2015, Week 1: It’s Helix and Mission Hills

Helix received 19 first-place votes and Mission Hills 3 in the first, 2015  Union-Tribune football poll.

The Highlanders open their season at 2 p.m. Saturday at Cathedral against Arizona’s Scottsdale Chaparral in one of the annual “Comrade in Arms” games, while Mission Hills takes on visiting Los Angeles Crenshaw Friday at 7.

Game of the week is Friday night at 7:30, when Rancho Santa Margarita, ranked 13th in the Los Angeles Times, visits Cathedral.

Other interesting intersectionals include Carlsbad versus Phoenix Brophy Prep Saturday at 7:30  at Cathedral; Christian at Brawley Friday at 7:00, and Phoenix Desert Vista  at La Costa Canyon Friday at 7.

Most appealing matchup of preseason Top 10 teams has El Capitan and Madison meeting at Cathedral Friday at 5.

Week 1:

# Team (1st place votes) Points ’14 W-L Previous
1.  Helix (19) 217 10-3 3
2. Mission Hills (3) 198 9-3 4
3. Cathedral 150 10-2 5
4. St. Augustine 134 8-5 6
5. Oceanside 101 14-1 1
6. Madison 84 9-4 9
7. Eastlake 77 7-4 10
8. El Capitan 51 14-1 2
9. Torrey Pines 43 6-5 15
10. Carlsbad 39 5-6 NR

Others receiving votes (points, 2014 record & ranking in parenthesis):                               San Marcos (27, 10-2, 12th), Rancho Bernardo (22, 10-3, 7th), Christian, 18, 13-1, 8th), Ramona, 13, 8-3, 13th), Steele Canyon (10, 7-4, NR), Bonita Vista (5, 5-6, NR), Valhalla (5, 4-7, NR), El Camino (4, 7-6, 16th), La Costa Canyon (4, 7-6, NR), The Bishop’s (3, 13-0, 11th), Granite Hills (1, 9-4, NR).

Twenty-two media and CIF representatives vote each week: John Maffei (U-T San Diego), Steve Brand, Terry Monahan, Don Norcross, Jim Lindgren, Tom Saxe, Rick Hoff (U-T San Diego correspondents), Bill Dickens, Chris Davis (East County Sports.com), Steve (Biff) Dolan, Rick (Red) Hill (Mountain Country 107.9 FM), John (Coach) Kentera, Ted Mendenhall, Bob Petinak (The Mighty 1090), Rick Willis, Brandon Stone (KUSI-TV), Rick Smith (partletonsports.com), Jerry Schniepp, John Labeta (CIF San Diego Section), Bodie DeSilva (sandiegopreps.com), Drew Smith (sdcoastalsports.com), Lisa Lane (San Diego Preps Insider).

FINAL 2014 POLL

# Team (1st place votes) W-L Points Previous
1 Oceanside (19) 13-0 190 1
2 El Capitan 13-0 160 3
3 Helix 10-3 150 5
4 Mission Hills 9-3 118 4
5 Cathedral 10-2 107 2
6 St. Augustine 8-5 84 NR
7 Rancho Bernardo 10-3 64 7
8 Christian 13-0 64 8
9 Madison 9-4 43 NR
10 Eastlake 7-4 27 6

LIKE FATHERS, LIKE SONS

David Justice, Jr., is a sophomore quarterback at St. Augustine and the son of the former major league outfielder of the same name who hit 305 home runs in a 14-season career.

Cathedral quarterback Tate Haynes is the son of Pro Football Hall of Famer Mike Haynes, who intercepted 46 passes in his 14-season NFL career.

Scripps Ranch quarterback Zach Podraza is the son of Tim Podraza, veteran NFL game official

CARDINALS PUBBED

Hoover was featured in Fuel, a magazine dedicated to high school football. Coach Jerry Ralph and two of his players were selected for  the magazine cover.

Ralph was interviewed for an article that described a cooperative effort with school faculty. The idea was to improve Cardinals players academics and ensure their eligibility.

The Cardinals are 25-11 in Ralph’s three seasons and he is one of 41 coaches in the San Diego Section who have won at least 100 games.  Ralph is 121-68-2 for a .636 winning percentage in 16 seasons at four schools.

Hoover’s opening game Friday is against Ron Hamamoto’s Monte Vista’s Monarchs. Hamamoto is the leading active San Diego Section coach with 201 victories.

Ralph's Hoover program goes national.

Ralph’s Hoover program goes national.


QUICK KICKS
—Bobby Hatchett replaced Brandon Hawkins as coach at San Ysidro as preseason training was beginning…Hawkins stepped in as head coach for Terry Tucker in Week 3 of 2014…former NFL linebacker Na’il Diggs is an assistant coach at Point Loma… Diggs, a ninth-round draft choice out of Ohio State by the Green Bay Packers in 2000, finished a 12-season, 170-game career with the San Diego Chargers in 2011…the field at La Jolla is under repair and the Vikings will play their home games at the new Mission Bay layout, some 60 seasons after Mission Bay began playing  its home games at La Jolla…Kearny returns home to a new stadium…Crawford will be on the road as the football field and the baseball diamond exchange places…

 

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2015: Lots of Coaching Changes

Seeking  head job?  Apply here.

At least 18 football vacancies have been filled in the San Diego Section as 96 schools await the first week of action Aug. 28-29.

The 18th newcomer will be Darryel Neal of Salton City West Shores, which is back in the Citrus League, in which it was a member from 1998-2007 before moving to the Southern Section.

Calvary Christian Vista either is closing or not fielding a team.

New coaches and those they succeeded:

Name School Replaces ’14 Record
Nehemiah Bronson Army-Navy Fran Fanene 1-9
Sean Johnson Calexico Joe Bielma 2-9
David Wong Calexico Vincent Memorial Daniel Galvez 10-2
Brennan Petree Calipatria David Shaw 1-9
Daryl Butterfield Chula Vista Drew Westling 2-8
Parris Piscona El Cajon Valley Norm Whitehead 3-9
John Mitosinka El Centro Southwest Joe Connor 4-7
D.J. Walcott Francis Parker John Morrison 6-6
Will Gray Kearny Kenny Nears 0-10
Bernard Vann Mountain Empire Bill Dobson 5-5
Dave Rodriguez Oceanside John Carroll 14-1
Darryel Neal Salton City West Shores David Guillen 0-8
Charles James San Diego Knengi Martin 1-9
Paco Silva San Diego Southwest Frank Paredes 0-10
Bobby Hatchett San Ysidro Brandon Hawkins 3-7
Sergio Diaz Serra Brian Basteyns 2-8
Rali Schwartz The Rock Scotty James 3-6
Edward Wean Warner Charlie Cheek 4-5

 

 

 

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1966: Shallow Playoff Pool, As Usual

San Diego Section bosses, unlike their successors 40 years later, were determined to keep the playoffs short and sweet and the season’s length to their liking.

