ATHLETES OF THE WINTER BREAK
Brittny Hummel, San Marcos Water Polo — Hummel is the undisputed leader of the Royals’ program, and she displayed it in the pool over over the Holidays by scoring three goals in a win against Long Beach Poly, five in a league win over Buena and three more against Bishop’s of San Diego. She’s also the team’s top defender. But coach Brian Roth said that her dedication to the team has been much more important. Hummel was invited to attend a friend’s 18th birthday at Disneyland for a few days last week, and approached Roth to see if she could miss a practice because of it. He left it in her hands, and sure enough she showed up at practice without an ounce of resentment.
“I really applaud her, and I think the fact that she won Athlete of the Week is really more of a result of the choices she’s made over the years… She made that choice because it went in line with her integrity and who she is as a person,” said Roth.
Tony Alfaro, Santa Barbara High Soccer — The Dons are at it again this year, shaking off a 1-3 start to stand at 11-3-3 with two tournament titles under their belt. Alfaro’s game-winning goal in the quarterfinal and overall stellar play were enough to garner MVP honors at the South Torrance Tournament, which is one of the oldest and most elite tourneys in the state.
Angel Blanco, Westmont Basketball — Blanco scored 18 points with six rebounds to lead the way against the nation’s 11th-ranked team, Westminister (UT). After that, she one-upped it with 27 points and eight boards in a win over Georgetown of Kentucky.
Preston Branson, Westmont Basketball — Coach John Moore called Branson the “most competitive” player he’s had in 23 years of coaching, and the competitor came through with a buzzer-beating lay-up followed by a 40-point outburst as the Warriors won the Tom Byron Classic.