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Player of the Week : Camarena Comes Through in Clutch for Brea

September 25, 1985|JOHN PENNER

Entering last Saturday night's game against Walnut High School, Brea-Olinda was in dire need of a leader. The Wildcats started the game with eight starters out because of injuries or disciplinary reasons.

But Brea's Fred Camarena, one of the team's tri-captains still playing, accepted the dilemma. He has a special way of handling difficult situations, and this was an unusual circumstance.

Camarena, a senior free safety, intercepted three passes, including two within the final four minutes, to help secure Brea's 21-16 win. For his performance, he has been named The Times' Player of the Week.

"I like pressure situations," Camarena said. "I've always liked them the most. That's when it's the most fun for me."

Bill Brown, Wildcat coach, said that Camarena always excels in the clutch.

"Last year, he won several ballgames for us, just by making the big play," Brown said. "We were only 5-5, but he made a tremendous contribution."

Camarena has played on the varsity for three years, and during that span has played nearly every skill position.

As a sophomore, he was the backup quarterback, and saw considerable action. He still is the Wildcats' No. 2 quarterback, but since then he also has played tailback, all the receiver positions, every spot in the secondary, and is the team's punt returner and holder on kicks. In 1984, he was named to the All-Orange League second team as a running back.

"We originally figured he'd be our quarterback," Brown said. "But since Eric Oden has continued to improve, we let Freddie do all those other things."

Camarena is such a versatile athlete, in fact, that this will probably be his last season of football. He has started at shortstop for the past two years, and thinks he has a better chance at succeeding in baseball in college. He was second team All-Orange League as a sophomore, and was a first team selection last season with a .391 batting average.

But for now, Camarena is enjoying his senior season as a football player. And so is Brown.

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