Three Sheldon boys basketball players accept college scholarships

Published: Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 5C
Last Modified: Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012 - 3:44 pm

Hours before attending a ceremony to sign letters of intent in the Sheldon High School library Wednesday night, five Huskies basketball players plopped down onto a couch in the athletic lounge.

Each smiled, then exhaled, as if this were the calm before the storm.

A season filled with great expectations started with three seniors accepting scholarships and two other starters still in the college recruiting mix. Last season's Bee Player of the Year D'Erryl Williams, a 6-foot-2 point guard, and fellow Bee first-team All-Metro teammate Dakarai Allen, a 6-6 swingman, are headed to San Diego State, where the Aztecs in recent years have moved up in the rankings and have been fixtures in the NCAA Tournament.

Darin Johnson, a 6-3 combo player, is headed to Washington. Johnson grew up playing on youth and AAU teams alongside Williams and Allen, even while attending Franklin High, from where he transferred last spring.

Then there are Sheldon's other seniors, Ryan Manning and Armani Hampton. Manning, a 6-6 wing with good three-point range, said he hopes to sign a scholarship deal in the coming months. Hampton, a 6-3 combo guard, may miss this season after re-injuring his surgically repaired knee that kept him out of last year's run to the state championship game.

Not since Jesuit in the early 1990s has a regional team had so much talent. Sheldon reached the state Division I final last season, falling to national power Mater Dei of Santa Ana.

The Sac-Joaquin Section has not won a D-I large-school state title.

"This is an easy group to coach when they do everything right – students, players, good kids," Sheldon coach Joey Rollings said.

Williams and Allen said San Diego State is a good fit, especially after being given a tour of the area and the beaches by current Aztecs players they know well – Chase Tapley of Sacramento High and Xavier Thames of Pleasant Grove.

"It just felt right," Allen said.

Each player said he worked just as hard in the classroom as he did on the court to achieve his scholarship. Without qualifying transcripts, there is no chance to land a scholarship.

"In my household, we always did homework first – school was the most important thing," Williams said.

Johnson agreed, adding, "We wouldn't be going to college without good grades."

Though Allen proudly wears his San Diego State cap, flat brim and all, he said he doesn't talk much about his scholarship.

"We don't want people to think we're gloating," he said. "But it does feel good."

Added Rollings, their coach: "They should be proud. It's hard to get a scholarship."

WHERE THEY'RE GOING

Area high school athletes who confirmed their NCAA letter-of-intent signings:

AthleteSportSchoolCollege
Josh AdamsBaseballPleasant GroveUC Santa Barbara
Ali AguilarSoftballCasa RobleWashington
Dakarai AllenBasketballSheldonSan Diego State
Haley AndersonBasketballOak RidgeUC San Diego
Michal AndreattaWater poloRosevilleVirginia Military Institute
Zach AukesBaseballPioneerOregon
Brett BautistaBaseballGranite BaySan Jose State
Meagan BennettLacrosseSt. FrancisSt. Mary's
Lauren BertoySoftballOak RidgeStanford
Tyler BlakeBaseballFranklinSacramento State
Jimmy BorasBaseballJesuitPacific
De'Von BoydBasketballSacramentoChaminade-Hawaii
Courtney BrignacBasketballEl CaminoChico State
Lauren BryanLacrosseSt. FrancisFresno State
Morgan CarterSoftballPleasant GroveUtah State
Kaitlyn CozensWater poloSt. FrancisMichigan
Robert DaughertyBaseballPioneerWashington
Alec De WattevilleBaseballOak RidgeSan Jose State
Maggie DryschEquestrianOak RidgeOklahoma State
Allyson FellowsSwimmingWoodcreekSan Jose State
Kayla FieldsSoftballRosevilleSouth Dakota State
Thomas GalartBaseballPioneerNevada
Stephanie GeyerBasketballDel OroArmy
Jordan GotroDivingOak RidgeSouth Carolina
Allie GreenBasketballSacramentoPepperdine
Andre GregoryBaseballJesuitSacramento State
Shelbie HoldenDivingBella VistaFresno State
Dejza JamesBasketballPleasant GroveArizona
Darin JohnsonBasketballSheldonWashington
Lynette JohnsonBasketballKennedyUtah State
Whitney JorgensenSwimmingRosevilleBoise State
Katie KingBasketballRiver CityCSU Northridge
Aaron KnappBaseballGranite BayCal
Marisa KolokotronisWater PoloSt. FrancisBrown
Dylan KubickSwimmingOak RidgeUC Santa Barbara
Cypress LampeSwimmingOak RidgeUC San Diego
Hannah LisseraVolleyballSt. FrancisSeattle
Sarah MeltzRowingOak RidgeCreighton
Brandon MillsSwimmingOak RidgeArizona State
Amber MurraySoftballPleasant GroveEastern Kentucky
Demi MusesVolleyballCasa RobleNew Hampshire
Dom NunezBaseballElk GroveUCLA
Stephen NogosekBaseballWoodcreekOregon
Bailey O'MaraSoftballSt. FrancisPacific
Frankie OrlandoSoftballWoodcreekSan Diego State
Gabriella PalmeriVolleyballSt. FrancisPepperdine
Taryn RenowdenSoftballElk GroveLoyola Marymount
Megan RobersonBasketballDel CampoAir Force
Brianna RuizBasketballDel OroWashington
Sara ScarlettGolfWoodlandTexas
Jackie SchmaelingSoftballOak RidgeSt. Martin's
Hanna SchneiderWater PoloBella VistaUC San Diego
Maile SetoCrewSt. FrancisTulsa
Taylor ShillingburgDivingRocklinUNLV
Eric StuttevilleBasketballCasa RobleSacramento State
Keaton SubjeckWrestlingOak RidgeStanford
Ryan TellezBaseballElk GroveUSC
Kyndra Trevino-ScottVolleyballBella VistaHawaii-Hilo
Tori TrylovichTennisOak RidgeSacramento State
Dana VestmanVolleyballSt. FrancisMontana State
Casey WilliamsBasketballSacramentoFullerton State
D'Erryl WilliamsBasketballSheldonSan Diego State
Haley YorkRowingBella VistaUMass-Amherst
– Bill Paterson

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