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Step in line for award winners

With the new school year less than two months away and the summer-league season coming to a close, it’s a good time to look back on the past school year.

With the 2010-11 campaign came remarkable achievements, successful teams and outstanding athletes who made the year memorable.

As is the yearly tradition, these deserving individuals and accomplishments from the four local high schools — Burbank, Burroughs Providence and Bellarmine-Jefferson — should be recognized.

In fact, many deserve awards for their feats. So here it is, a list of the best of the best, winners of what I affectionately call the Tully Trophy. To be a recipient, an individual, team or school has to exhibit meritorious or worthy accomplishment. Either that, or they have to have done something stupid or strange.


So, without further ado, here are the lucky winners:

•The What-were-you-thinking trophy goes to the Burroughs High assistant baseball coach to allegedly served players alcohol during a spring tournament trip. The school cancelled the Indians’ season, fired coaches and players were suspended because of the incident. What a lapse in judgment.

•The Over-the top trophy is given to the Burroughs administration and local school board for their reaction to the drinking incident. Cancelling the season was definitely an overreaction and suspending players who didn’t take part in the drinking — but who know about it and didn’t come fourth — was not the appropriate thing to do.

•The Repeat-performance trophy is awarded to Burroughs placekicker Christobal Escobar. Escobar kicked what appeared to be the winning field goal against rival Burbank in the 2010 Big Game. However, the Bulldogs had called for a timeout just prior to his kick. With just 4.7 seconds remaining and the score tied, he made good on a 21-yard attempt — and his time it counted — to lift Burroughs to a 38-35 win.


•The Major-collapse trophy is given to the Burbank football team. The Bulldogs jumped out to a 28-0 lead in the second quarter against Burroughs in the Big Game, only to see the Indians battle back for the 38-35 victory.

•The Appropriate-name trophy is given to Burroughs cross-country and track runner Kristen Burroughs.

•The I-bet-your-name-is always-misspelled trophy is awarded to Burbank swimmer Bell Mingcharaenwong (I hope that’s the right spelling).

•The Oh-brother trophy goes to Burroughs siblings Tyler and Lucas Yanez. The talented duo helped lead the Burroughs football and boys’ volleyball teams to Pacific League championships during the 2010-11 campaign.

•The Triple-threat trophy is given to Burbank multi-sport athlete Jordan Card. Card not only won the Pacific League Player of the Year award in girls’ water polo, but she also captured a league discus title in track and field and was a member of the Bulldogs’ girls’ golf team.

•The Good-guy trophy goes to Providence Coach and Athletic Director and girls’ basketball Coach Andrew Bencze. Win or lose, Bencze is always accommodating, upbeat and a pleasure to work with. Bencze is a man who obviously loves his work, loves Providence and generally cares about the athletes he assists.

•The Comeback-of-the-year trophy is awarded to Bell-Jeff baseball player Philip Diaz-McTague. He bounced back from a devastating ankle injury as a junior to have a successful senior year this past season, winning Santa Fe League Player of the Year honors and All-CIF Southern Section first-team accolades.

•The Out-of-nowhere trophy goes to Burbank softball player Katie Hooper. A success in soccer for the Bulldogs, Hooper had a breakout softball campaign, hitting .539 to earn first-team All-CIF Southern Section accolades.


•The It’s-about-time trophy is given to the new Memorial Field project. After years of delay, the reconstruction of the stadium finally got underway and the project is moving at a feverish pace.

•The Dedication-to-team trophy goes to the senior members of the Burroughs boys’ volleyball team. On the evening the seniors were scheduled to take part in graduation ceremonies, the Indians were instead in San Diego County taking part in the state playoffs. Now that’s team dedication.

•The Breaking-a-drought trophy is awarded to the Bell-Jeff boys’ basketball team. The Guards broke a longstanding title drought by capturing their first Santa Fe League championship in 13 years.

•The Sharp-shooter trophy goes to Providence boys’ basketball player Patrick Gonzalez. The junior averaged 37.8 points a game and had the highest scoring average in California.

All the winners can step forward and claim their awards. And please, keep your speeches brief.