Intriguing Servite linebacker Harrison Cofell enrolls at St. John Bosco

Servite linebacker Harrison Cofell has enrolled at Trinity League rival St. John Bosco, the senior confirmed Tuesday.

The 5-foot-11, 210-pound Cofell joins a group of St. John Bosco linebackers led by Andrew Simpson and Benny Lockhart among others. Simpson (6-1, 215) has committed to Kansas.

USC-committed linebacker Ma’a Gaoteote would be another name to watch with the Braves’ linebackers but he has transferred to Bishop Gorman of Las Vegas.

Cofell’s strong offseason makes him an intriguing contender for key playing time with the reigning state and national champion. His highlights last season with the Friars included eight tackles in an early-season game against Bishop Gorman.

Another new St. John Bosco defender with Servite ties is junior safety Sione “Riz” Hala (6-3, 200). He impressed last season with Paramount in the CIF-SS Division 4 semifinals against San Juan Hills.

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Trinity League Football Podcast: Top offseason developments / The Miller Moss impact at Mater Dei

Please send football news to Dan Albano at dalbano@scng.com or @ocvarsityguy on Twitter of Instagram

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Angels schedule: Where the team will play in 2020 season

The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim will play against the Athletics to open the season on July 24.

July 24-27: at Athletics

July 28-30: vs. Mariners

July 31-Aug. 3: vs. Astros

Aug. 4-6: at Mariners

Aug. 7-9: at Rangers

Aug. 10-12: vs. Athletics

Aug. 14-16: at Angels

Aug. 17-18: vs. GiantsAug. 19-20: at Giants

Aug. 21-23: at Athletics

Aug. 24-27: at Astros

Aug. 28-31: vs. Mariners

Sept. 2-3: vs. Padres

Sept. 4-6: vs. Astros

Sept. 9-10: at Rangers

Sept. 11-13: at Rockies

Sept. 15-17: vs. Diamondbacks at Angels

Sept. 18-21: vs. Rangers

Sept. 22-23: at Padres

Sept. 25-27: at Dodgers

 

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UCLA’s AD Martin Jarmond faces many challenges with new job

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Most new athletic directors who take over in July have the luxury of getting acclimated to their new school before things really ramp up in two months. That isn’t going to be the case for the start of Martin Jarmond’s tenure at UCLA.

“You would like have something resembling normalcy, but I have to come in and embrace the challenges,” said Jarmond, who officially took the helm on Wednesday. “I’m not the only one going through what is an uncertain time.”

The 39-year old Jarmond was named UCLA’s first Black athletic director in May. He is also the first AD in the program’s 101-year history who has no prior ties to the university. He replaces Dan Guerrero, who led his alma mater for 18 years.

Jarmond, who was hired in Westwood after three years leading Boston College’s athletic department, has a lot on his plate. Not only is there trying to navigate 23 teams in 15 sports through the coronavirus pandemic, but there is the added challenge of Under Armour trying to terminate its record apparel contract with the university. The company informed UCLA last week of its intentions.

The two sides are four years into a 15-year deal worth $280 million, which remains the highest in college athletics. Under Armour pays $11 million per year in rights and marketing fees as well as contributing $2 million per year to aid in facility improvements. Under terms of the contract, the company is supposed to supply $6.85 million in athletic apparel, footwear and uniforms.

Jarmond reiterated last week’s statement that the matter is being evaluated by the university and its attorneys.

Under Armour cited the team’s struggles in its highest profile sports as a reason for ending the partnership. The football program has had a losing record four straight seasons, including a 7-17 mark in Chip Kelly’s first two seasons, which has led to declining attendance at the Rose Bowl. Men’s basketball struggled the first half of last season but won nine of its last 11 in Mick Cronin’s first season.

On-field performance though will eventually rise on Jarmond’s list of priorities. His first task is trying to make sure UCLA’s teams can return healthy once games begin. The campus started welcoming athletes in football and fall Olympic sports last week, beginning with testing before they could progress to offseason conditioning drills.

