Trio of local athletes get all-conference recognition

The following are updates on local athletes competing at the collegiate level.

Patrick Donahue (Glendale Community College, 2010) Southern Oregon football senior: The high-flying season for Donahue and a handful of other locals came to a close Saturday in a nailbiting 47-44 overtime loss to third-seeded Morningside in the quarterfinals of the NAIA Football Championship Series.

With the loss, Southern Oregon finished its season at 9-3, tying it for the most wins in program history. In defeat, Donahue concluded his phenomenal season with 11 catches for 96 yards and a touchdown, bringing his seasonal total to 103 catches, as he became the first Raider to eclipse 100 receptions in a season.

Also in the game, another former GCC standout, linebacker Kalii Robinson, led the team in tackles with 13 and added a big second-half interception. Finally, Crescenta Valley High product Clay Sierra, a tight end, hauled in two catches for 14 yards.

All three of the aforementioned locals had previously been bestowed All-Frontier Conference honors, after playing vital rolls in the Raiders earning a share of the conference crown.

In his record-setting season, Donahue, a senior, had 1,484 yards and nine touchdowns, with seven games of more than 100 yards receiving and two with more than 200 yards during a stretch of six straight weeks of triple-digit receiving yards. He also had just over 700 yards in 33 kick returns as he was a first-team all-conference selection.

Sierra, a redshirt freshman, earned a first-team all-conference nod as he tallied 24 catches for 329 yards and five touchdowns.

Robinson led Southern Oregon with 115 total tackles and added 8.5 for a loss, three pass break-ups and two forced fumbles in earning second-team all-conference in the process.

Sabrina Hatzer (Crescenta Valley High, 2012) L.A. Valley College water polo freshman: A banner season brimming with eye-spinning statistics has drawn accolades for last season’s All-Area Girls’ Water Polo Player of the Year and the 2012 Glendale News-Press Girls’ Athlete of the Year.

Hatzer had a whopping 136 goals, as well as 78 steals and 44 assists — which were all team-highs. Her goals and steals were also conference highs and she was rewarded with a second-team All-Southern California Regional selection and a first-team All-Western State Conference honor.

Teammate and former Crescenta Valley standout Nayiri Kechichian also received equal honors in SoCal and the conference. Kechichian produced 83 goals, 30 steals and 26 assists.

Under former CV Coach Pete Loporchio, L.A. Valley also saw goalkeeper Mariquita Lopez Engelman, out of Glendale High, earn first-team all-conference honors after notching 242 saves. Second-team honors went to Jennifer Wagner, out of CV, and Jacqueline Jones of Glendale. Jones had 30 goals, 29 assists and 21 steals, while Wagner tallied 10 goals, 20 assists and 23 steals.

Another former Falcon under Loporchio, Shelby Gregg, was a first-team All-South Coast Conference pick and a second-team All-SoCal selection after her sophomore year at Pasadena City College. Gregg finished with a single-season school-record 279 saves for the Lancers, who got 38 goals from Glendale High product Milene Minassians, who was a second-team All-SCC pick.

Dani Busta (Crescenta Valley High, 2012) Pasadena City College soccer freshman: Busta, a multiple-time All-Area and All-Pacific League honoree, is now an All-South Coast Conference second-team selection.

Busta was crucial to a defense that buoyed a Lancers squad that finished second in the South Coast Conference with a 12-5-5 record en route to the Southern California Regional Playoffs. It was the first time in five years that PCC advanced to the postseason and the most wins for the program since 2005.

Busta had a goal and three assists while starting on a defense that posted seven shutouts and allowed on average just 1.07 goals against.

Freshman midfielder Cassandra Orozco out of Crescenta Valley was also a key member of the team, as she was one of just two Lancers to start all 22 games. She had three goals and four assists, including scoring the Lancers’ final goal of the season in a 2-1 overtime loss to Santa Monica in a play-in match of the SoCal regionals.

Brian Trejo (Hoover High, 2009) San Francisco State cross-country senior: Trejo and the Gators came to the finish line of their greatest season ever on Nov. 17 in Missouri.

In the program’s first trip to the NCAA Division II National Championships, the Gators took 22nd overall, led by Bruk Assefa’s 45th place finish in 30 minutes 36.6 seconds in the 10K race.

Trejo was the second Gator to finish, leaving his best for last as he ran a personal-best in the 10K of 31:37.1 to take 110th. The time was the third-best overall all-time for San Francisco State.

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