James Membreno/ Courier A photo illustration of PCC athletes Dariel Johnson, Katy Coats, Carmen Ung, Danielle Ruiz and Marco Martinez on Tuesday, May 19, 2020.
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Winning matters! Does your individual production lead to team success? It’s not enough to be a regular starter or be a good role player. To be on this list, you have to be one of the best at PCC, one of best in the South Coast Conference (SCC), and damn near one of the best in the state. And it’s only fair to separate the best into three separate categories. The MVPs, the game changers, and the leaders in descending order. We’re also listing the best team as a surprise. And if you’re not on this list as a student-athlete, step your game up! All stats were obtained from the California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA). 

MVP’s 

1. Dariel Johnson

Johnson led the women’s basketball team to back-to-back playoff appearances and a 37-20 record over the past two seasons. Upon meeting Johnson, the first thing she said was “let’s go out and get this championship.” 

Her coach Joe Peron expressed that if there was a list, Johnson had to be on it. 

“Johnson is first to have a triple-double with block shots and a number of other awards,” Peron said. “I think she is a superb athlete with excellent knowledge of the sport and a good understanding of the game.”

13.4 points, 16.4 rebounds, 3.5 blocks, 3.1 assists, 2.5 steals average per game. 

 -SCC MVP of 2019-2020 of women’s basketball

 -First Team All-State in California for 2 years straight

 -2nd in the state in blocks per game 

 -2nd in the state in rebounds 

 -PCCs all-time leader in rebounds (848) and blocked shots (218)

 -4 rebounds away from having a back-to-back 400 rebound season

 -13th all-time in scoring at PCC for women’s basketball

 -2019 PCC Women’s Athlete of the Year

 2. Carmen Ung

Ung is a dynamic swimmer. Her best race is the breaststroke and if there was a season, there is no doubt that she’d be fighting Johnson for the number one spot. With only one season under her belt, she carries a lot of weight on campus.

 -CO-MVP of the SCC

 -Silver Medal in the 100-yard breaststroke at the CCCAA State Championship Meet

 -Fastest time in the 50-yard breaststroke at PCC

 -Fastest time in the 100-yard breaststroke at PCC

 -Fastest time in the 200-yard breaststroke at PCC

 -4th fastest time in the 200-yard medley

 -2nd fastest time in the 50-yard Free at PCC

 -3rd fastest time in the 100-yard Free at PC

 3. Katy Coats

Coats was the brightest shining star on campus this season. Right out of the gate, Coats led the PCC women’s soccer team in scoring. She scored 11 goals, 2 assists, and 24 overall points. She scored 84% of the goals in her freshman year. Coats exploded as a sophomore, almost tripling her performance from her freshman year. She scored 31 goals, 2 assists, and 116 points. She led the state in scoring and points for the bulk of the year but was caught from behind when her team failed to make the playoffs. Her 31 goals ranked 2nd, 2 assists ranked 17th, and 73 points ranked 2nd all in the state. 

“I am most proud of my team honestly,” Coats said. “We had a lot of misfortunate injuries and not many things went our way these past two years and we were still able to get some good results. They really helped me get those numbers.”

The Game Changers

 1. Marco Martinez

2019 PCC Male Athlete of the Year was teammate Gabe Arellano, but now it’s Martinez’s time to shine. A true hermit off the field, Martinez took off to Montana right as the pandemic hit. However, on the field, Martinez embodied the one team spirit. Literally, he’s been hit by a lot of pitches. But that’s his character. He’s a team-first guy. 

 -388 batting average /.574 on base percentage /.627 slug

 -1st in on-base percentage in the state

 -3rd in walks in the state 

 -38th in HBP (hit by pitch) in the state

 -43rd in batting average in the state

 -27th in RBI in the state

 2. Danielle Ruiz

.436 batting average /.592 on base percentage /.527 slug 

Third, in stolen bases in the state, Ruiz constantly worked on her speed and got off to make sure she was the fastest on the diamond. Her leadership is what sets her apart. Even though she’s always complimenting her teammates in interviews, her team always had her back. 

“She’s a strong-minded kid with clear goals,” head coach Monica Tantlinger said. “She doesn’t sugar coat things. She is blunt and to the point and her performance and accountability make people follow her. She wants to win and will compete to do so.”

“Danny Ruiz is a beast and we’re super lucky to have her,” teammate Valley Febles said. “I wouldn’t want her on the opposing side! Her determination to win and love for softball is what she brings to this team. I can’t wait to see what she does next year!”

 -Tied for 4th in walks in the state

 -3rd in stolen bases in the state

 -18th in the state in on-base percentage

The Leaders

1. Fernanda Alvarez and Jackie Collier

Teammates in the water, Alvarez, and Collier are two of the baddest women’s water polo players in the SCC division. They led PCC to their best finish in 12 years, finishing 4th at the SCC Conference Tournament. Both were named First Team All-SCC.

Fernanda Alvarez

 -6th in the SCC in scoring with 61 goals and 23rd in the state

 -6th in the SCC in points with 85

 -6th in the SCC in assist with 24

Jackie Collier

 -176 saves ranked her 17th in the state

2. Mario Urbina

Marco is another freshman who led his team in scoring. He scored 7 goals, 10 assists, and had a total of 24 points. The midfielder didn’t have it easy when he first arrived on campus.

“Being one of the top 10 athletes at PCC is a big honor,” Urbina said. “Because I’m a freshman and I wasn’t even a starter at the beginning of the season. I had to work to gain my starting position. I’m really proud of how I worked up to play soccer at the college level and be able to study while doing what I love the most.”

 -5th in goals in the SCC-South

 -Named All-South Second Team

 -Assist to goal ratio is .48 or 3rd in SCC-South

3. Cosette Balmy

Balmy is equivalent to Tony Parker if Dariel Johnson is her Tim Duncan. Most California natives want to be connected to Kobe and Shaq, but the Carribean Island girl from the French Republic of Martinique may have another professional athlete in mind. She’s a jitterbug who dances in the lane for layups and preys upon opposing point guards. It’s impossible to mention the success of the PCC women’s basketball team without mentioning its floor leader Balmy. 

 -29th in assists in the state

 -46th in steals in the state

4. Edward Norton

Norton doesn’t hold any glaring records in the state or even in his own division. But that’s why winning matters. His production led to his team’s success. As a freshman, playing in a two-quarterback system, he led PCC to their first winning record since 2008. He also helped PCC to the 10th ranked rushing attack. The only team on campus outside of the SCC in the American Pacific Division, Norton is only getting started. 

 -Passing percentage of 57.8%

 -Passing yards 875 yards 11 touchdowns and 2 interception

 -714 rushing yards and 6 rushing touchdowns

Best Team

There’s no way to create this team without talking about the Women’s Badminton team. They are hands down the best team on campus. The seas should part as they walk into the gym. They were undefeated this year before COVID-19 and at one point had a 50 game win streak. Coach Jen Ho might even be the best coach at PCC with back-to-back state titles in 2017 and 2018 and 5 SCC titles. Winning matters! 

Honorable Mentions: Jeremiah Hartfield, Austyn Helmuth, London Benford, Rasheed Wilson, Deandro Worrell, Craig Francois, Samantha Diaz, David Telles, Ernesto Angulo, Andrea Velasquez, Bryan Espinoza, and Steven Sandoval.

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