NorCal repeats Athlete of the Month tandem in Sierra, Fresno City College Athletes

NorCal repeats Athlete of the Month tandem in Sierra, Fresno City College Athletes

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - For the first time in six years, the north region swept the California Community College Sports Information Association Athlete of the Month honors, and for the first time in the history of the awards the same two colleges and respective genders repeated from the previous month as Sierra women’s basketball guard Bri Moore and Fresno City state champion men’s wrestler Dylan Martinez are December’s AOTMs.

The monthly award which spans the CCC sports season from September through May has been in existence since 2005 when the CCCSIA began the task of choosing a male and female athlete of the month.

The selections of Moore and Martinez were purely coincidental after November’s winners that saw Sierra women’s golfer Nao Bando and Fresno soccer player Johnny Rodriguez named as top athletes last month.

Moore, a sophomore transfer, has emerged as one of the state’s best hoops players on the North region’s current No. 1 and undefeated school—Sierra. Martinez had the distinction of winning his second straight individual wrestling state title while being a member of back-to-back CCCAA state team championships for Fresno.

DECEMBER FEMALE ATHLETE OF THE MONTH
Bri Moore/So/Basketball/Sierra College
Moore put on a spectacular December as she led the undefeated Wolverines to a 7-0 record in the month. The 5-foot-8 point guard averaged 25 points, 8.4 assists, 8.1 steals and 5.4 rebounds. She dazzled with two triple-doubles, a 22 points-11 rebounds-11 steals v. Shasta and a 14 points-12 assists-10 steals performance v. Laney. She just missed another triple-double (one short on steals) in a Big 8 Conference win over Folsom Lake.

Moore also three times reached 30 points in a game, including 39 in a triumph over LA Valley. Moore leads the state in steals at 6.9 per game, her 8.1 assists average is second in helpers, and her 23.5 points average places her third in the state in offense. Moore has also led Sierra to a current No. 2 state ranking as one of only two schools remaining with undefeated records into January. She transferred to Sierra from Central Arizona College. Moore is a product of Stockton’s Weston Ranch High. She plays under the leadership of Sierra head coach Brandie Murrish.

DECEMBER MALE ATHLETE OF THE MONTH
Dylan Martinez/So/Wrestling/Fresno City College
Martinez won the state title in the 149-pound weight division as a repeat champion in helping Fresno capture its second consecutive CCCAA State team wrestling crown in December. Martinez was voted the Outstanding Wrestler of the state meet. He pinned Santa Rosa’s Blake Boswell at 3:44 for the finals triumph. Martinez also defeated Boswell at the NorCal Championships earlier in December. The No. 1 ranked Martinez dominated his division, pinning his opponents in the quarterfinals, semis, and finals. Martinez was part of the Rams historic run in winning its CCC record 15th overall state team championship in the sport. Martinez attended Clovis High. He wrestled under the direction of FCC head coach Paul Keysaw.

 

Honorable Mentions-Women
Rebecca Islas/So/Basketball/Los Angeles Valley College
The 5-foot-11 guard-forward Islas averaged 23.8 points and 11.6 rebounds a game in 11 games as a busy player in the month of December. Islas scored a remarkable 48 points and played 44 minutes in an 89-84 overtime loss to state power East LA. On Dec. 10, she lit up the scoreboard for 39 points (and grabbed 15 rebounds) as LAVC upset LA Trade Tech in overtime, 100-98. She made 17 of her 18 baskets the old-fashioned way from inside the circle. Islas also scored 30 v. defending state champ Mt. San Antonio. Six times she had double-doubles. She leads the state in scoring at a 24.6 points average as LA Valley is No. 11-rated in SoCal. Islas is from Boyle Heights and attended La Salle High.

Serena Rendon/Fr/Basketball/Cerritos College
The 5-8 Rendon had an outstanding month as she averaged 19.9 points, 5 rebounds, shot 44 percent from the field, 40 percent from 3-point range and 83 percent from the free throw line. In nine games played, Rendon posted five 20-point games, including the last four of the month. She was named All-Tournament of the Coast Christmas Classic and Fullerton Tournament, with the latter seeing her average 26.7 points a game. Rendon put up 30 points in the tournament finals against Mt. San Antonio at Fullerton, which included going 7-of-8 from 3-point range. Rendon is from Carson High.

Honorable Mentions-Men
Montre Bonner/So/Football/Fullerton College
A 6-foot-2, 250-pound defensive end, Bonner earned a spot of the All-American team after helping Fullerton win its second straight CCCAA State Championship football title on Dec. 9 against College of San Mateo. Bonner made two key sacks along with five tackles that helped the Hornets edge the Bulldogs, 16-12. Bonner ended the season as the co-leader for most sacks in the state with 14. In his two-year career as a Hornet, Montre goes down as one of the greatest community college sack artists with 25. Bonner attended South County High in Lorton, Virginia. 

Jakari McClain/So/Basketball/Oxnard College
A 6-foot-4 sharp-shooting guard, McClain leads the state in men’s basketball scoring at 33.1 points a game. In December, McClain scored 33 points, including draining seven 3-pointers in a loss to Rio Hondo. He helped the Condors snap the team’s 7-game losing streak to start the season by making a last-second layup for an 86-85 win over Porterville. The basket capped a 44-point game for McClain, who was 16-for-21 from the field (77 percent), 6-for-8 on treys and perfect on six free throws. He made 16 of 25 shots from beyond the 3-point circle (64 percent) in three December contests. McClain is from Clovis West High in Fresno.