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Brazilian Student Getting the Royal Treatment

March 23, 2000|MIKE BRESNAHAN

Sanderson Bogea often catches himself scanning the Royal High campus.

He sees kids with dyed hair, wearing baggy jeans and singing praises to the rock group Blink 182. That's when he realizes he's not in Brazil anymore.

Bogea, a foreign-exchange student from Sao Felix Do Araguaia, population 12,000, is attending Royal for a year to learn English. He'll use it to help translate for American physicians who travel to Brazil.

Bogea, whose native language is Portuguese, was brought to the U.S. by the Rotary Club of Simi Valley, which sponsors a health-care program for the Karaja Indians, who live 30 minutes downstream from Bogea in Brazil.

Bogea knew little more than "hello" when he moved here last August, but he has learned quickly. Within a year or two, he hopes to be translating for American doctors.

When he's not studying the difference between past and present participles, Bogea, a 5-foot-9 senior, plays on the Royal boys' volleyball team.

Bogea never played organized sports in Brazil and had trouble adjusting to the concept. His lack of English was also a problem, at first.

"He'd look at me like he understood and he'd nod his head," Coach Bob Ferguson said. "But he just didn't understand, especially things about hustling and working hard. He was never disrespectful, he just didn't comprehend."

The language barrier was strong enough that Bogea was tossed out of practice for failing to run sprints. He had pulled a muscle in his leg but could not communicate it properly to Ferguson, who assumed Bogea was loafing. He was asked to leave the gym.

Ferguson talked with Bogea about the incident and realized the breakdown in communication.

"Once we understood what was going on, we could explain things to him a little better," Ferguson said. "We went over things a little more slowly. He began to understand the hustle and drive that we demand from our kids."

Bogea, a defensive specialist for the Highlanders, has become more comfortable as his English has improved.

"I've learned a lot of culture," he said. "I've learned a lot of English."

He does, however, miss home.

Said Bogea: "I like small cities."


Grant might be able to block out its recent past.

Thanks to 6-4 middle blockers Krishna Evans and Michael Charleston, the Lancers might avoid the problem of the previous two seasons . . . a first-round exit in the City playoffs.

Charleston and Evans are parlaying basketball experience into volleyball success. Charleston, a junior, averaged 11.3 points and Evans, a senior, averaged 8.5 rebounds for the basketball team.

They're a formidable threat on the volleyball court, too.

"I've never had a duo like that," said fifth-year Coach Howard Cahn. "They're in shape and they're used to competition. And they're nice kids on top of it."

Evans played volleyball last season, but Cahn worked hard to get Charleston to try out. It paid off.

"I begged him to play last year, but he wasn't ready," said Cahn, who noted Charleston's win-at-all-costs attitude. "He hates to lose. He's a very tough competitor."


The balance of power has shifted in the Mission League.

Chaminade, a perennial contender for last place, is challenging Loyola for first place.

Seniors Paul Jocas and Adam Hickerson have propelled the Eagles (7-0, 3-0), who are ranked No. 2 in the Southern Section Division III poll.

The high point for Chaminade was a four-game victory over longtime power Harvard-Westlake.

"It was a real big thing for us," Chaminade Coach Eric Dick said. "Our guys were extremely pumped up about it. We're just looking to keep going."

Chaminade has an important match Friday night at Loyola, the defending league champion.


Valencia won its second tournament title, defeating Crescenta Valley, 15-10, in the final of the Saugus tournament on Saturday.

Chris Haigh was selected most valuable player for the Vikings, who defeated Poly in the semifinals, 15-7.

Valencia (2-1) also won the Ventura tournament.


Volleyball Top 10

Rankings of regional boys' teams


RK LW School (League) Rec. 1 1 Royal (Marmonte) 7-0 2 2 Highland (Golden) 3-0 3 3 Taft (West Valley) 5-0 4 5 Simi Valley (Marmonte) 6-0 5 6 Canyon (Foothill) 2-2 6 7 Quartz Hill (Golden) 3-1 7 NR Chaminade (Mission) 7-0 8 8 Alemany (Mission) 6-1 9 9 Village Christian (Alpha) 9-0 10 4 Valencia (Foothill) 2-1


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