P2P SDS Boys Basketball Honors
Foothills Christian standout Jaylen Hands is the Prep2Prep SDS Player of the Year.

ALL-SAN DIEGO SECTION

Player of the Year
JAYLEN HANDS, FOOTHILLS CHRISTIAN


By NICK SHOOK
Prep2Prep

With a signed letter of intent to attend and play for UCLA, Foothills Christian’s Jaylen Hands is the most notable name to come from the San Diego Section in 2016-17, but the section named Taeshon Cherry the Player of the Year after the 6-foot-9 junior led the Saints to the San Diego Section Open Division title in a three-point win over Torrey Pines. Cherry averaged over 20 points and 10 rebounds in 2016-17, and has another year of high school to look forward to, as he’s only a junior.

Hands, meanwhile, is off to Westwood after registering just one season at Foothills Christian. Hands’ Knights fell to Cherry’s Saints in the San Diego Section Open Division semifinals, but the guard was the section’s leading scorer at 29.2 points per game, shooting 52 percent from the field and 40 percent from behind the arc. Hands took it a step further, scoring 14 points in the McDonald’s All-American Game, in which he was teammates with fellow first-teamer Brandon McCoy.


Coach of the Year
CHAD BICKLEY, SANTA FE CHRISTIAN


Chad Bickley is the Prep2Prep SDS Coach of the Year.

By ERIC HE
Prep2Prep

He led a basketball team in a school with an enrollment of 400 students to its first CIF Title since 2006, and he did so with a roster consisting of no Division I scholarship players. For leading Santa Fe Christian to a turnaround season, Chad Bickley is Prep2Prep’s San Diego Section Coach of the Year.

“It was unbelievable,” Bickley told Prep2Prep. “A dream season.”

After going 11-19 last season, the Eagles went 21-11, overcoming a six-game losing streak to roll through the San Diego Section CIF playoffs and even advancing a round in the Division III CIF State playoffs, beating Vista Murrieta in the first round.

Bickley credited his players for buying into the team’s vision to propel the K-12 school to a section title.

“We don’t get a lot of kids who come to our school from the outside,” he said. “We don’t get that. We had a vision, a goal to just compete.”

Santa Fe Christian battled through a six-game losing streak late in the year, all of which were close losses.

“The fact that we knew we were playing the top teams in San Diego and we were right there,” said Bickley, who noted his team had one of the toughest schedules in the section. “Through that whole process, we came closer together and we really focused on the little details.”

And they did, winning five of their last six games to enter the playoffs hot. For a team lacking in standout talent, Bickley said it was all about players committing to the team.

“It says a lot about team, a lot about guys buying into their role,” he said. “It was amazing to watch, especially down the stretch. Everybody did their job.”


FIRST TEAM ALL-SDS

Jaylen Hands, Foothills Christian
Position: Guard
Year: Senior

Hands made the most of his lone season at Foothills Christian in the statistics, even if the hardware didn’t come with it.


JJ Overton, Rancho Bernardo
Position: Guard
Year: Senior

Overton led a two-year turnaround at Rancho Bernardo, when the team improved from 16-13 in 2014-15 to 21-9 in 2015-16, and 21-6 in the regular season in 2016-17, good for a Palomar League title, their first since 2004.

Though the Broncos’ season ended early in an upset loss to Westview, Overton heads to college with his head high after a season the Broncos’ faithful won’t soon forget.



Taeshon Cherry, St. Augustine
Position: Forward
Year: Junior

Cherry took home the title with his St. Augustine Saints, earning the top honors handed out by the San Diego Section after scoring 13 points, grabbing 11 rebounds and blocking six shots in the section’s Open Division title game.



Robby Robinson, Kearny
Position: Forward
Year: Senior

Robinson’s Kearny Komets had a rough season, going 14-13 in the regular season and losing in the first round of the section’s Division I playoffs, but his individual performance during the season merited selection to the section’s first team.



Brandon McCoy, Cathedral Catholic
Position: Forward
Year: Senior

McCoy’s late development, having not played basketball until the eighth grade, continued as he finished high school, even if he was one of a few bright spots during a dim season. He was named a McDonald's All-American.