The administrators came up with a format that was surprisingly agreed to by St. Augustine and the  11 city schools and created an odd regular-season conclusion this year.

The final week’s schedule, described by some in the media as the “lame duck card,” offered no title-deciding or playoff-qualifying contests.  All Eastern and Western league action was nonleague.

The two city circuits had completed league play a week early.

Games and opponents for the final slate of games were shuffled to allow for a “private playoff” between Morse, champion of the Eastern League, and Western League winner Point Loma.

This was possible when San Diego and Mission Bay, Morse’s and Point Loma’s regularly-scheduled opponents, were switched and San Diego played Mission Bay.

The Cavers-Buccaneers contest freed the Tigers and Pointers for their postseason “play-in” game.

The playoff format was complete after Point Loma defeated Morse, 21-14, to gain the round of four the following week, assuring a postseason run of no more than two weeks.

Harlon Bartlett of the Evening Tribune came out swinging in September, writing that the 12 Eastern and Western League members “fell victim of the hoodwink before the first missed block.

“It all happened last winter when city administrators allowed (or were forced by) the SD-CIF council to allocate one playoff berth to the finest football flesh in the CIF,” said Bartlett.

Bartlett meant that the talent in the Eastern and Western leagues was superior to that of the other major alliances in the County and that the two city entities had agreed to a ridiculous proposal.

“That (Eastern or Western) team then will join with the Metro (Chula Vista),  Grossmont (Helix), and Avocado (Oceanside) champions to form the usual, four-team field,” Bartlett continued.

Commissioner Don Clarkson (center) has to "step in" and "separate" Point Loma's Bennie Edens (left) and Helix' Warren Vinton before teams met in San Diego Section championship. Not really. Just another photo op.

Commissioner Don Clarkson (center) has to “step in” and “separate” Point Loma’s Bennie Edens (left) and Helix’ Warren Vinton before teams met in San Diego Section championship. Principals, and photographer, weren’t serious.

The Avocado League, designated as small school since it was formed in 1953, became the fifth major loop this season.  This could have thrown a wrench into the council’s desire to begin the postseason with only four teams.

“I don’t know what will happen after this year,” said CIF commissioner Don Clarkson.  “I know the senior high principals requested a change be made for next year.  The only answer to this thing probably is releaguing or expanding the playoffs.”

AN EIGHT-TEAM BRACKET?

By adding league runners-up (Bennie Edens’s suggestion in 1965), the following second place teams would be in the postseason this year:  University (8-1), Grossmont (7-1), Kearny (6-3) and either Hoover (6-2-1) or St. Augustine (4-4).

Not exactly a flood of mediocrity and adding only one week to the season.

Other teams that finished lower than second place, such as Lincoln (7-2). Carlsbad (7-2), Granite Hills (6-2),  and La Jolla (6-3) would have been on the outside, looking in.

LAST ADD CAVERS-BUCCANEERS

The game had school pride ramifications.

By winning, Mission Bay would finish with a  4-4 record, its first nonlosing campaign since 1958.

By winning, San Diego High would avoid its worst season since the Hilltoppers first teed it up in 1891.

Staring at a possible 0-9 finish, the Cavers faced the ignominy of being less than the 0-6-2 club of 1961, the 0-5-1 of ’08, and the 0-3-1 of ’00.

Quarterback Leonard Simon, whose brother Steve was the signal caller in San Diego’s last championship run  in 1959, passed 47 yards to Howard Johnson for one score and three yards to Howard Chase for another in the fourth quarter as the Cavemen rallied to a 19-14 victory.

Perhaps just as memorable, a dustup started on the last play of the game and erupted into what observers described as a “wild melee”.

Order was restored and San Diego stayed out of the history book.

WHEN HE SPEAKS, THEY LISTEN

Investors may be doing that today, in the 21st century, listening to Ray Lucia, heard on San Diego air waves, offering financial advice.

Ray also was a good investment for the Poway Titans. The 5-foot, 8-inch, 140-pounder, set a school record with six touchdown passes in a 38-12 victory over Coronado.

THEY SAID IT

Helix’ Warren Vinton, on  his playoff opponent’s offensive specialty unit:  “We’re a little worried about Point Loma’s ‘Dirty Dogs’, but (defensive coach) Bill White has come up with a ‘rabies defense’….”

Bennie Edens on returning 21 lettermen from the 1965 team that went to the San Diego Section finals:  “We had a good year, so we lettered everybody.”

Hoover’s Roy Engle on his reluctance to talk about injuries:  “After all, there are 500 mothers of Hoover High kids who won’t let their sons play football.”

Edens, on some assertive ball carrying by John Cervinsky in a 25-6 playoff win over Oceanside:  “He ran like a Tiger, and I don’t mean a Morse Tiger.”

Point Loma quarterback Bill Gable, after the Pointers rushed for 337 yards against Oceanside:  “I didn’t think they were very good.”

San Diego’s Joe Duke:  “If I had all of the players at San Diego, Lincoln, and Morse, I’d have a pretty good club.”

HORNETS’ GAIN

San Diego’s most painful loss was quarterback Jerry Powell, the last in a long line of great athletes from the same family.

Powell transferred to Lincoln as a junior and led the Hornets to a 7-2 record after guiding the Cavemen’s junior varsity to an undefeated season in 1965.

MORSTAD STIRS MEMORIES

Morstad evoked Hoover memories.

Morstad had Hockervillers thinking of historic Hoover runners.

Hoover’s John Morstad, the County’s third leading scorer with 16 touchdowns and 4 PAT for 100 points, was being compared to previous Cardinals standouts.

“John Adams was a lot bigger (215 pounds) and could run over people,” said Morstad’s coach, Roy Engle, “but I don’t think Adams had the mobility Morstad has or John’s ability to score from anywhere on the field.”

Morstad, 6 feet, 175, also had a 50-yard average on 6 kickoff returns.

Hoover's Roy Engle, joined at Union-Tribune football luncheon by San Diego Chargers' Bob Petrich and Gary Garrison (from left), coached team to 6-2-1 record but watched playoffs from sidelines.

Hoover’s Roy Engle, joined at Union-Tribune football luncheon by San Diego Chargers’ Bob Petrich and Gary Garrison (from left), gave props to halfback John Morstad.

Adams scored 108 points in 1954 and generally was considered the school’s all-time best, along with George Stephenson (1951).  Bob Miller set the school record with 126 points in 1947.

Engle tied for the County lead with 57 points when he led Hoover to a 7-1-1 record in 1935.

THE CATHOLIC BOWL

St. Augustine, playing football since 1924, and University, playing football since 1957, met in the first game between the San Diego Section’s largest Catholic institutions.

Uni had been trying to get on the Saints’ schedule since Robert (Bull) Trometter became the Dons’ head coach in 1960.

