St. Francis earns National Sports Medicine championship 

The Golden Knights of St. Francis High School performed extremely well at the National High School Sports Medicine Championships national level, earning the title of National Champion of the Alert Services (Small Schools) Division for the third year in a row.

In addition, 13 St. Francis students achieved All-American status by placing in the top 25 of the division. The competition, which took place on May 19, is presented by the American Academic Competition Institute (AACI).

AACI’s goal is to give students from across the nation an opportunity to excel in their chosen areas of study through online competition and testing. Therefore, AACI developed the online Sports Medicine Championships to help test and celebrate high school students’ Sports Medicine/Athletic Training knowledge.

Hundreds of students from high schools all across the country competed in this year’s national championships after qualifying from a field of thousands of students from more than 200 high schools at the regional level.

In an effort to reduce the high costs of creating a national championship, and in order to ensure that all qualified participants have the opportunity to compete at the national level, AACI created a unique online event to challenge the minds of high school students.

Schools that competed in a state/regional sports medicine competition and placed in the top 10 in their division were eligible to participate in this National Sports Medicine Championships Competition. St. Francis qualified for the National Championships earlier in the semester and 15 students tested on May 13.

St. Francis’ All-American List (Alert Services Division) included Harout Markarian (first), Andrew Cesta (second), Paolo Ramirez and Philip Jaeggi-Wong (tied for third), James Membreno (sixth) and Marco Miravite (eighth).

Austin Hawkins and Anthony Braun of Servite High School in Anaheim placed fifth and seventh, respectively, while the team finished second to St. Francis.


Bell-Jeff names new football coach and AD

Fred Martinez, a 1981 graduate of Bellarmine-Jefferson High School in Burbank, has been named its new athletic director and head football coach.

As a graduating senior Martinez played football, basketball, baseball, ran track and was the 1981 Tom Brown Award winner — the highest honor given to an athlete who played three or more sports at Bell-Jeff.

“I’m home to stay at Bell-Jeff,” Martinez said. “I am excited about restarting the foundation to sustain the athletic program here, pointing it in a new direction and setting the stage for longevity. It’s all about fundamentals — taking care of our athletes and helping them to develop their skills so that they will have lifelong success.”

Martinez most recently was athletic director at St. James the Less School and Holy Redeemer Middle School in La Crescenta. He has previously coached at Temple City High School, Hoover High School (Glendale), South Pasadena High School and Burbank High School.

New baseball coach named at St. John Bosco

Don Barbara has been named the new head baseball coach at St. John Bosco High School, Bellflower, succeeding longtime head coach Mario “Moon” Cordero.

Barbara will be coming to St. John Bosco from the University of Pacific in Stockton, where he was an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator for the Tigers. He brings more than 21 years of college and professional coaching experience, 17 at the NCAA Division I level.

He also was a first-team All American first baseman for the original Cal State Long Beach Dirtbags in 1990, batting .474 (on a team with future major leaguer Jason Giambi), and was an assistant coach there under Coaches Dave Snow and Mike Weathers.

 “Not only does Coach Barbara have an impressive baseball resume both as a player and as a coach, but he is also a man of strong character and possesses a compelling track record of being invested in the growth and success of his players beyond just success on the baseball diamond,” said Casey Yeazel, St. John Bosco’s principal.

“These qualities are consistent with our mission at St. John Bosco High School, and make Coach Barbara a natural and exciting fit for the Bosco community.”

Barbara will be moving to the Southland with his wife Corrie and two children, Madison and McKenzie.

CYO Track finals

The CYO Track & Field finals, CYO’s largest athletic event of the year held at Serra High School in Gardena, concluded a series of events that included 78 schools and 2,852 athletes in events at the Varsity and B (grades 5-6) level.

Eleven CYO records were broken during the day, with St. Rita (Sierra Madre) winning both the Varsity Girls and B Girls titles. Assumption BVM (Pasadena) won in Varsity Boys, and St. Philip the Apostle (Pasadena) earned the B Boys title.