The NCAA recently approved a plan allowing for extended football and basketball workouts, but the county has not cleared UCLA for that timeline yet. The university reports that 75 members of the campus community have tested positive, but doesn’t specify whether they are athletes. This past week, 18 students and six staff members had positive tests.

When football players expressed concerns about returning to campus two weeks ago, Jarmond met with the team via Zoom to answer questions along with Kelly.

“I thought it was important to make sure everyone was heard, along with trying to show coaches that things can be addressed head on,” Jarmond said. “I think our safety plan is thorough but we can’t control the spikes going on throughout the country.”

Jarmond is known as one of the country’s best athletic fundraisers, not only at Boston College but when he worked in the athletic programs at Michigan State and Ohio State. That will be needed at UCLA, which ran an $18.9-million deficit during the 2019 fiscal year. That figure could more than double this year.

Jarmond is still doing most of his work from Boston while trying to relocate to Los Angeles. He was on campus last month for the first time after all of his interviews with the search committee were done remotely due to the pandemic.

In order to find out more from students and supporters, he has launched MJ Listens on the athletic program’s website.

“It is critically important to listen and learn from key stakeholders. I have a pretty good idea of where to start but a lot of things will be dictated with what is currently happening,” he said.

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Former UCLA pitcher Tyson Brummett, 3 others die in plane crash

AMERICAN FORK, Utah (AP) — A former UCLA pitcher and three others died in a plane crash in rural Utah.

Ex-pitcher Tyson Brummett, 35, of Salt Lake City, was flying the small plane, which left from the South Valley Regional Airport in West Jordan and crashed near Box Elder Peak in American Fork Canyon just before 8 a.m. Friday, according to the Utah County Sheriff’s Office.

A witness said the plane went into a downward corkscrew motion as it crashed.

TV station WPVI reports all four people on board did not survive.

The passengers were identified as Elaine W. Blackhurst, 60, her husband Douglas Robinson Blackhurst, 62; and their nephew Alex Blackhurst Ruegner, 35. The three were from Riverton, Utah.

“The (Philadelphia) Phillies organization sends heartfelt condolences to the family of and friends of former pitcher Tyson Brummett, along with three members of the Ruegner and Blackhurst families, who tragically passed away in a plane crash yesterday morning,” the team said in a statement released Saturday.

Brummett was drafted by the Phillies in 2007 out of UCLA.

The National Transportation Safety Board said it is investigating the crash.

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Sparks’ new additions Reshanda Gray, Te’a Cooper ready for WNBA bubble

Down a couple of All-Stars, the L.A. Sparks have filled Chiney Ogwumike and Kristi Toliver’s slots at forward and guard with Reshanda Gray and Te’a Cooper — opportunities that feel fateful for both women.

Gray is a 27-year-old native Angeleno who grew up going to Sparks games, screaming for T-shirts and waiting afterward to meet players: “When I put that Sparks jersey on, I think I might cry,” said Gray, who Wednesday sported a T-shirt that read “Change Has No Offseason,” a reference to the team’s new social justice initiative. “Like, it’s like a dream come true that I get to rep the purple and gold and play for my home team.”

Cooper, 23, is a rookie point guard who grew up in Georgia and who just might have sung the Sparks’ invitation into existence. She hasn’t forgotten the song she created for school when she was about 6 years old, rapping the lyrics for reporters on a Zoom call Wednesday: “I was like, ‘It’s Te’a from the arc / I shoot it from the park-ing lot / I’m hot, I should be on the Sparks.

An aggressive rebounder, after two seasons out of the WNBA, Gray thought she’d established herself last season with the New York Liberty, and said she was hurt when she was waived May 26.

Cooper was one of the most exciting prospects in the WNBA Draft, but when the pandemic robbed her and other rookies of a training camp to prove themselves, the Phoenix Mercury waived her on May 26, too.

Both players said they were dutifully staying in shape, but that neither was expecting the call from the Sparks to join the team — considered among the WNBA title favorites heading into a 22-game regular season and prospective playoffs, all of which are set to take place this month at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida.

