Guards Take Their Game To The Next Level!

June 11, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Burbank – As the memories of high school athletics slowly fade away for the majority of Bell-Jeff varsity seniors, four Bell-Jeff Guards will continue their careers at the college level.

Rishonda Napier, Jasmine Smith, Jocelyn Cervantes and Elijah Reed will depart to different parts of the US to display their skills for new and bigger crowds.

Rishonda Napier, graduated Summa Cum Laude in the top percentile of her class.

Over her four year career at Bell-Jeff, she captured 1st Team All-League, All-CIF, All-State and 2012 Daily News All Area Player of the Year. She was also a key part of the 2009 State Championship team that produced Margeaux Gupilan (currently running the hardwood floor at the University of Buffalo in New York. Rishonda was also nominated for the 2012 McDonalds All-American Team.

In her senior year, Rishonda averaged 21.7 points, 3.2 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 1.6 steals, while shooting 42 percent from 3-point range.

She had a career-high 34 points in a 65-54 quarterfinal win at Chaminade.

Rishonda will travel east to Southern Illinois University to play for the Salukis next season.

Jasmine Smith, was also a big part of that 2009 State Championship team with Rishonda and during her storied career at Bell-Jeff earned a slew of accolades as well, including, 1st Team All-League, All-CIf and Burbank Leader All-Area Honors.

Jasmine and Rishonda led their team to 4 straight League Titles and amassed a win total that will be hard to beat. During her senior year, Jasmine averaged, 16 points, 10 rebounds per game.

Jasmine also ran track and was a big part of was part of the CIF semi-final Volleyball team that featured our next standout player Jocelyn Cervantes and will join the Spartans at San Jose State in the fall.

Jocelyn Cervantes, held serve on a different court, but was equally as successful as her basketball counterparts. Her cool demeanor, paired with a vicious spike put fear in the hearts of volleyball players across the county.

A four year varsity starter, Jocelyn led the Lady Guards to consecutive league titles and was honored with All-League, All-CIF and All-Area titles. She also helped make school history when the girls volleyball team made it all the way to the CIF finals barley losing the championship to Upland Christian Academy in a tough match. She led the Guards back the the CIF quarter finals the following year before losing a close one to number one seeded Hemet High School.

Jocelyn finished her career at Bell-Jeff  as one of the best volleyball players in the schools history winning four straight league titles, posting a 66-25-2 record, advancing to the playoff quarterfinals twice, the semifinals once and the Division IV-A championship game in 2009.

Jocelyn will stay close to home and take her game to California State University Stanislaus in Turlock, California..

Elijah Reed, the only boy in this group, definitely made his presence known on campus. This future Senior Class President was the JV long jump league champion his freshman year, played a year of varsity football as a sophomore and varsity baseball his senior year.

But basketball was his true passion. Elijah was MVP of the JV basketball team as a freshman and went on to become a three year varsity starter.

Always the hardest worker on the floor, he would guard anyone and established himself as one of the top defenders in the Santa Fe league.

During his career at Bell-Jeff, Elijah earned 1st team All-League honors and helped the team win their first league championship in 12 years. In his senior year, he averaged 12 points, 3 assists, 2.5 steals and shot 75% from the free throw line earning team MVP honors.

Elijah was the 2012 Senior Class President and graduated Magna Cum Laude from Bellarmine-Jefferson High School with a 4.2 GPA his senior year. He was awarded the Science award as the top Chemistry student in his graduating class and named the Distinguished Male Athlete by the US Marine Corps.

Elijah will play for the Loggers at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma Washington next season.

Averie Alice Guzman – was another member from the Bell-Jeff team that won Southern Section and state championships in 2009. She averaged six points, five rebounds her senior year and earned 1st Team All-Legue honors. She will join the Leopards of La Verne University next year and her team mate Marilyn Flynn will take her game to Santa Monica JC.

Story by Eric “Rico” Reed

Acosta Ready For Her Shot!

June 2, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Burbank – Mia Acosta wasn’t part of Bell-Jeff’s run to the Southern Section Div. VII softball final last season, but she gained plenty of motivation from the Guards’ 7-6 loss to Pomona Catholic.

Acosta, a sophomore transfer from Birmingham, attended last year’s title game to support her friends on the Bell-Jeff roster, since they play offseason travel ball together with the So Cal Monsters.

With Acosta leading the way this year in the pitcher’s circle and at the plate, No. 2 Bell-Jeff (23-5-2) gets its rematch with top-seeded Pomona Catholic (25-7) at 3 p.m. today at Deanna Manning Stadium in Irvine.

“It feels really amazing being in a championship game. I really want to win it all for my team,” Acosta said. “I’m excited for the opportunity to be out there with my team.”

Bell-Jeff has outscored its postseason opponents 56-0, with Acosta (13-2) and Amanda Maalouf (10-1) overpowering hitters — allowing eight hits and striking out 34 — in preparation to match up with Pomona Catholic’s Amber Padilla (23-7), who also hasn’t allowed a run in the playoffs, with the Pacers scoring 103 runs in their four postseason victories.

“I think we’re prepared to play against anybody,” Acosta said. “I kind of know how it feels playing in a big game like this having been in (14-under nationals in 2010). I don’t just want to do it for me, I want to do it for my team. It’s not just me, it’s all of us put together.”

Daily News

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Rematch with Pomona Catholic for CIF title!

June 1, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

SAN PEDRO — It has been more than seven weeks since the Bellarmine-Jefferson High Read more