As writer Jim Lindgren pointed out, “It turned out to be a case of dreadfully poor timing for the Nutmeg Street gang.”

Dunning arm also led to a major league pitching career.

Steve Dunning’s arm also led to a major league pitching career.

Uni Quarterback Steve Dunning passed for two touchdowns in the first six minutes and the Dons’ defense allowed only two first downs as the school located across Linda Vista Road from the University of San Diego scored a shocking, 30-7 victory.

As far as timing  was concerned, it was a down year (4-4) for St. Augustine and an up year (8-1) for Uni.

Dunning was the number two selection in the 1970 amateur baseball draft, picked  by the Cleveland Indians out of Stanford University.  Dunning became the  second player in draft history to bypass the minor leagues and go directly to the majors.

Dunning pitched seven seasons for five teams and held the distinction of hitting a grand slam home run off the Oakland A’s Diego Segui in 1971. The feat was not duplicated by another pitcher until the Seattle Mariners’ Felix Hernandez turned the trick in 2008.

A star running back on Dunning’s University team was Mike Carey, destined to  become one of the NFL’s most respected game referees.

ROWDYISM

City schools’ superintendent Ralph Dailard imposed an embargo on night football.  All games of Oct. 8 were played in the afternoon at the suggestion of police chief Wesley Sharp.

Sharp described a postgame beef at Morse after the Tigers’ game with Point Loma on Sept. 30 as “a near riot” and complained that he didn’t have enough patrolmen available to handle possible problems involving night football games every Friday.

Sharp was criticized publicly by one parent who said, “If police do not have the manpower to handle disturbances, then there should be a priority in developing the police budget.”

Parent Louise Dyer added that  it was”extremely unfortunate” that police at the outset did not make it clear that students were not involved in the disturbance.”

An investigation showed that  three students were involved and were expelled from school.

The school board, with Dailard pushing, lifted the ban after one week.

Sharp, who came in for criticism throughout the process, said he was “sorry the board of education did not agree with my recommendation.  We will continue to police the games to the best of our ability.”

CIF commissioner Don Clarkson estimated that city schools lost about $7,000 in revenue by going from night to day.

HYPERBOLE

Coaches engage in  glowing adjectives.

Pick a season.  Pick a coach.   “Best I’ve ever seen,” is popular.   So is “best we’ve  ever had.”

Bennie Edens was more specific when he declared lineman Bill Alexander “the best pulling tackle I’ve ever had.”

Joe Duke was more general, boasting that the Cavemen had “more backfield speed than I’ve ever had.”

Helix’ Warren Vinton called Mark Brown “the best all-around running back we’ve ever had.”

BASEBALL’S HIS GAME

Harry Elliott  played centerfield for the pennant-winning, Pacific Coast League San Diego Padres in 1954.  Elliott had 224 base hits and his .350 average led the league.

Elliott joined the St. Louis Cardinals  and made the team in 1955 as an extra outfielder and pinch hitter.  He returned to the Padres for the 1956 season and retired after playing for Chattanooga in the Southern Association in 1958.

Elliott used his college degree and began a long teaching career at El Cajon Valley High. He was named the Braves’ baseball coach in 1960, but answered the call from principal John Cornelius when football coach Ed Foster left after the 1965 season.

Elliott (second from left) played two seasons with St. Louis Cardinals. He's shownm here in Cardinals' 10955 training camp photo with (from left) Bill Virdon, Rip Repulski, Wally Moon, and Stan Musial.

The St. Louis Cardinals’ outfield in 1956 spring training included (from left), Bill Virdon, Harry Elliott, Rip Repulski, Wally Moon, and Stan Musial.

Elliott, who played football at the University of Minnesota in the 1940s for the legendary Bernie Bierman, wore two hats for three seasons, one for baseball and and other for football,

Elliott’s first football team this season was 0-9 after returning one letterman and losing the other two from the 6-2-1 team of  ’65.

Elliott was able to devote all his time to baseball after posting a 3-21 record in three seasons in football.

LIKE FATHER, LIKE SON

Escondido’s Bob Embrey rushed for 79 yards in 13 carries and scored a touchdown in the Cougars’ 26-7 win over Coronado.  Beaming on the sideline was his father, head coach Bob (Chick) Embrey.

Morse end Ernie Mallory’s dad played an important role in San Diego’s prep basketball history.  Ernie Mallory, Sr., was the top player on the 1935-36 San Diego High team that won the Southern California major division championship, the only such title ever won by a local school.

QUICK KICKS

Oceanside’s 9-0 regular season represented the Pirates’ most successful since the 6-0 team in the war-shortened 1943 campaign…Helix,  9-1, enjoyed its best year since the 8-1’s of 1956 and ’61… Grossmont’s 7-1 was the best since a 9-1-1 record in 1947…San Marcos’ 340 points were divided by 17 players…the Knights defeated Marian, 47-13, for the  Class A championship…San Marcos had a scare during the season when it pulled out a 7-0 victory over the same team…The San Diego Union  student correspondent Anthony Cunningham kicked an extra point as the San Miguel School tied La Jolla Country Day, 13-13,  and won the Southern League championship…Hoover and Kearny opened against each other for the fourth successive season, the Cardinals winning, 26-24…Mission Bay had dropped 15 consecutive Western League games since 1963 and 14 in a row overall before Gary Myron passed five yards to Matt Maslowski on the last play of the game for a 20-19 win over La Jolla…Mar Vista tied Chula Vista, 7-7, on a spectacular, 82-yard, tackle-eligible play…Mario Alcantar passed 15 yards to to 200-pound Bill Homer, who lumbered 67 yards for the Mariners’ touchdown…Point Loma had its “Dirty Dogs” on offense, but defense was the Pointers’ game…Roger Wagar stopped Crawford possessions with 4 interceptions and Glenn Killingbeck ran 73 yards with a fifth  in the 14-6 victory over the Colts…Granite Hills’ 40-7 win over El Cajon Valley was its first over big brother…the Eagles’ campus, which opened in 1960, is located at 1719 E. Madison Avenue in El Cajon…the Braves’ home, opened in 1955, is at 1035  E. Madison, a separation of 1.8 miles….

Point Loma quarterback Bill Gable gained 21 yards on this play as Pointers ran away for 25-6 victory over Oceanside and defenders Sandy Heath (left) and Bill McMoore.

Point Loma quarterback Bill Gable gained 21 yards on this play as Pointers ran away for 25-6 victory over Oceanside and defenders Sandy Heath (left) and Bill McMoore.

 

 

 

 

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2015: Yetta, Ray Brokaw, Early Western League Standouts

Winning Pointers, back row from left:  Larry Moore, Mike Dolphin, Dick Walden, Doug Lawrence.  Front: Winston Yetta, Don Sadas, reading newspaper account, and coach Hilbert Crosthwaite.