The 2020 season was supposed to start May 15 before being delayed by the coronavirus pandemic that first shut down play in South Korea, where Gray was was playing well for Asan Woori Bank Wibee, and then abruptly curtailed Cooper’s college career at Baylor.

“Korea was really well prepared,” said Gray, a former Washington Prep high school standout who who credits advice she received from Kobe Bryant when she was 14 with helping her navigate life’s challenges en route to professional basketball career and her position as a mentor for L.A. youth.

“They had tests ready, they had temperatures ready, they had heat sensors ready,” Gray added. “(And then) when things started calming down in Korea and getting back safe, that’s when the United States started to take a toll. And it was scary, because I’m leaving one quarantine and going into another.

“I just leaned on my faith in the end and I just tried to — I feel like if you’re gonna get it, you’re gonna get it. But that doesn’t mean you go out there and be like, ‘Give it to me.’ You take care of yourself, you social distance, you wear a mask, you wash your hands, and you stay out of people’s faces. I just lean on my faith and I just try to be positive about the situation and try to be prepared and worry about safety.”

Ogwumike and Toliver were among the players who’ve opted out of this truncated WNBA season, citing a desire to focus on their health. Other players have said they want to dedicate the time to advocate for racial justice in the United States following the killing of George Floyd on May 25 in Minneapolis.

For her part, Cooper said she isn’t concerned about playing in the confined environment that will be instituted by the WNBA in order to limit players’ potential exposure to COVID-19. There will be regular coronavirus screenings and limited contact with those outside of the league.

“I’m not really an outside type of person, so I’m not really struggling with the idea of the bubble,” Cooper said. “I mean, beside that you can’t bring a plus-one. I would like for my family to be there, but other than that, I mean, we get to play. I get to be in the WNBA. I’m considered a professional. I get to get a jersey. I’m pretty optimistic about it. This is the opportunity I get, so I’m pretty happy and blessed.

“With everything that’s going on in the world, I get to take my mind off that.”

Just as athletes train year-round to be elite on the court, we all need to work together year-round to fight for justice and equality off the court.
To be a part of the change, visit https://t.co/X51vgSEtwf#ChangeHasNoOffseason #GoSparks #LeadTheCharge
@LA_Sparks pic.twitter.com/Xa1QVNvk3M

— Reshanda Gray (@nograyareas21) July 1, 2020

Dream come true 🤯🤭🖤🤗🙏#BlessedAndGrateful pic.twitter.com/THst0o30f6

— Tc2 (@TeaCooper2) June 29, 2020

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MLB teams not able to disclose who goes on injured list due to virus

Trying to find out the status of a baseball player coming back from an ankle injury definitely will be easier than learning whether someone tested positive for the coronavirus.

Major League Baseball said Tuesday that a team will not specifically announce a COVID-19 injured list placement for a player who is removed from the club after testing positive, just an IL trip.

MLB’s operations manual says a positive test, exhibiting symptoms that require isolation for additional assessment or exposure to someone who has had the virus are cause for placement on the new COVID-19 IL.

“It would be a speculating circumstance,” Yankees general manager Brian Cashman told media during a conference call.

Baseball’s collective bargaining agreement states that for any medical condition not related to employment “a club may disclose only the fact that a medical condition is preventing the player from rendering services to the club and the anticipated length of the player’s absence from the club.”

Cashman noted the situation continues to evolve as MLB and the players’ union continue discussions. Testing of players and staff will begin Wednesday as they report to their teams to resume workouts. They will be tested once every two days.

Last week, Charlie Blackmon of the Colorado Rockies became the first MLB player known to have tested positive. According to reports, the All-Star outfielder was one of three Colorado players to have a positive test.

Numerous other teams have said they have players who have tested positive for the virus without identifying any of them. The Philadelphia Phillies announced seven, while the Detroit Tigers said one player who was living in Florida but not working out at the team’s spring training facilities in Lakeland also tested positive.

Seattle Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto said a few players have tested positive but declined to specify how many. Several Toronto Blue Jays players and staff members also have tested positive.

Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen said remaining educated about best practices is going to be crucial for everyone.

“Leadership really is going to be the difference-maker for the teams that are able to best handle this and best cope with the challenges that we face,” he said. “And that really is the accountability that needs to be shared by all of us — not just baseball, but our whole society.”

Baltimore general manager Mike Elias said the Orioles have had no reported cases and that no one on the team has decided against playing in the shortened season.

He’s hoping for a smooth start to the camp that’s scheduled to begin Friday at Camden Yards.

“We recognize that this will be fluid and everyone is having to make personal decisions and circumstances might not be fully understood until the season starts, but so far we are expecting full participation,” Elias said. “You see in the news around the league that’s not the case everywhere and I wouldn’t be shocked if that ends up happening, but that’s going to be part of this.”

“We’re not pressuring anyone or shaming anyone that feels they shouldn’t be here. We’re making that known, and I think it’s well-received,” Elias added. “Our players have been itching to play for a while. I think the whole delay was frustrating for them, for us, and everyone just wants to go play.”

Marlins CEO Derek Jeter is hoping the return of baseball can provide some solace, much like the Yankees did when they returned after 9-11.

“We were thinking as players, ‘Do we even play? What does it mean? We’re playing a game.’ Talking to family members who had lost family members and them thanking us — ‘What are you thanking us for?’ They said, ‘We’re thanking you because you’re giving us something to cheer for. There haven’t been too many happy days around here,’” Jeter said. “Baseball played a big role, at least in New York, in the healing process. It’s not saying you’re ever going to forget what happened. But at least for three hours a day we have the opportunity to give them something to cheer for. We hope that’s the case here when we get going in a couple of weeks.”

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Spring wrap-up Q&A: Aliso Niguel boys lacrosse coach says team had ‘an outstanding opportunity’ as a D2 front-runner


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Editor’s note: The Orange County Register is having the area’s spring sports coaches take part in a Q&A about the 2020 season that was cut short by the coronavirus crisis.


Zach Henderson, Aliso Niguel boys lacrosse

Q: How are you adapting to being home every day during the spring?

A: It was certainly very difficult. In relation to everything, us being asked to stay home isn’t necessarily a “huge” sacrifice. However, in terms of work and seeing the team every single day, it was absolutely an adjustment period and a constant reminder of what was happening and what the team may have missed out on.

Q: As a coach, what do you miss most about your “normal routine” (pre-coronavirus)?

A: I simply miss seeing the young men every single day. In terms of a “routine,” I miss the pregame aspect right before the games took place. It was these moments where the young men were completely autonomous in their pregame warmup, and that was a lot of fun to watch.

Q: When you think about your team these days, what stands out the most?

A: How special this group was. With the adoption from CIF, this particular team had an outstanding opportunity in front of them as one of the front-runners in Division 2. We had tremendous leadership on and off the field, and it would have been incredibly special to see where it may have taken the program.

Q: As a coach, what has been the worst moment for you this spring and why?

A: The worst moment of the spring or season was us driving two hours to Santiago High School in the pouring rain, only to find out that our game (and season, eventually) was cancelled. At the time, there was so much uncertainty with everything going on. I truly believed that we were going to be able to play again during the spring. I feel like I unintentionally lied to my players, and seeing the amount of disappointment top to bottom from the team was excruciating.

Q: And what has been the best moment for you this spring and why?

A: The best moment of the spring is being able to reflect and recognize just how special these young men are and how important the program is as a whole. We can often get caught up in wins and losses with lacrosse, but talking to my seniors especially has opened my eyes to how incredible and strong they have been through this entire process. It makes me very proud to lead them.

Q: If you could play one game tomorrow, what would that look like?

A: One game: Aliso Niguel vs. San Juan Hills. Any place and any time. I think this game had major CIF Division 2 implications, and may have been a battle for the best D2 Orange County team. Not to mention, a league rival. Can’t beat that!

Q: What do you want your players to learn from all of this?

