At 6-foot-2 and 175 pounds, he might bernconsidered “smallish” by today’s basketball standards. But there was nothingrnsmall about the play of Bill Bond, star forward for the St. Anthony Saints, whornbecame the first player from a local Catholic high school to be namedrnCalifornia Interscholastic Federation Player of the Year in 1953.

That was after a season in which thernSaints of Long Beach recorded their best season to date: 20 wins, 14 losses andrna third-place finish in the Catholic League. Leading St. Anthony’s attack wasrnBond, whose lanky frame moved quickly around the floor — so quickly in one gamernagainst Serra, in fact, that he poured in 59 points, a CIF single-game recordrnat the time, in a 74-62 victory.

For the year, Bond tallied 727 points,rnaveraging 22 per game, and finished his three-year St. Anthony career withrn1,537 points in 100 games. He was an easy first-team All-CIF selection by thernHelms Southern California Board of Basketball, and in 1953 was the firstrnCatholic high school player to be named “California’s Mr. Basketball,” an honorrnaccorded to the state’s outstanding prep “cager,” and later conferred on futurernHall of Famers Gail Goodrich and Bill Walton.

(Sidenote: Also on the All-CIF team inrn1953 was Woody Sauldsberry of Compton HS, who in 1958 was named the NBA’srnRookie of the Year. The All-LA City selections included two future baseballrnstars: Earl Battey of LA Jordan HS, a catcher for the Minnesota Twins, and LarryrnSherry, a 6-foot-1, 145-pound guard for Fairfax HS, whose outstanding reliefrnpitching made him 1959 World Series MVP for the L.A. Dodgers.)

Continuing his career at StanfordrnUniversity, Bond scored 1,013 points (14 per game) in 73 games (1954-57), and leftrnPalo Alto as one of Stanford’s top 10 all-time scorers. He went into business,rnserved two years in the California State Assembly (representing the northeastrnSan Fernando Valley, 1973-75), and died in 2005. He was elected to St.rnAnthony’s inaugural Athletic Hall of Fame class in 2013.


Players of the Year

In the 65 years since the selection ofrnBond, another 110 players from Catholic high schools in Los Angeles and Orangernhave been named CIF-Southern Section Players of the Year (POY) in boys’rnbasketball.

Some have earned multiple POY honors;rnsome have been named co-POY, including the Craven brothers (Derrick and Errick)rnof Bishop Montgomery; several (like Bond) have enjoyed stellar careers inrncollege; and a few have reached the NBA (including Mater Dei’s Stanley Johnson,rntwice POY at Mater Dei).

The aforementioned “Mr. Basketball”rnAward has been received by Mater Dei’s Tom Lewis (1985), LeRon Ellis (1987),rnTaylor King (2007) and Johnson (2014), as well as St. John Bosco’s JelanirnGardner (1994) and Bishop Montgomery’s Ethan Thompson (2017).

Following are the CIF-SS Players of thernYear in boys’ basketball from area Catholic high schools. (Note: Divisionalrnalignments since the early 1960s have been revised multiple times basedrnprimarily on enrollment, geography and/or competitive balance.)

1953: Bill Bond, St. Anthony.

1954: Larry Hauser, Mount Carmel.

1957: lvin Claiborne, Mt. Carmel.

1960: Steve Miller, Santa Clara.

1964: Andy Herrera, Santa Clara (1A).

1966: Guy Dimonte and Mike Terwilliger,rnBellarmine-Jefferson (1A).

1969: Keith Batiste, Verbum Dei (2A)

1970: Raymond Lewis, Verbum Dei (3A).

1971: Raymond Lewis, Verbum Dei (4A);rnLuther Philyaw and Terry Tate, Daniel Murphy (2A).

1972: Lewis Brown, Verbum Dei (4A).

1973: Lewis Brown, Verbum Dei (4A).

1975: David Greenwood, Verbum Dei (4A).

1977: Bill Duffy, Damien (3A).

1978: Leon Wood, St. Monica (1A).

1979: Cliff Pruitt, Verbum Dei (4A);rnLeon Wood, St. Monica (1A).

1981: Matt Colburn, Santa Clara (1A).

1982: Joe Fabian, Chaminade (1A).

1983: Matt Beuwsaert, Mater Dei (4A);rnJoe Wallace, Santa Clara (1A).