Yetta (front row, left) enjoyed reading news account of Point Loma championship with Don Sada and coach Hilbert Crosthwaite.  Looking on in back are Larry Moore, Mike Dolphin, Dick Walden, and Doug Lawrence.

Winston Yetta, who led Point Loma to a Southern California basketball championship in 1959-60, and Ray Brokaw, a member of Birt Slater’s first two teams at Kearny, have passed away.

Yetta, a three-sport performer—football, basketball, and baseball—was the catalyst in the Pointers’ surprising, five-game title run in the CIF Southern Section AA division.

Point guard in coach Hilbert Crosthwaite’s weaving, pass-first offense, Yetta scored 22 points as the Pointers defeated San Marino, 52-36, in the finals at Los Angeles State to finish the season with a 17-10 record.

Brokaw and his twin brother, Jay, were two-way linemen on Slater’s 5-4, 1959 squad that won the first championship of the Western League, upsetting Point Loma, 12-7, and earning a berth in the Southern Section playoffs.

Ray is 32 in front row, next to Jay (34) lon the Kearny's 1959 Western League championship team.

Ray is 32 in front row, next to Jay (29) on the Kearny’s 1959 Western League championship team.

The twins also were important contributors to the 1960 team that posted a 5-3 record.

The Brokaws were part of an eclectic group.

The 1960 team included all-league end Bob Mosley, who was a founding member of the band Moby Grape, and television newsman Harold (Red) Greene, reportedly the inspiration for the character played by Will Farrell in the movie Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy.

 

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2015: Hamamoto Lone Active 200-game Winner

Ten active coaches are among the 41 who have won at least 100 games in the San Diego Section as teams  begin practice this week in advance of opening games Aug. 28.

Ron Hamamoto, 201-127-4 in 30 years at University, Rancho Bernardo, Lincoln, and Monte Vista, ranks eighth on the all-time list, 12 victories ahead of Rob Gilster, 189-117-5 at Orange Glen and Valley Center, 47 behind leader John Carroll, who retired at Oceanside after the 2014 season.

A 12-win season would tie Hamamoto with Jim Arnaiz, No. 7 all time with a 213-77-11 record in 27 campaigns at Helix.

At least two more could reach 100 wins this year. Damian Gonzalez is 92-77-3 in 14 seasons at Army-Navy and Poway, and Paul Gomes is 91-75-7 in 12 seasons at Escondido and Rancho Buena Vista.

Others moving up but still seasons away are Vista’s Dan Williams, 73-54-2 in 11 seasons, and Helix’ Troy Starr, 72-16-1 in six, and El Capitan’s Ron Burner, 70-44-2 in 10.

Damon Baldwin is 69-43-1 in 10 seasons at Ramona, Brian Hay 69-84 in 15 at El Centro Southwest, Hilltop, Mar Vista, and Sweetwater, and Tom Karlo 68-43-2 in 11 at Mount Miguel and Grossmont.

Go here for the complete “Coach 100 Club“, or click the Football menu item and then Coach 100 Club.

Please email Rick@partletonsports.com with corrections or additions.

The active leaders:

Name School Record Pct. Rank/Years
Ron Hamamoto (1) Monte Vista 201-127-4 .611 8/30
Ron Gilster (2) Valley Center 189-117-5 .616 11/26
Willie Matson (3) Mission Bay 170-123-6 .573 12/26
Sean Doyle Cathedral 155-79 .662 14/19
Gary Blevins Mira Mesa 132-97-4 .575 20/21
Matt Oliver Christian 128-56-3 .693 26/16
Chris Hauser (4) Mission Hills 124-57-2 .680 28/15
Jerry Ralph (5) Hoover 121-68-2 .636 30/16
Mike  Hastings Point Loma 120-77-4 .607 33/17
Rick Jackson Madison 100-31-1 .761 40/11

1) Hamamoto also was at University, Rancho Bernardo, and Lincoln.                                                                                                                   2) Gilster also was  at Orange Glen.                                                                                                                                                                           3) Matson also was at Kearny, Hoover, and University City.                                                                                                                                     4) Hauser also was at Vista.                                                                                                                                                                                         5) Ralph also was at Santana, St. Augustine, and Del Norte.  

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2015: Eddie Logans, 70, One of “The Twins”

Eddie Logans, 70, from a family of athletes and achievers, died after a long illness on July 17.

Eddie and his twin brother, Elmer, preceded by footballer-wrestler-hurdler Tommy, were standouts at San Diego High..

Eddie ran the 440 in :49.6, the third fastest time in San Diego County, and Elmer was the County’s leading low hurdler and a qualifier for the state meet in 1962.

The twins led a spirited and undermanned San Diego team in a bid to upset Lincoln in a roaring 1962 dual track meet at Lincoln.

Eddie and Elmer each won their events against the favored Hornets, who finally pulled out a 57-47 victory.

Eddie got a measure of revenge later in the season at the Easter Relays at Sweetwater.

Logans anchored a 3:22.6 victory in the mile relay as the Cavemen soundly defeated the Hornets, anchored by the legendary Vernus Ragsdale.

Services will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, July 30, at Blessed Trinity Christian Ministries on Highland Avenue, 2609 Highland Avenue in National City.

Conducting  will be the Rev. Dr. Clyde Oden of Los Angeles.  Oden, the twins’ teammate in 1962 , was a standout half-miler who ran a career best in that meet at Lincoln.

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1928: Eligibility Showdown for Saints and Hilltoppers

The rivalry between San Diego High and St. Augustine, only a year old in football, had heated up.

At least six graduates of the high school continued to play on the prep level, for St. Augustine.

This was not uncommon throughout the CIF in the 1920s, but it was a good explanation for the 30-year struggle the Saints endured while trying to gain respect and a league membership with San Diego schools.

The Saints were not trusted, had no district boundaries, and were not believed when they claimed to abide by the same CIF rules as other schools.

Athletic director John Perry had given the Saints, coached by the hard-charging Herb Corriere, a game in 1927 and another this year.

The Hilltoppers’ 6-2 victory marked the last season the teams would play again until 1946 and that was followed by another hiatus until 1957, when the Saints finally gained membership in the City Prep League.

Alfred Ritchey (white jersey) is surrounded by gang of St. Augustine players in Cavemen's 6-02 victory.

Alfred Ritchey (white jersey) is surrounded by gang of St. Augustine players in Cavemen’s 6-2 victory.

In the workup to this season’s contest, administrators from both schools denied an impending break in athletic relations.

A joint statement was issued by San Diego principal John Aseltine and Father O’Meara of St. Augustine.

“Athletic relations between the schools will continue in the future as they have been previously—in good harmony.  Differences concerning the reported ineligibility of certain St. Augustine players have been ironed out.”

Ex-Cavers playing for the Saints included Kendall (Bobo) Arnett,  Ashley Joerndt, Vic Limon, Frenchy MacLachlan, Blas Torres, and Bob Limon.