SECOND TEAM ALL-SDS

Taurus Samuels, Vista
Position: Guard
Year: Junior

Samuels led Vista on a 10-game win streak that ended in a loss to Torrey Pines in the Open Division playoffs, but he had his highlights before the defeat. Samuels scored 19 points in the win over Mission Hills in the tournament’s quarterfinals, and has another season to look forward to before graduation.


Otto Taylor, St. Augustine
Position: Guard
Year: Senior

Taylor was an integral part of a St. Augustine team that won the Open Division section title before falling to Mater Dei in the state tournament. Taylor went 105-24 in four years at St. Augustine under head coach Mike Haupt, including a 45-3 mark in the Western League. The Saints upset Sierra Canyon, which featured Marvin Bagley III and Cody Riley, in the state playoffs before the loss to Mater Dei.


Miles Norris, Helix
Position: Forward
Year: Junior

Norris is garnering all of the attention on the national scene, attracting scholarship offers from a number of programs, including UCLA, St. John’s, Arizona, Washington, Oregon and USC, among others. The 6-foot-9 forward is the third-ranked power forward in California according to Scout, and has another season left to play at Helix before graduating.



Trey Anderson, Mater Dei Catholic
Position: Forward
Year: Junior

Anderson was at the front of a Mater Dei Catholic team that finished 23-6 and came a loss to Foothills Christian shy of the section’s Open Division semifinals. Anderson averaged 18.9 points and seven rebounds per game for the Crusaders in 2016-17.



Jake Gilliam, Torrey Pines
Position: Forward
Year: Senior

Gilliam has been lauded by his coach for having great hands and footwork and being the leader of the Falcons, despite his going overlooked on the major basketball scene. No matter for the forward, who scored 25 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in an Under Armour Holiday Classic win over Los Angeles power Fairfax.

Lions coach Steve Baik told the San Diego Union-Tribune: “Are (college recruiters) nuts? That kid can play. He can help someone.”

Help he did for Torrey Pines, which finished 28-5, with their season-ending losses coming against eventual champion St. Augustine in the San Diego Section playoffs, and to state champion Bishop Montgomery. Gilliam recently announced on Twitter that he has accepted a preferred walk-on spot at the University of San Diego.


THIRD TEAM ALL-SDS

Michael Diaz, Orange Glen
Position: Guard
Year: Senior

Diaz averaged 16.9 points, 6 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 2.3 steals per game for Orange Glen, which finished as the Division II runners-up after losing to Helix in the final.


Owen Aschieris, Santa Fe Christian
Position: Guard
Year: Senior

Aschieris was part of a Santa Fe Christian team that won the CIF Division 1 title over Lincoln. The guard averaged 22 points per game and had a season-high of 41 points during a memorable season in which the Eagles won their first state championship since 2006.



Richard Polanco, Army-Navy
Position: Forward
Year: Senior

Polanco averaged 26.6 points and 16 rebounds per game for Army-Navy, which came just three points shy of upsetting Kearny in the section’s Division I playoffs.



Reed Farley, La Jolla
Position: Forward
Year: Senior

Farley tore his ACL in January and missed the playoffs, but he will be playing at Harvard next season.



Warren Washington, Mission Hills
Position: Forward
Year: Junior

The 6-11 junior has already received offers from several schools including UC Santa Barbara.



HONORABLE MENTION:

BRAWLEY: Adalberto Lopez
CALVIN CHRISTIAN: Joshua Bakker
CHRISTIAN: Nashom Carter
LA JOLLA COUNTRY DAY: Ryan Langborg
MISSION BAY: Rejean Ellis
O'FARRELL: Jordan Gaines
MONTGOMERY: Timothy Crawford
PALO VERDE VALLEY: Terry Daniels
PATRICK HENRY: Christian Choice
RAMONA: Blake Seits
STEELE CANYON: Gage Sanders
TORREY PINES: Ethan Esposito
TRI-CITY CHRISTIAN: Stephen Sedlock
VISTA: Jordan Hilstock