (21-3 overall), which has won 11 straight games and the EBAL title, was picked as the No. 1 seed in Division I. Livermore (15-9), which finished the regular season tied for fourth in the EBAL with Carondelet, is the No. 1 seed in Division II. Foothill (17-7) and Monte Vista (16-8), which finished second and third respectively in the EBAL, are the No. 6 and No. 7 seeds respectively in Division I.
Bishop O’Dowd (22-4), which won 14 of its last 16 regular-season games, is the No. 1 seed in the Division III softball playoffs. The Dragons’ only losses during that span were to Castro Valley (21-5), the No. 4 seed in Division I. Bishop O’Dowd beat Castro Valley 5-1 in the West Alameda County Conference championship game on May 21.
Other top-seeded squads in the NCS softball playoffs include Marin Catholic (21-3) in Division IV, Clear Lake (17-6) in Division V and Laytonville (12-9) in Division VI.
Here’s a link to all the first-round NCS baseball and softball playoff matchups: