The fall high school sports season traditionally emphasizes football. But numerous other student athletes have earned the respect and admiration of their peers, opposing coaches and fans alike, and were recently named to the Fall 2008 All-BVAL teams in their respective sports.
Boys: Most Valuable Player Wyatt Landrum, Liberty.
Liberty's Wyatt Landrum was arguably the most decorated athlete in the county during the fall season. He began the XC season in September by taking first in the 2008 Ed Sias Cross Country Invitational, Large School V Division in a course-record 9:55.70. The Lion senior, struggling with a case of the flu, then placed fourth at the California Interscholastic Federation Division II boys state cross country championship.
First Team: Ryan DeVito, Deer Valley; Nate Baker, Deer Valley; Devin Carter, Liberty; Paul Matejcek, Deer Valley; Nathaniel Wilson, Deer Valley; Thomas Plowright, Liberty; and Tyree Mack, Antioch.
Second Team: Joseph Duke, Liberty; Hunter Pruett, Deer Valley; Jordan DeVito, Deer Valley; Chris Slatten, Antioch; Kevin Wunderly, Deer Valley; Eric Morford, Heritage; Dane Crabtree, Antioch; and Grant Hullen, Liberty.
Girls: Most Valuable Player Stephanie Siemens, Deer Valley.
Freshman Stephanie Siemens of Deer Valley was the league's top girls cross-country runner for 2008. She burst onto the scene in at the league's Center Meet in September by winning from start to finish in a time of 21:42, and completed her year with an 11th place finish in the NCS Division 1 finals, just missing out on the state finals with an outstanding time of 18:55 over the three-mile course at Hayward High School last month.
First Team: Jamira Cox, Deer Valley; Finona James, Deer Valley; Chizoba Okadogbe, Deer Valley; Carmen Martinez, Freedom; Rebecca Beard, Heritage; Cora Williams, Liberty; Cathy Kutsuris, Liberty; and Lydia, Padou, Freedom.
Second Team: Cynthia Aguielera, Liberty; Marcie Torres, Pittsburg; Veronica Regalado, Antioch; Amanda Dwyer, Antioch; Jennifer Gray, Freedom; Laura Crabtree, Antioch; Alicia Zapata, Antioch; and Sandra Freeman, Antioch.
Girls: Most Valuable Player Caitlin Risden, Deer Valley.
Led in water polo by Caitlin Risden, the Lady Wolverines won the BVAL title with a 20-4 record, good enough for a 14th seed in the 2008 NCS championships. Deer Valley advanced to the second round of the tournament this year, where it fell to Miramonte in a tough battle.
First Team: Abby Lange, Liberty; Rianna Zavala, Liberty; Sara Roeder, Freedom; Chelsea Doench, Freedom; Courtney Risden, Deer Valley; Michelle Robbins, Deer Valley; and Samantha Lucky, Deer Valley.
Second Team: Meghan Donohue, Deer Valley; Taylor Henry, Freedom; Amanda Jennings, Freedom; Jessica Fearnley, Heritage; Jenny Wheable, Heritage; Kianna Gendotti, Liberty; Kaitlyn Holmstead, Liberty; and Kyla Robinson, Deer Valley.
Honorable Mention: Krystle Talons, Deer Valley; Melissa Holmes, Antioch; Pamela Yeshewas, Freedom; Hannah Piercy, Freedom; Katie Harris, Heritage; Katie Dolan, Heritage; Lindsay Hull, Liberty; and Elizabeth Day, Liberty.
Boys: Most Valuable Player Aaron Wayne, Deer Valley.
The Wolverines boys water polo team also enjoyed a successful season in the pool in 2008, led by Aaron Wayne. Like the ladies, the boys team advanced to the second round and was defeated by Miramonte.
First Team: Keaton Lynn, Freedom; Nick Moffat, Deer Valley; Nick Araujo, Heritage, Ben Keisic, Heritage; Justin Stafford, Freedom; Trevor Dobbins, Deer Valley; and Cyrus Blankenship, Heritage.
Second Team: Chris Smith, Deer Valley; Spencer Dobbins, Deer Valley; Zach Hanson, Heritage; Nick Mesina, Freedom; Weyum Englund, Heritage; Jake Peterson, Heritage; Nik Brix, Heritage; and Brett Carusle, Heritage.
First Team Offense: Most Valuable Player Quarterback Ryan Rodriguez, Freedom.
Freedom senior quarterback Ryan Rodriguez helped lead the Falcons to a 9-1 regular season record. Freedom advanced to the second round of the 2008 NCS Division I tournament, where it fell to Foothill. Rodriguez finished the regular season with 3,034 passing yards and 33 touchdowns, plus 535 rushing yards and eight touchdowns.
Running backs Cameron Gupton, Freedom; and Traisean Alexander, Deer Valley. Wide receiver Roman Runner, Freedom. Tight end Jason Dewberry, Deer Valley. Offensive linemen Justin Mariolle, Heritage; Mike Carbone, Freedom; Michael Diaz, Liberty; and Haapi Malu, Deer Valley. Utility player Rasjeon Hines, Antioch.
First Team Defense: Most Valuable Player Emeka Williams, Pittsburg. Defensive lineman Steven Hill, Antioch; Linebackers Robert Turner, Deer Valley; Matt Enos, Heritage; and Marcel Warren, Antioch. Defensive backs Cody Peebles, Freedom; and Cameron Gupton, Freedom.
Second Team Offense
Running backs Nate Humphrey, Liberty; Adam Leines, Liberty; and Tevin Dones, Antioch. Wide receivers Cody Peebles, Freedom; and Rasjeon Hines, Antioch. Tight end Nolan Roe, Liberty. Offensive linemen Casey O'Hara, Heritage; Carrington Reyes, Heritage; Steven Hill, Antioch; James Parsons, Freedom; and Daniel Hansen, Deer Valley.
Second Team Defense
Defensive linemen Joe Malolo, Deer Valley; Tuungasipa Fisiliahii, Deer Valley; and Cody Juarez, Freedom. Linebackers Jeff Hendricks, Freedom; Jaime Juaregui, Antioch; Zach Ternes, Freedom; Taylor Cook, Deer Valley; and Phillip Farmer, Deer Valley. Defensive backs Derryle Jackson, Deer Valley; Antonio Johnson, Liberty; Ryan Rodriguez, Freedom; and Cameron Curran, Heritage.
The Bay Valley Athletic League sent all but one of its schools to the NCS tournament this season, and the Pirates of Pittsburg advanced all the way to the NCS finals. Led by senior LB Emeka Williams, who garnered the BVAL Defensive MVP for 2008, Pittsburg will face off against perennial powerhouse De LaSalle tonight.
Most Valuable Player Lauren Conder, Heritage.
After opening its doors four years ago, Heritage already has its first sports MVP: Lauren Conder. Lauren proved her worth at the NCS South Qualifier by tying for second with a round of 74 at Deer Ridge Country Club. At the NCS Tournament of Champions, Conder shot an 84, good enough for third place in her group, and the lowest score posted by any BVAL player in this year's tournament.
First Team: Brittany Edwards, Deer Valley; Ysabel Cabreira, Freedom; Victoria Leon, Deer Valley; Haley Edwards, Deer Valley; Kastyn Sugimoto, Liberty; Maddison LeRoy, Freedom; and Kelsey Cast, Antioch.
Second Team: Allie Isaacson, Deer Valley; Lei Wei, Liberty; Caitlyn Rumel, Antioch; Alyssa DiVincent; Liberty; Morgan Hernandez, Liberty; Jennifer Wang, Deer Valley; and Sarah White, Freedom.
Most Valuable Player Sarah Osborn, Freedom.
Freedom's Sarah Osborn finished the regular season with an outstanding 19-4 match record, and earned a trip to the NCS Girls Tennis Singles Championships at St. Mary's College in Moraga in November.
First Team: Perla Klenk-Sanchez, Deer Valley; Amber Basore, Freedom; Lauren Mass, Freedom; Michelle Mucha, Heritage; and Megan Ward, Heritage.
Second Team: Victoria Seyoum, Heritage; Arlesha Samuda, Heritage; Lauren Parlett, Heritage; Karin Dizon, Heritage; Emma Fisher, Freedom; and Nicole Zannarini, Freedom.
Most Valuable Player Iris Tolenada, Deer Valley.
Iris Tolenada led the Lady Wolverines to the league title this season as Deer Valley compiled a regular season record of 36-4. Deer Valley was a No. 1 seed in the NCS Division I tournament bracket, but was upset in the third round by Granada.
First Team: Sandra Foster, Deer Valley; Elyse Rowland, Deer Valley; Jenna Siegfried, Liberty; Colleen Tague, Liberty; Brianna Swisher, Heritage; Krystal McCoy, Deer Valley; Kara Stark, Deer Valley; Krissy Stalf, Freedom; Courtney Casey, Heritage; and Hanna Tague, Liberty.
Second Team: Elise Antrobus, Antioch; Jessica Ulloa, Antioch; Jamie Wilding, Deer Valley; Tiana Rubin, Freedom; Haley Kavanaugh, Heritage; LaShelle Rullan, Heritage; Dianna Morales, Liberty; and Heather Alatab, Liberty.
Honorable Mention: Sabrina Dunbar and Erica LaFrades.