Rumors of the above being ineligible for the opening game in City Stadium were spiked by the school authorities after St. Augustine agreed to the following terms:

–No player 21 years or over will be allowed to play.

–A transfer player from San Diego High School must have a recommendation from principal John Aseltine.

–Athletes must be passed in their subjects to compete in any sport.

San Diego and the  Saints continued to meet occasionally in basketball and the schools’ first baseball game was in 1937.

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1928: Turbulent Season at San Diego

The Roaring Twenties were coming to their disastrous conclusion, a new school would rise in East San Diego honoring future president Herbert Hoover, who promised a chicken in every pot and a car in every garage, and San Diego High football was beginning a bumpy ride.

The 1927-28 school year had concluded John Aseltine’s first year as principal in June and the  Stanford University graduate was looking forward to a leisurely summer.

But things got busy for Aseltine a few weeks later, after a seemingly innocent meeting at the City Schools’ office by a visitor from Central California.

Charlie Church, coach at a junior high  in Fresno,  applied for a position in San Diego’s  physical education department, possibly in basketball or gym classes.

Church, who had coached at Santa Monica and as recently as 1926 at Alhambra, among other stops, was told that no change in coaching personnel was anticipated at the high school.

“Keep my name in case anything comes up,” said Church, perhaps smiling to himself.

Church was connected.

–The superintendent of the San Diego City Schools was Walter Hepner, who had hired Church years before when Hepner was boss in the Fresno school system.

AUGUST 28:  The San Diego Union reported that John Hobbs, head football coach at San Diego since 1927,  had suddenly resigned.

Hobbs was 5-4 in 1927.

Hobbs was 5-4 in 1927.

Hobbs, 27, apparently was making a career change, accepting a position with a newly-organized “building and loan operation” in Tucson, Arizona.

A star athlete at the University of Arizona in Tucson, Hobbs had been hired as basketball coach at San Diego after his graduation in 1923.

Hobbs succeeded John Perry as football coach when Perry took a leave from coaching following the 1926 season.

The departing Hobbs created a sour taste when it was learned that Hobbs had accepted his new position at least six weeks before the announcement came in the mail from Arizona.

LET’S HIRE TEX

SEPT. 2: The San Diego school board announced that it had accepted Hobbs’ resignation “without regret.”

Gerald (Tex) Oliver, head coach at Santa Ana High, was favored by members of the board.

Board member Claude Woolman declared that it had been a mistake to let Oliver go to Santa Ana, where Oliver was hired in 1927.

Oliver moved on to Santa Ana.

Oliver had moved on and up.

”He developed a team that won the state Class B football championship,” said Woolman.  “In spite of this, Hobbs was made the football coach and Oliver left.”

Jacob Weinberger, another board member, hinted that Hobbs had cozied up to the former San Diego principal, Glenn Perkins.

Oliver, who had been elevated from Memorial Junior High, actually coached the Hilltoppers’ lightweights to the Southern California title in 1925.  There was no state championship for B’s.

SEPT. 3: Football practice began with interim coach John Perry, now the head of the physical education department, and assistant coach Dewey (Mike) Morrow welcoming about 80 candidates.

MANY NAMES SURFACE

–Billy Gutteron, a former Hilltopper athlete and University of Nevada player, seemed to be the favorite to replace Hobbs if Oliver was unavailable.

Grossmont’s Jack Mashin, Point Loma’s Clarence Cartwright, Monrovia coach and ex-Hilltopper Hobbs Adams, and Walter Davis, late of the University of Arizona, also were mentioned, along with Roy Richert, coach at an Oakland high school, and Bernard Nichols of Oceanside.

Gutteron and Adams attended the first day of practice.  Adams claimed he was there hoping to schedule a game with the Hilltoppers in the last week of September or first week in October.

LOUSY PAY?

SEPT 4: Oliver’s name was withdrawn.

A story that did not cite sources said Oliver “has no intention of returning to the Hilltop.”

“Oliver coached here two years ago and left because of the low salary paid to coaches in San Diego, reported to be the lowest of any section in the state,” the story continued.

Oliver could make only $2,100 at San Diego because he had not taught for at least 10 years in the local school system.  San Diego coaches with 10 years usually were paid $2,400 per school year, although there was a ceiling of $2,600.

SAME CHURCH, DIFFERENT PEW

Church had been around, knew people.

Church had been around, knew people.

SEPT. 8:  Charlie Church was announced as the new head coach by principal John Aseltine.

Aseltine went public following a conference with superintendent Hepner and W.A. (Bud) Kearns, supervisor of physical education for the City Schools.

“We have talked to Church and studied his record carefully,” said Aseltine, following the lead of  Hepner. “He is a top-notch coach and we think we have made a real find.”

Church “realizes he faces a big task in building up a strong team at this late stage,” Aseltine said.  “He said he is ready to pitch in and do his utmost to put the team in the running for the Coast League championship.”

SEPT. 10: Church arrived on campus but did not take part in actual coaching until Sept. 14.

SHORT RETIREMENT

John Hobbs was not long for a three-piece suit.

Sept. 24: An announcement from the desert was that Hobbs was joining J.P. McKale’s University of Arizona staff as backfield coach.

Hobbs eventually returned to San Diego and worked several years as a game official.  He passed away at age 61 in 1962 and is buried at Fort Rosecrans.

SHORT TENURE

SEPT. 29: Church coached  a 6-2 victory over St. Augustine  and stunningly resigned after the game.  Church urged Aseltine to name Mike Morrow as his replacement.

Morrow stepped in for Hilltoppers.

Morrow stepped in for Hilltoppers.

The departing coach explained  that Morrow was better suited for the job because Morrow was versed in the system used by Perry and Hobbs and that the players, also familiar, could adapt more quickly.

Those close to the program felt that Church took the football job only to ensure a position at the school.

SEPT. 30:  Aseltine, getting used to praising a man he hardly knows and who likely was not Aseltine’s choice, was forced to make another public statement.

“We feel that Church would enjoy a successful season at the helm of the Hilltop gridiron crew but he believes his lack of knowledge of the material…would retard the squad’s progress,” the principal said.

Aseltine pointed out that Church’s “first love” was basketball.

The native of Lowell, Massachusetts,  became the Hilltoppers’ basketball coach for the next three seasons (and handled junior varsity football), then gave way to Morrow, who coached the 1935-36 team to the school’s only Southern California championship.

Church remained on staff in charge of intramural sports but eventually moved to Long Beach Poly and won championships in basketball.

SPY IN THE HOUSE?

It was S.O.P. for the Coast League.

Class B players were to be weighed, measured, and required to show birth certificates for the establishment of exponents.

The procedure took place at each league entity and was  conducted by a member of an opposing school.  Walter Bell, head of physical education at Long Beach Poly, did the honors at San Diego.

One of the rules was that a player attempting to play Class B for a second season could not weigh less than in the previous year.