A: I want my players to learn that this is life. While this may have been an unprecedented event in every person’s life globally, it is life. We must always do our best to prioritize things that are most important and not get caught up in surface-level things that don’t matter.

I hope they learn that they are stronger for this than making a deep playoff run. Of course, they want to play and win. But we pride ourselves in developing young men who attack life head on and look straight ahead.

Q: For fun, which player(s) on your team made you laugh the most?

A: I think it is safe to say that Tommy Walsh made the entire team laugh the most. He ALWAYS has something interesting to say, no matter the mood or situation.

Q: For fun, who on your team would you like to challenge to a friendly showdown on the field? And would it be a faceoff or do you go 1-on-1 on offense or defense?

A: My days are long behind me! I am proud to say that nearly every player on my team would have no problem against me 1-on-1. Signs of an improving program!

Q: For fun, what song do you play on the team bus for the final bus ride home?

A: That really isn’t up to me. The players fought to win their game, they get to pick the music. Just keep it clean!

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DeAndre Jordan, Spencer Dinwiddie have coronavirus, may not return with Nets

NEW YORK (AP) — Spencer Dinwiddie and DeAndre Jordan said Monday they have tested positive for the coronavirus, potentially leaving the Brooklyn Nets without two starters when the NBA season resumes.

Jordan said he won’t be in Florida with the Nets when they return from the suspension of the 2019-20 season, while Dinwiddie told The Athletic that he was experiencing symptoms and it was unclear if he would be at Disney’s ESPN Wide World of Sports complex.

At least six players on the Nets have tested positive for the virus. The other four were back in March, when Kevin Durant said he was one of them.

Both players said they tested positive after returning to New York to rejoin the team. Some players left the city, which was a hot spot at the time, after the NBA halted play.

Dinwiddie said he tested negative for the virus multiple times after returning to Brooklyn and took part in a couple practices. But he has since tested positive and said he has a fever and chest soreness.

His absence would be a significant blow to the Nets, given he has played so well this season with Kyrie Irving out of the lineup because of injuries. He is averaging 20.6 points.

Jordan announced his status on Twitter, saying he learned of his diagnosis Sunday night and it was confirmed again Monday.

The center signed with the Nets last summer along with Durant and Irving. The 2016 U.S. Olympic gold medalist spent most of the season as a reserve but had moved into the starting lineup for both games after Jacque Vaughn replaced Kenny Atkinson as coach in March.

The Nets have a half-game lead over Orlando for seventh place in the Eastern Conference. They are set to face the Magic on July 31 in their first game back.

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2019-20 athletes & coaches of the year, All-County teams, Outstanding Seniors

A look back at the OCVarsity award winners for the 2019-20 high school sports season.

Athletes and coaches of the year and All-County teams were selected for the fall and winter sports. For the spring sports, which had their season cut short by COVID-19, the Register chose an Outstanding Senior for each sport.

OCVarsity 2020 Athletes & Coaches of the Year page

FALL SPORTS

FOOTBALL

Offensive Player of the Year: Bryce Young, Mater Dei

Defensive Player of the Year: Clark Phillips III, La Habra

Coach of the Year: Nick Karavedas, Sunny Hills

All-County team: First Team Offense

All-County team: First Team Defense

All-County teams: Second Team and Third Team

GIRLS VOLLEYBALL

Player of the Year: Mia Tuaniga, Mater Dei

Coach of the Year: Isaac Owens, Esperanza

All-County team

BOYS CROSS COUNTY

Runner of the Year: Anthony Grover, JSerra

Coach of the Year: Craig Dunn, Dana Hills

All-County team

GIRLS CROSS COUNTRY

Runner of the Year: Carly Corsinita, Capistrano Valley

Coach of the Year: Ken Chai, El Toro

All-County team

GIRLS GOLF

Golfer of the Year: Sherilyn Villaneuva, Troy

Coach of the Year: Bruce Loman, Sage Hill

All-County team

GIRLS TENNIS

Player of the Year: Kaytlin Taylor, Huntington Beach

Coach of the Year: Natasha Schottland, Portola

All-County team

BOYS WATER POLO

Player of the Year: Tanner Pulice, Corona del Mar

Coach of the Year: Logan Powell, San Clemente

All-County team

 

