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The Preps

Ending the Way That It All Started

June 18, 1987|Scott Howard-Cooper

The 1986-87 school year started with a list, the prep football rankings, so it's only fitting that it should end with a list, again likely to bring disagreement.

Here, then, is my ranking of the best multisport athletes during the last nine months in the City and Southern sections:


1. LeRon Ellis, Mater Dei--Outstanding agility for someone who is 6-feet 11-inches tall. Was the Southern Section 5-A basketball player of the year on the state Division I champion, led the water polo team in scoring and high jumped 6-8 in his only meet of the season.

2. Russell White, Encino Crespi. In the fall, the best football player in Southern California, a running back who was named Big Five Conference player of the year as a sophomore. In the spring, he finished second in the state in the triple jump.

3. A combined entry from Pasadena Muir. Quarterback Vince Phillips led the football team to the Coastal Conference championship and was named co-player of the year, and then hit .511 in baseball. Marcus Robertson ran track--fifth in the state in the 800 and ran on the 1,600 relay team that finished sixth--and was all-conference as a defensive back in football. Tony Crutchfield was all-state and all-conference at linebacker in football, and in the spring played baseball and ran track, winning the Pacific League long jump title with a very good 23-8.

4. Quincy Watts, Woodland Hills Taft--The best sprinter in the state, he won the 100 and 200 in the state meet at Sacramento. Also a good basketball player, though he missed practically all of last season with a foot injury. He started on the team as a sophomore.

5. Tommy Adams, Capistrano Valley--A junior, he has started on the baseball team since he was a freshman and batted .423 this season. And he did that while winning the South Coast League 100 and 200 in track and running a leg on the fastest 400-meter relay team in Orange County. In football, he averaged 6.1 yards a carry and 16.2 yards a reception.

6. J. R. Phillips, Bishop Amat--A strong-armed left-handed quarterback, he helped lead the Lancers to the Big Five quarterfinals and an 11-1 record, although he was overshadowed by running back Eric Bieniemy. Took a back seat to no one in baseball, in which he was 13-1 and led Bishop Amat to the 4-A quarterfinals.

7. Scott Davison, Redondo--Established a Southern Section single-season record with 58 runs batted in and had a 12-2 record as a pitcher. In his first year of football, he was an All-Pioneer League defensive back and a kicker.

8. Eric Crawford, Venice--A wide receiver-defensive back, he earned a football scholarship to Arizona State despite an injury-plagued season. Came back for baseball and hit .349 in the regular season and was drafted by the Chicago Cubs.

9. Craig Turley, Diamond Bar--Set several career and single-season state records for scoring in soccer. With far less publicity in baseball, he batted .462.

10. (tie) Ricky Ervins, Muir, and Calvin Holmes, Carson--Both very good, though small, running backs, Ervins an All-Coastal choice and Holmes All-City. Both also made the state final in the 100, in which Holmes finished second to Watts and Ervins, advancing further than most people expected, took eighth.

Honorable mention--Jim Bonds, Newhall Hart, football, baseball and basketball. Mitch Butler, North Hollywood Oakwood, basketball and track. Paul Richardson, L. A. University, football, basketball and track.

And finally, Peter Andersons of North Hollywood Harvard, who was All-Desert Mountain Conference in football, second-team All-Southern Section in volleyball and one of the top players on a nationally ranked club soccer team. He will attend Middlebury College in Vermont (enrollment: 1,900) and compete in football . . . and skiing.


1. Serina Strange, Indio--All-Southern Section in volleyball, All-Southern Section in basketball and a three-time qualifier for the state track meet in the long jump and triple jump.

2. Elaine Youngs, El Toro--All-Southern Section in basketball, All-Southern Section in volleyball. Just a junior, she will be one of the most watched athletes next year.

3. Ursula Lovely, Kennedy--Led the Southern Section in rebounding in basketball with 15.7 a game and averaged 26.4 points. Also a track and field competitor. Had potential in the high jump with a best of 5-11 as a sophomore, but never went that high again.

4. Lisa Gill, Mission Hills Alemany--All-Southern Section in soccer, also won the 2-A triple jump title and reached the state preliminaries. A good heptathlete.

5. Jill Johnson, Cerritos Gahr--One of the top volleyball players in the state, she will compete in the U.S. Olympic Festival this summer in North Carolina. Also good in the 100 and 300 low hurdles in track.

6. Kelli Moore, Los Alamitos--Went 167-1 in four-year Empire League career in tennis, led Orange County softball players in batting at .557 and set the school assist and scoring record in basketball. Averaged 16.3 points a game last season.

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