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Bishop named player of the year

Valencia High’s junior quarterback gets the Foothill League’s top prize; Vikings sweep the top fou

Posted: December 8, 2009 10:16 p.m.
Updated: December 9, 2009 4:30 a.m.
Vikings quarterback Alex Bishop earned the 2009 Player of the Year award for the Foothill League. Vikings quarterback Alex Bishop earned the 2009 Player of the Year award for the Foothill League.
Vikings quarterback Alex Bishop earned the 2009 Player of the Year award for the Foothill League.

After completing one of the most efficient seasons for a quarterback in state history, Valencia’s Alex Bishop has been named the Foothill League’s 2009 Player of the Year.

“That’s incredible. I don’t know, I’m speechless,” Bishop said Tuesday upon being given the news. “I just thought for sure it’d go to (Valencia running back) Steven (Manfro). He had such a great year. I’m surprised.”

Manfro, a junior, does receive a consolation prize, though, in being named Offensive Player of the Year.

The Foothill League champion Vikings made a clean sweep of the league’s top individual awards as senior defensive lineman Kevin Rush was named Defensive Player of the Year and senior Ryan Wermich was named Lineman of the Year.

Bishop completed 179-of-240 passes for a 74.6 percent completion percentage in 2009 — the third best mark in state history.

Above him are NFL quarterbacks Trent Edwards (78.1 percent) and Mark Sanchez (74.9 percent).

His 78.4 percent regular season mark (138-for-176) is the best in state history.

Bishop also established a school record with 36 touchdown passes.

He also passed for 3,416 yards with only seven interceptions (four coming in last Saturday’s season-ending loss to Moorpark) and ran for another 516 yards.

Bishop was correct in saying that his competition for player of the year came from Manfro.

The junior running back ran for 1,679 yards and collected another 752 in receiving yards.

He scored 33 touchdowns and even tossed a touchdown pass against Loyola on Oct. 10.

Manfro averaged 8.7 yards per rush and caught 41 passes.

“He had a great offseason and strived to be a playmaker,” said Valencia head coach Larry Muir of Manfro. “He’s just going to get better and better.”

Rush had 12 sacks on the season, scored a defensive touchdown and was one of the driving forces behind a Valencia defense that surrendered only 24 points in league play.

“I just thought inside he was unblockable,” Muir said of Rush. “He was consistent all year and drew double teams. If he was ever one on one, he had his way with people.”

Wermich was a vocal leader for Valencia and led the team in tackles and also had 12 sacks.

One of the more curious spots on the All-Foothill League team was Hart quarterback/kicker C.J. Reyes making the list as a first-team defender and being positioned at punter.

The Foothill League coaches choose the teams and sometimes to make room for other players, they list players at positions where they didn’t make their biggest impact.

That’s the case with Reyes, who was stellar at quarterback for the Indians in 2009.

Canyon freshman wide receiver Drew Wolitarsky made the first-team offense — a huge accomplishment for a player in his grade.



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