Bell didn’t know it, but he was in the company of several future prominent San Diegans.

B squad members included Irvine (Cotton) Warburton, who’d go on to an all-America career at USC, enter the film industry, and earn an Academy award for cinematography in 1964 for the movie Mary Poppins.

Lineman Christy Gregovich was known a generation later as sports columnist Christy Gregg for The San Diego Union.

Raconteur Bob MacDonald owned the renowned Palace Buffet downtown and was a prominent sports figure.

Art Jacobs built his business, San Diego Periodicals, into a leading distributor of magazines and printed material.

WHERE’S THE BEEF?

Derrick hoisted 125- and 115-pounder for photo op.

Derrick hoisted 125- and 115-pounders for photo op.

Point Loma listed seven linemen whose weight ranged from 125 pounds to 272.

Tackle Jim Derrick actually weighed 292 when fully dressed out.

The Pointers said  the 16-year-old, 6 foot, 1-1/2-inch  Derrick may have been  the heaviest football player in the country, although documentation was not forthcoming.

Point Loma also boasted a 115-pound receiver, Lorne Shirtin.

THE THIRD TEAM

Members of San Diego’ Junior B squad were promised ice cream by coach Fred Klicka if they scored 20 points against Mountain Empire.  Klicka’s youngsters defeated the Mountain Empire varsity, 20-0.

The Juniors served as a development eleven for the B team, as several players taxied back and forth.

B TEAM GETS A

Forfeit victories over Pasadena and Long Beach Poly, teams to which it had been outscored, gave coach Glenn Broderick’s B squad a perfect, 7-0 record.

Since 1924, when B competition was inaugurated, the Hilltoppers were 27-4-1, including 7-1 versus Southern California teams.  Most of the games were  against local varsities and reserves.

The Bees were scheduled to play Santa Monica for the Southern California championship but the influenza strike of early November canceled that option.

MORE FORFEITS

San Diego’s varsity forfeited its final game (see below) but was the recipient of a forfeit victory although on the short end of a 13-6 score against Pasadena.

CIF officials made the Bulldogs forfeit when it was discovered that 5 varsity and B players belonged to outlawed school fraternities.  The anti-fraternity rule was statewide.

20sciflogo0001Forfeitures also struck Santa Ana. The Saints were penalized after their 18-0 win over Glendale and following an 0-0 tie with Long Beach Poly.

Santa Ana had been using a player who had transferred from Bakersfield but lived with his father in Whittier, about 25 miles and at least an hour and a half away.

Tex Oliver appealed the forfeits and the Saints won one appeal, rescinding the forfeit to Glendale.

San Diego was on the receiving end of a unique ruling at the start of practice.  Lineman Tom Salisbury was declared ineligible because Salisbury had attended  a business college in Los Angeles over the summer.

The CIF ruled that the “college” was not accredited.

FLU STRIKES AGAIN

Compared to  the world pandemic of 1918, a flu epidemic this year was not nearly as deadly but still hit with force.  About 50,000 Americans were said to perish from the virus and it struck teams in Southern California.

San Diego forfeited its final game to Santa Ana when coach Mike Morrow reported that 16 players were confined at home.

Santa Ana coach Tex Oliver said the Saints would postpone the game for a week, or until the Hilltoppers were fit, but San Diego officials declined.

They’d had enough.

Despite the up-and-down season, San Diego's Bill Schutte (inset) was one of the best players in the Coast League. Halfback Ted Wilson (right) and Bill Casey (center and next to Schutte and third from left in photo of line) each had sons who starred a generation later, Wilson's Ted and Gary at Hoover, and Casey's Bill, at Clairemont.

Despite the up-and-down season, San Diego’s Bill Schutte (inset) was one of the best players in the Coast League. Halfback Ted Wilson (right) and Bill Casey (center and third from left next to Schutte in photo of linemen) each had sons who starred a generation later, Wilson’s Ted and Gary at Hoover, and Casey’s Bill, at Clairemont.

SIGNS OF THE TIME

The police “dry squad” raided a house at 3736 Tennyson Street in Loma Portal, where it arrested nine men and five women, and seized 500 quarts of beer and bottles of gin and whisky.

When police arrived, those arrested were seated around a large living room, enjoying their libations.  A search of the house, near Chatsworth Blvd. and blocks from Point Loma High, also revealed a large quantity of grape wine being made.

Because of the large number of persons arrested, it was necessary for the police patrol wagon to make two trips to the jail.

Also popped was a taxi-cab driver for providing information on where intoxicants could be purchased.

All were released on bail.

UP IN THE AIR

Schlee (left) and Brock liked to fly.

Schlee (left) and Brock liked to fly.

Edward Schlee and William Brock set an American flight endurance record of 59 hours, 30 minutes, 1 second, after takeoff from Rockwell Field, which eventually became North Island Naval Air Station.

The flight followed a route that repeatedly covered the area up and down the Coronado Silver Strand.

The pair extended their travel during daytime, flying as far as Jacumba, 65 miles east.   Several planes would accompany the Bellanca monoplane. Pilots of those craft notified Schlee and Brock of news bulletins announcing their progress.

The aviators realized during the trip that their attempt at the world record was in jeopardy. They had discovered a leaky fuel valve.

On the final day a note was dropped to the ground crew.

“If we have not landed by dark turn the lights on, as the gas is running low,” was the message.

Schlee and Brock were seven hours short of the global mark.

SHORTER POSTSEASON

The postseason was being shortened.   A “Tri-League Champion”  would come from the Southern, or Imperial or Orange County circuits.

Coronado, the Southern League champion, was eliminated in the first round by Calexico, 7-0.

Long seasons in which some teams played and practiced well into December were a continual headache for the CIF, according to president Harry Moore of Long Beach Poly.

Many solutions were tried until a consistent format was adopted in the years following World War II.

BEAUTIFUL HOME

For basketball.

San Diego architect Frank Allen’s plans were approved for a new gymnasium on the North edge of campus.  The facility would have room for about 800 persons on expansive bleacher seating.

Two regulation courts, the first in the city,  were to be side by side, allowing room for additional seating that would bring capacity to 2,000.  The gym would be ready for the 1930-31 season.

BELIEVE IT OR NOT

The game story for the 6-6 tie between Escondido and Grossmont declared that Escondido completed 24 of 25 attempted passes.

INVENTIVE VIKINGS

Following an example coach George Dotson said was introduced by Stanford University and the U.S. Military Academy, La Jolla replaced the traditional water boy with a rolling water tank, capable of holding more H2-o and able to dispense at a faster pace.

The machine was made by students in one of the school’s industrial arts classes.

The water boy still was needed to hustle the tank onto the field when players were injured or play was stopped.

