Daniel Gaona: High school triumphs put San Manuel over the top

Softball crown, triple winner at track meet spark parade today
2013-05-17T00:00:00Z 2013-05-17T08:16:30Z Daniel Gaona: High school triumphs put San Manuel over the topDaniel Gaona Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
May 17, 2013 12:00 am  • 

For a few hours Saturday night, San Manuel may have been the happiest place in Arizona.

After all, the 3,500-person town had plenty to celebrate.

San Manuel High School won its first softball state title since 1994, and Miners track star Wayne Newman went out a triple champion at the state meet.

"Believe it, we were happy," softball coach Deanne Brewer said. "It was so exciting, we were so proud of all of our kids."

Six days later, the celebration is still going.

The town will hold a parade at 3:30 p.m. today to honor the success the Miners had last weekend.

It's been a whirlwind week for Brewer, who - like her players - has become somewhat of a local celebrity.

"It's funny," she said. "I walk into stores and people I don't even know are coming up to me and saying 'Congratulations, that's so awesome!' "

While Newman came into the season as a defending champion in two events and was expected to repeat, the softball team was the complete opposite.

A couple of preseason injuries made Brewer think this was going to be a rebuilding year. Instead, the team finished the season with 16 straight wins and won a title with nine underclassmen, making the Miners a favorite to win again next season.

"I can't think of a season (like this) that's ever happened to me before in coaching," said Brewer, who has coached at San Manuel for 14 years.

Some of her stars included freshman pitcher Lyana Waddell who went 21-6 and struck out 117 batters, and sophomore co-captain Felicia Medina who batted .574 and drove in 57 runs including two that put the Miners up 4-2 in the final inning of the championship game, a 5-4 victory over Phoenix Northwest Christian. Brewer is a San Manuel native and played on the 1990 state championship team. She knows winning a state title there is a big deal, not just for the school but for the town. It's a sense of pride that is irreplaceable.

"We had so much support," Brewer said. "People just came to watch the game. They didn't even have kids or relatives on the team. That's just how San Manuel is."

Sabino lineman Mike weighs offer from USC

Sabino junior offensive lineman Andrew Mike received his 13th scholarship offer on Wednesday, and it was a big one.

USC became the seventh Pac-12 school to make an offer to Mike, who is rated a four-star prospect by the Scout.com recruiting service. Arizona and Arizona State have already made offers to the 6-foot-7-inch, 285-pound lineman; Michigan State will make its second visit in two weeks, Sabercats coach Jay Campos said. There's a good chance the Spartans will make an offer to him then.

Ex-Dorado named Pac-12 freshman of the year

Canyon del Oro grad Kayla Bonstrom, the 2012 Gatorade state player of the year, hasn't missed a beat at Stanford. She was named the Pac-12 freshman of the year and earned all-conference first-team honors Wednesday. Bonstrom batted .414 in 55 games this year. She hit 11 doubles and eight home runs and led the Cardinal with 51 RBIs.

Mustangs relay team shines at state meet

Sahuarita's 1,600-meter relay team of Yasheika Beckaroo, Emily Bliven, Taylor McClelland and Melissa Williams ran away with the Division II title in a speedy 3 minutes 53.68 seconds, the second-fastest time Saturday night overall.

The Division II girls high jump also went past deadline that night, and Catalina Foothills junior Emily Gerard, the defending state champion, finished second (5 feet 6 inches) based on attempts.

Lost in the chaos earlier that day, I forgot to mention Pusch Ridge Christian senior Elle Uldrich. She won the Division IV girls triple jump with a distance of 35-4 1/2.

Hawks finish 10th at golf championships

Tanque Verde's Michael Rooyakkers was the top local finisher (16th) at last weekend's Division III golf state championships in Prescott. The Hawks finished 10th as Rooyakkers shot a 151 over two days at the Antelope Hills Golf Course.

On StarNet: Keep up with the latest in high school sports at azstarnet.com/sports/high-school

Contact high school sports coordinator Daniel Gaona at dgaona@azstarnet.com or 807-7761. On Twitter @DanielGaona13

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