1985: Tom Lewis, Mater Dei (5A); StaceyrnCvijanovich, Santa Clara (2A).

1986: Keith Malone, Serra (5A).

1987: LeRon Ellis, Mater Dei (5A).

1988: Darrick Martin, St. Anthony (5A).

1989: Ed Stokes, St. Bernard (I); ShonrnTarver, Santa Clara (IV).

1990: Shon Tarver, Santa Clara (IV).

1991: Chris Cole, Santa Clara (IV).

1992: Reggie Geary, Mater Dei (I);rnChris Cole, Santa Clara (IV).

1993: Miles Simon, Mater Dei, and AkelirnJackson, Serra (I).

1994: Miles Simon, Mater Dei (I);rnJelani Gardner, St. John Bosco (II); Andre Miller, Verbum Dei (IV).

1995: Schea Cotton, Mater Dei (I).

1997: Kevin Augustine, Mater Dei (I).

1998: Ruben Douglas,rnBellarmine-Jefferson (IV).

1999: Marlon Palmer, Verbum Dei (IV);rnNick Jones and BJ Ward, Santa Clara (V).

2000: Cedric Bozeman, Mater Dei (IA);rnDerrick Craven and Errick Craven, Bishop Montgomery (IIIAA); Brandon Williams,rnSt Bernard (IVAA); Pearson Smith, St. Anthony (VAA).

2001: Cedric Bozeman, Mater Dei (IA);rnDerrick Craven and Errick Craven, Bishop Montgomery (IIIAA); Andrew Moore andrnKingsley Anyanwu, Crespi (IVAA).

2002: Omar Wilkes, Loyola (IA); WesleyrnWashington, Mater Dei (IIAA); John Haywood, Bishop Amat (IIIAA); FredrnWashington, Bishop Montgomery (IIIA); Richard Chaney, Verbum Dei (IVA).

2003: Omar Wilkes, Loyola (IA); EricrnLane, St. John Bosco (IIAA); Wesley Washington, Mater Dei (IIA); Amir Johnson,rnVerbum Dei (IVA).

2004: Tyler Smith, Santa Margaritarn(IIIAA); Stewart Kussler, St. Joseph/Santa Maria (IVAA); Mike Pagan, Verbum Deirn(IV).

2005: Mike Gerrity, Mater Dei (IIA);rnJames Keefe, Santa Margarita (IIIAA).

2006: Taylor King, Mater Dei (IIAA);rnJames Keefe, Santa Margarita (IIIAA); Donavan Bragg, Serra (IVAA).

2007: Taylor King, Mater Dei (IAA).

2008: David Wear, Mater Dei (IAA);rnAaron Ware and Justin Cobbs, Bishop Montgomery (IIAA).

2009: David Wear, Mater Dei (IAA);rnJules Montgomery, Chaminade (IVA).

2010: Tyler Lamb and Gary Franklin,rnMater Dei (1AA); Vaughn Autry and Keith Shamburger, Serra (3A); Blake Stanton,rnCrespi (4A); Daniel Soto, Padre Pio (6A).

2011: Joe Stein and Julian Harrell,rnLoyola (1A); Daniel Soto, Padre Pio (6A).

2012: Katin Reinhardt and XavierrnJohnson, Mater Dei (1AA); Chris Reyes, Damien (3AAA); Max Guerey and MarquezernColeman, Alemany (3A); Dekari Tucker, Serra (4AA); Brandon Randolph, St.rnBernard (5AA); Marcus LoVett Jr., Providence (5A).

2013: Stanley Johnson, Mater Dei (1AA);rnJeremy Hemsley, Damien (3AA); Isaac Hamilton, St. John Bosco (3A); LondonrnPerventes, Crespi (4AA).

2014: Stanley Johnson, Mater Deirn(Open); Devonte Klines, Santa Margarita (3AA); Johnnie Vassar, J.Serra (4AA).

2015: Stephen Thompson Jr., BishoprnMontgomery (Open); De'Anthony Melton, Crespi (4AA); Terrance Powell, St.rnBernard (5A).

2016: Chibueze Jacobs, NotrernDame/Sherman Oaks, and Kobe Smith, Serra (4AA); Jojo Walker, St. Joseph/SantarnMaria (5AA); Adam Amanuel, St. Bernard (5A).

2017: Ethan Thompson, Bishop Montgomeryrn(Open); Louis Bangal, St. Paul (3A).