QUICK KICKS

The San Diego County Football Officials’ Association was founded on Sept. 23 in a meeting of coaches and officials at San Diego State…Army-Navy’s 25-0 win over Los Angeles Loyola represented the Cubs’ first loss in two seasons…they were 9-0 in 1927…Grossmont players wore black armbands in honor of school trustee A.B. Foster, who passed the week of a game with Point Loma…San Diego was  the largest school in the area, and one of  the largest in the state, with 3,022 students in three grades…second largest in the County was Roosevelt Junior High with 1,550…Coronado was passing on the last play against Sweetwater…Frank Green’s pass to Eric Afferson was in the air as the gun sounded…Afferson scored on the 30-yard play and the Islanders won, 32-7…Green missed an earlier game because he had cut his hand on a band saw…Sweetwater band director Jimmy Seebold took his group downtown and it serenaded the offices of The San Diego Union and Evening Tribune…Bill Schutte, San Diego’s 172-pound lineman, was named to the all-Coast League squad and went on to a long football career, eventually serving as San Diego State’s head coach from 1948-55…Schutte’s younger brother George was on the 1941 and ’42 Hilltoppers teams and later was head coach at San Diego Junior College…Coronado represented football heaven…coach Amos Schaffer’s team had recently dedicated a new, turf field, which observers said would do credit to a college, and a field house with lockers  were under construction…a big one who got away was Santa Ana’s Alvin Reboin, one of the top runners in Southern California and a former Roosevelt  star…senior class president at Escondido was William (Bill) Bailey, destined to coach outstanding teams at San Diego…”The most discouraging prospects in my six years at Grossmont,” said Jack Mashin, whose 1927 team was 8-0-3 and won the Southern California minor division crown but fell to 2-5-1 this season…

 

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1941:  “I Want to Play Someone I Can Beat”

33VanPatten and logo0001That refrain was heard early and often in the CIF Southern Section.  It is heard today, more than 100 years later.

Coaches, players, administrators, fans, even the media, want to see their teams positioned to win or at least able to compete evenly.

That’s the way it was when the interscholastic federation was formed in 1913, as about 30 high schools from Santa Barbara south actually were playing football, in 5 or 6 very loosely formed “leagues”.

The latest attempt to find competitive balance resulted this year.  Schools of substantial enrollment tried something radically different.

According to Southern Section historian John Dahlem, commissioner Seth Van Patten on May 18, 1940, appointed a committee to study re-leaguing, specifically as it was related to the CIF’s larger entities, i.e., San Diego, Hoover, Long Beach Poly, and others.

Van Patten named four administrators to the group, including the No. 2 man at San Diego High, vice principal Edward Taylor.

All-CIF end Eldon Johnson welcomed Roy Engle to Hoover coaching staff in a year of change for Cardinals and Coast League.

All-CIF end Eldon Johnson welcomed Roy Engle to Hoover coaching staff in a year of change for Cardinals and Coast League.

Excerpted from the CIF Annual Report for 1940-41:

–The “reorganization committee” was charged with addressing the “problems of releaguing.”

–The group met four times during the first semester of the 1940-41 school year and presented its recommendations to the section’s Executive Council on Feb. 1, 1941:

“(a) That all leagues except the Coast League (which included San Diego, Poly, and Hoover) remain as set up at that time.

“(b) That the Coast League be disbanded.

“(c) That for Class A football only a “Major Conference” of seventeen large schools be set up and a schedule for a two-year period be adopted.”

(The seventeen large schools were Alhambra, Alhambra Mark Keppel, Beverly Hills, Compton, Glendale, Glendale Hoover, San Diego Hoover, Inglewood, Long Beach Poly, Lawndale Leuzinger, Pasadena, Redondo Beach Redondo, San Diego, Santa Barbara, Santa Monica, Whittier, and Long Beach Wilson).

“(d) That in all sports except Class A football, San Diego Hoover, Poly, Pasadena, San Diego, and Santa Barbara compete as free-lance.

“(e) That the five schools named in paragraph (d) elect a representative to the Council.”

LOOKS GOOD TO US

The Council approved the recommendation in paragraph (c) and a schedule was drawn up for 1941 with the understanding that for 1942 the same schedule would be followed with sites of games being reversed.

The events in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, on December 7, 1941, changed everything.

The Major Conference lasted one year as the CIF retreated and struggled through World War II, but the conference served as another example of the unending difficulty of scheduling and  finding balance.

Putting all of the big schools together seemingly gave those with fewer enrollment numbers a more level field on which to compete for league championships.

“It was the problem of individual schools wanting to determine where they were re-leagued and what gave them their best possible chance of winning,” said Dahlem.   “Same problem today.

“The schools which hadn’t done well wanted into an ‘easier competitive league’ and were tired of never winning a big championship.

“The seventeen-school conference,” Dahlem added, “was the temporary answer to age-old questions of re-leaguing, meaning,  ‘I want to play someone I can beat.’”

The top three finishers in the Major Conference qualified for the playoffs.  The winner of the San Gabriel Valley League would provide a fourth postseason qualifier.

Talk of disbanding the playoffs often was on the table.  The playoffs would continue this season and a four-team bracket would take care of the postseason in two weeks.

FIX THE COAST LEAGUE

San Diego coach Joe Beerkle could be contemplating Cavers' departure from Coast League as tackle George Schutte (middle) and center Roy Guy concentrate on football in coach's hands.

San Diego coach Joe Beerkle could be contemplating Cavers’ departure from Coast League as tackle George Schutte (middle) and center Roy Guy concentrate on football in coach’s hands.

San Diego was a charter member with Long Beach Poly, Whittier, Santa Ana, Pasadena, and Fullerton when the Coast League was re-constituted in 1923-24, but schools came and went as travel and competition was problematic.

Glendale and South Pasadena joined in 1925-26 as Fullerton dropped out.  Whittier and South Pas bailed in 1929-30.  Long Beach Wilson came aboard in 1930-31.

Wilson left the League and Fullerton returned in 1931-32. Fullerton was out again in 1933-34.  Pasadena and Glendale said sayonara after the 1934-35 school year.

Always strong with from six to eight schools, the Coast was down to four, San Diego, Alhambra, Poly, and Santa Ana, in 1935-36. The number returned to six in 1936-37, when San Diego Hoover and Long Beach Wilson were added.

Charter member Santa Ana dropped out in 1937-38.  Wilson was gone again in 1938-39 as only Alhambra, Hoover, and Poly remained.

Alhambra exited after 1938-39. The Coast was down to San Diego, Hoover, and Poly.

Van Patten dropped hammer on Oceanside.

Van Patten dropped hammer on Oceanside.

John Dahlem said there was a general consensus before the 1941 re-leaguing process that “if the Coast League could be settled for football  re-leaguing problems would be settled.”

It never was settled.

The Major Conference may have been a good idea, but W.W. II ended that option.

The war ended in 1945, promising prosperity and the G.I. Bill,  but the Coast League never regained its early form.