WINTER SPORTS

BOYS BASKETBALL

Player of the Year: Devin Askew, Mater Dei

Coach of the Year: D’Cean Bryant, Fountain Valley

All-County team

GIRLS BASKETBALL

Player of the Year: Asia Avinger, Rosary

Coach of the Year: Jimmy Valverde, Esperanza

All-County team

BOYS SOCCER

Player of the Year: Uriel Sanchez, Servite

Coach of the Year: Jon Spencer, Servite

All-County team

GIRLS SOCCER

Player of the Year: Samantha Williams, JSerra

Coach of the Year: Pat Rossi, Los Alamitos

All-County team

GIRLS WATER POLO

Player of the Year: Emma Lineback, Laguna Beach

Coach of the Year: Rory Bevins, Rosary

All-County team

BOYS WRESTLING

Wrestler of the Year: Aaron Nagao, Esperanza

Coach of the Year: Dane Valdez, Calvary Chapel

All-County team

GIRLS WRESTLING

Wrestler of the Year: Aine Drury, Westminster

All-County team

 

SPRING SPORTS

Outstanding Seniors

Baseball: Jonny Long, Orange

Softball: Madi Simon, Beckman

Boys Swimming: Ryan Abdollahi, Dana Hills

Girls Swimming: Ella Ristic,  Santa Margarita

Boys Track & Field: Isaac Korn, Trabuco Hills

Girls Track & Field: Sophia Hartwell, Orange Lutheran

Boys Volleyball: Niko Colburn, Huntington Beach

Boys Tennis: Jake Huarte, Mater Dei

Boys Golf: Taehoon Song, Anaheim Discovery Christian

Boys Lacrosse: Andrew Cumming, Foothill

Girls Lacrosse: Ashley Stokes, Foothill

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OCVarsity 2020 Athletes of the Year special section

The Register wraps up a year of excellence in high school sports by selecting the Orange County Athletes of the Year.

The honorees are featured in a special section that includes lists of all of the athletes and coaches who received OCVarsity honors in 2019-20. The section is included in Sunday’s edition of the Register.

There is also an interactive online version of the section that can be found here.

A link to our page for the 2020 OCVaristy Athlete & Coach Awards.

This year, because of COVID-19, the Register couldn’t host its annual banquet for all of the year’s award winners, but the OCVarsity staff congratulates the honorees, including Rosary’s Asia Avinger, who received the Trinity League Athlete of the Year award from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange.

 

To read the individual stories, click on the athlete names below.

Male Athlete of the Year

Bryce Young, Mater Dei


Mater Dei High quarterback Bryce Young announced his commitment to attend Alabama on social media on Sunday, Sept. 22, 2019. (Photo by Jeff Gritchen, Orange County Register/SCNG)

 

Female Athlete of the Year

Asia Avinger, Rosary


Rosary’s Asia Avinger is one of the Orange County Register’s 2020 Athletes of the Year. The San Clemente High School athlete committed to play basketball at San Diego State. Photographed in Anaheim, CA on Thursday, May 14, 2020. (Photo by Paul Bersebach, Orange County Register/SCNG)

 

Male Outstanding Competitor

Lance Keneley, Mission Viejo


Mission Viejo High School’s Lance Keneley is one of the Orange County Register’s 2020 Athletes of the Year. Keneley has committed to play football at Stanford. Photographed in Anaheim, CA on Thursday, May 14, 2020. (Photo by Paul Bersebach, Orange County Register/SCNG)

Female Outstanding Competitor

Ella Gardiner, San Clemente


San Clemente athlete Ella Gardiner is one of the Orange County Register’s 2020 Athletes of the Year. Gardiner excelled in basketball and volleyball.  Photographed in Anaheim, CA on Thursday, May 14, 2020. (Photo by Paul Bersebach, Orange County Register/SCNG)

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