Sammy Arshadi
Sammy Arshadi, left, and Ethan Parrish are the leaders on the Dos Pueblos water polo team. (Barry Punzal / Noozhawk photo)

The first Santa Barbara Athletic Round Table press luncheon of the 2019-20 school year turned into a day of remembrance on Monday at Harry’s Plaza Cafe

New SBART president Ken Newendorp talked about the impact and tremendous support the late Cliff Purcell and Dr. Frank Gamberdella brought to the local sports community.

Three of Dr. Gamberdella’s children, Paul, Marc and Cara, served as SBART presidents, and he was a regular attendee at local games. 

Purcell, who built San Marcos into a CIF power in boys golf, received a tribute from Kevin McTague and presented the Round Table a donation of $2,500 in the memory of Purcell.

The donation came from the Delta Tau Delta fraternity at UCSB. Purcell was a member during his UCSB days in the late 1950s and later became its alumni advisor.  McTague met Purcell in 1980, and Purcell mentored him and other members on how to manage the assets for the undergraduate fraternity.

“There are parallels of what he did in sports and guiding the fraternity,” McTague said. “We felt it was really important to reach out and honor him with respect to his designated areas of interest, which included the Santa Barbara Athletic Round Table.”

Purcell’s wife, Jan, and daughter, Jeanie, were in attendance for the tribute. Jan was wearing a Delta bracelet from a formal she and Cliff attended 52 years ago.

Santa Barbara High football coach J.T. Stone paid homage to Bob Lovelace, the former owner of Goleta Sports, a sporting goods store he ran for 32 years.

“I can’t tell how big he was in this community,” Stone said. “He’s dear in my heart and to a lot of guys in this room.”

Newendorp and several coaches shared memories of coming to the press luncheon as athletes.  Newendorp was a San Marcos athlete and coach and a coach at SBCC. Now he’s the president of the all-volunteer organization’s president.

“I’ve come full circle,” he said.

The coaches’ reports featured football, boys water polo and girls volleyball.

San Marcos Water Polo

Coach Peera Sukavivatanachai on senior Dominic Marchetti: “It’s his fourth year in the program. We’re hoping for him to bring that wealth of knowledge from all his experience.”

On sophomore Hank Jessup: “He’s super coachable, easy to talk to and takes adjustments well.”

Santa Barbara Water Polo

Coach Mark Walsh on senior Chase Raisin: “He gets the tough matchups every single game. On offense, he carries a lot of our load. He’s one of our leading scorers. He kind of does everything for us. He does it in the classroom as well. He’s talking to some Ivy League schools for next year.”

Bryan Snyder

Bryan Snyder, a former UCSB player, returns to town to coach the Dos Pueblos boys water polo team. (Barry Punzal / Noozhawk photo)

On senior goalie Hunter Brownell: “He’s working on his Eagle Scout Badge. Every day I talk to him I get more impressed by all the things he does. That doesn’t include the millions of hours he gives to water polo and the team. We’re lucky to have him.”

Dos Pueblos Water Polo

First-year coach Bryan Snyder on senior captain Ethan Parrish: “He’s been phenomenal thus far leading the guys through warmups and weight sessions. We get as motivated as he wants to get us. He’s phenomenal in the classroom as well. He’s looking to follow in his brother’s footsteps to Stanford next year.”

On junior Sammy Arshadi; “Another phenomenal talent in the water. He is looking to step up and take on more of a leadership role this year. He’s one of the guys where we’ll go as far as his leadership will take us.”

Providence Girls Volleyball

Coach Caitlin Racich on sophomores Liza Coffin and Kaitlyn Tang: “These two definitely showed a lot of leadership on the court (in a sweep against Valley Christian Academy).”

San Marcos Football

Coach Jason Fowle on senior receiver Josh Brown: “He’s a very exciting player for us, very versatile. Don’t let the surfer boy demeanor, laid-back attitude fool you, he’s a very hard worker. He and (quarterback) Ben (Partee) worked tirelessly over the summer to perfect their timing. We going to find more ways to manufacture touches for him in every game.”

On senior running back Henry Herrera: “He’s really turned into a go-to player for us. He’s a real smooth player. Sometimes when you watch him in practice you feel like he’s not going hard, but it’s just how smooth he is. And it came out on game night for us. He turned out some tough rushing yards against a defense that was basically selling out to stop the run.”

On Noah Duenas, junior safety: “He matured a lot when he competed in wrestling during the offseason. He worked his way into a starting role for us at safety and he hasn’t disappointed. We’re really looking for him to embrace that enforcer-type role for us in the secondary.”

Bishop Diego Football

Athletic Director Mike Cano, speaking for coach Tom Crawford, on senior running back Adrian Soracco: “We’re expecting great things out of Adrian this year on his leadership and his toughness. Adrian has been a four-year starter for us and we’re looking for a great year from him.”

On junior quarterback Buddy Melgoza: “He sat out all of last season with an injury. He not only showed he had great footwork in throwing the ball but also ran. He threw for two touchdowns and ran for the other, so he’s off to a good start. We expect big things out of him also.”

Santa Barbara High Football

Coach J.T. Stone on senior defensive end Joshua Rosales: “We’ve been waiting for Joshua to have a breakout season and I think this is it. I told him how much he means to this program. His potential is great. We moved him to defensive end from nose guard, so we’re happy where he’s at and we’re expecting a lot from Joshua this year.”

On junior quarterback Deacon Hill: “We want to score more points, that’s our philosophy. I’m trying to get these kids to understand if we’re trying to go a long way, we have to develop a mentality and Deacon is the start of that. He gets everybody on our team going, he’s the energy, he’s the spark. He played really well last year and we’re going to look for him to continue to do that for our football team.”

Carpinteria Football

First-year coach Mario Robinson on senior Jacob Macias: “Jacob, from day one, responded very well (to the changes in the program) and took the leadership reins. He’s a two-way player — outside linebacker and running back — and just does an awesome job.”

Dos Pueblos Football

Athletic Director Dan Feldhaus, speaking for coach Doug Caines on senior receiver/cornerback Baylor Huyck: “Baylor is an interesting blend of speed and size. He blew the top off the (Rio Mesa) defense several times and he was a lockdown cornerback.”

On linebacker Daniel Santa Cruz: “He had one interception, one forced fumble and eight tackles His grit and determination are unrelenting. His work ethic and commitment to his team have helped fortify a young defense. This junior is only going to get better and better as the season goes on.”

Noozhawk Sports Editor Barry Punzal can be reached at Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

— Noozhawk sports editor Barry Punzal can be reached at Follow Noozhawk Sports on Twitter: @NoozhawkSports. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.