By 1947-48 there was a shaky alliance of San Diego, Hoover, Pasadena, Compton, Pasadena Muir, Grossmont (except football) and Bakersfield (football only).

In 1950, San Diego, Grossmont, and Hoover helped form the San Diego City Prep League.

WARY EYE ON TEAMS IN SOUTH

“Not many schools wanted to play San Diego because of its prowess and the distance to travel,” said John Dahlem.

Other factors were in play.

“There were many complaints against Oceanside High School and its lack of control over eligibility, and the Metropolitan League (of which Oceanside was a member) was under constant scrutiny,” said Dahlem.

Van Patten had suspended two Oceanside players in 1940 after determining they were illegally recruited and forced the Pirates to forfeit two victories.

CALL HIM BIFF

Gardner helmed Sweetwater's 8-0 season.

Gardner helmed Sweetwater’s 8-0 season.

Cletis Gardner, the former Villanova fullback who enjoyed 35-year career in San Diego as coach, game official (several years in the NFL), and master of ceremonies, guided Sweetwater to an 8-0 record and the school’s first undefeated season.

It wasn’t until 1972, when Dave Lay led the Red Devils to a 12-0 record, that Sweetwater repeated an all-victorious season.

Freeman Moeser led the Red Devils and the Metropolitan League with 8 touchdowns in league play.

AVAILABLE REAL ESTATE

Escondido had a new coach, Bill Duncan, who came South from El Monte to replace Charlie McEuen, who replaced Marvin Clark at La Jolla, where McEuen was joined by assistant  coach Don Clarkson.

Duncan moved into the house in Escondido that McEuen vacated.

The Cougars’ boss had a history with San Diego.  He was an assistant coach to Wallace (Chief) Newman at Covina, which defeated San Diego, 13-6, in an infamous Southern Section championship in 1925.

Covina was found guilty of using players from the Riverside Sherman Institute , but the Colts never gave up the title or the championship trophy.

ENGLE BACK AT HOOVER

Roy Engle, the star of Hoover’s first victory over San Diego in 1935, returned to his alma mater and was an assistant coach to Pete Walker.

The 23-year-old Engle took over for Walker early the week of the San Diego game when Walker was laid up with the flu.

Engle the following spring coached Hoover to the Southern California baseball championship.  Among Cardinals standouts on the baseball team was future major leaguer Ray Boone, whose two sons, Bob and Bret had long careers in the majors, as did grandson Aaron.

LONGEST EVER?

Hoover’s Ben Chase, who did not attend school in 1939-40, returned as Hoover’s quarterback and threw perhaps the longest pass in area history, 63 yards in the air.

From his 45-yard line Chase reared back and flung a towering spiral that end Eldon Johnson caught 8 yards deep in the end zone, according to writer Bob Angus of The San Diego Union.

Pasadena weathered Chase’s shot and went home with an 18-13 victory.

Chase’s throw bettered the 57-yards-in-the-air completion by San Diego High alum Harold (Brick) Muller, who connected with teammate Brodie Stephens in the 1921 Rose Bowl.

Some reports disagreed on Muller’s distance.  His Wikipedia profile says 53 yards.  Another says his pass was 70 yards.

San Diego counted on halfback Archie McGrath.

San Diego counted on halfback Archie McGrath.

LOCKOUT

San Diego coach Joe Beerkle padlocked gates to Balboa Stadium on the first day of practice before the Hoover game and issued a terse statement to the media following practice:  “We worked on offense and defense.”

Beerkle the next day held relay races, seniors against underclassmen, on the upper practice field, then took the team into the stadium for another closed workout.

San Diego defeated Hoover in the big game, 19-7, before about 12,000 persons.

SIGN OF THE TIMES

Parking meters were being installed downtown, necessitating a need for taxi stands, hotel manager H. A. Williams argued before the city council.

Williams said that unless there were cab stands hundreds of hacks would be forced to “cruise” for fares.

Traffic congestion was growing, accelerated  by private and public vehicles used by thousands of new residents  working in the suddenly critical defense industry.

SIGN OF THE TIME, CONT.

On Oct. 3, 1941,  Jim Londos defended his share of the world heavyweight wrestling championship by pinning Juan Umberto in the 43rd minute of a one-hour, one-fall match in the Coliseum, 15th and E Streets.

Danno O’Mahoney won over LaVerne Baxter by a disqualification.  Myron Cox pinned Manuel Rodriguez via a Japanese headlock.  Chris Zaharias defeated Pete Peterson and Hardboiled Hardy Kruiskamp took the measure of Vic Hill.

HONORS

Hoover end Eldon Johnson was named to the all-Southern California third team, the only local athlete honored.

QUICK KICKS

About 100 boys and girls from Hoover took part in “Ice Activities” at Glacier Gardens on Harbor Drive…Ice skating as a CIF sport?…The battle between Army-Navy and Brown Military academies was postponed a week as cadets were released to go home for the Thanksgiving holiday…the teams battled to a 6-6 tie when they got together days later…Hoover and Grossmont kicked off at 3:45 p.m. for a day-night single header…first half was played under the sun, second half under the lights at Hoover…San Diego and Hoover defeated Point Loma and La Jolla, 21-7, in the third annual City Schools carnival before about 7,000 in Balboa Stadium…San Diego High vice principal Edward Taylor  became principal of the new, Kearny Junior-Senior high on Kearny Mesa…rained out on Friday night, Hoover and Santa Barbara met the next afternoon on the Cardinals’ gridiron…the visiting Dons, destined to win the Major Conference and CIF titles, coasted to a 27-0 win…it was a strange year at Fallbrook…the Warriors finished with a 4-0-1 record to win the Southern League, then forfeited their final game to Brown Military…along the way, head coach Forrest Lindsay stepped down after three games and was replaced by Lloyd Dever and Charles Coutts….

Red Devils rolled with Freeman Moeser.

Red Devils rolled with Freeman Moeser.

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2015: Hurdler Bob Fortin, Coach Morris Shepherd

Track standout Bob Fortin, 68, and Vista and Chula Vista head coach Morris Shepherd, 95, passed.

Fortin was one of top hurdlers in the San Diego Section and had a best time of :14.7 in the 120-yard high hurdles as a senior at Crawford in 1964.

“Snortin” Fortin, as he was affectionately known because of the guttural sounds Fortin made exerting himself over the barriers, had the fourth best time in the area.

Morrie Shepherd was head coach at Vista in 1948 and Chula Vista in 1949 and ‘50, with an overall record of 13-12-1.

The 1948 Vista Panthers were 7-2, 4-0 in the Southern League, and outscored league opponents, 148-0.

Vista defeated San Dieguito, 20-0, for the league championship on Armistice Day but were beaten, 20-13, by Tustin in the Southern California lower division championship game.

Shepherd was on the staff at Sir Francis Drake High in San Anselmo and was head of driver training for the Tamalpais School District for many years before retiring in 1981 and returning to the San Diego area.

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