After great seasons seen from the Lassen College winter and spring sports, the LCC athletic department hosted a banquet to honor and shed light on some of the most outstanding athletes on the field, court and arena.
Starting with the Lady Cougar basketball team, head coach Dorinda Shaffer shed light on the many challenges the team faced throughout the season. Between academic complications and injuries, the Lady Cougar team only had two team members from the original squad by the end of the season: Victoria Moore and Hailee Simpson.
Simpson and Carissa Shaffer were named All-Conference Freshman, and Simpson received honorable mention for the All-Conference team. Simpson was also the winner of the Marlon Hall Jr. Memorial Award.
Next in the spotlight was women’s rodeo. Head coach Suzanne Williams commented that this year’s team truly stuck together and supported one another at each event.
Tea Greene finished in the top 10 of the region for barrel racing. Riley Sappington finished in the top 10 of the region in breakaway roping.
Chelsey Bushnell earned second in the region for breakaway roping and will be representing Lassen College at the upcoming national competition held from June 8 to June 19.
“I’m proud of you all. You did wonderful. We had some people on the team who had never rodeoed before, and we all finished successful,” said Suzanne Williams.
The softball team was next to be honored. Coach Glenn Yonan reflected on the team’s season and how each member of the team supported one another like family.
Alyssa Jones was named in the All-Academic Team, Garyn Harlan and Taylor Knecht both earned Second Team All-Conference and Aleah Dela Cruz was named to the First Team All-Conference.
Mia Torres was named to the First Team All-Conference, and she was also voted Player of the Year for the Golden Valley Conference. The latter award allowed Torres to be named to the All-State California Team.
Brittany Chamberlain won the Marlon Hall Jr. Memorial Award for the Cougar softball team. Yonan said Chamberlain was honored with the award for her constant good attitude and her great improvement in skill and focus from the start of the conference.
For men’s rodeo, coach Dan Williams brought attention to the many achievements the team had throughout the season.
Adam Kammerer and Wyatt Spencer each finished the season in the top 10 of the region.
Dan Williams also gave a shout out to William MacDonald for his leadership seen during his sophomore year at Lassen.
Blaine Pinochi was the recipient of the Marlon Hall Jr. Memorial Award for the men’s rodeo team.
Coach Will Freedman took the stage for the men’s basketball team and immediately brought to everyone’s attention just how great of an improvement the program has gone through in the past year. With more baskets, better defense and better chemistry in the team overall, the men completely flipped the expectations of each coach in the conference.
Freedman said, “One of my highlights of this group was I got my first ever technical because the bench wouldn’t stop cheering for their team. I’ve never seen it happen before, but I told them all year, I challenged them that I wanted a bench-warning error because we are that enthused. Guys were jumping up and down, acting like fools, just because they love their teammates. That’s the one thing they actually listened to all year because they got me a technical. I appreciate that.”
Colby Johnson was named First Team All-Conferene. Danny Spinuzza was also named All-Conference.
Bruno Castillo was named to the All-Defensive Team.
Damien Trujillo earned Honorable Mention for the Golden Valley All-Conference Team. Freedman said, “He ended up being our leading scorer, he came of the bench for most of the games and he proved to me and his teammates that he was willing to sacrifice his own success for the team.”
The Marlon Hall Jr. Memorial Award was granted to Johnson for the Cougar men’s basketball team.
The final team to be honored was the baseball team. Coach Frank Avilla commented on the great adversity the men faced throughout the season.
With the weather wreaking havoc for travel and flooding the Susanville Memorial Park field three times, the odds were stacked against the team, but the Cougars still managed to make their way into playoffs for the first time in nine years, according to Avilla.
“I’m more proud of this group than any group I’ve had because all of you know more than anything that the strength of our team is chemistry. All of you guys were a joy to be around,” said Avilla.
Quinton Smith, Zachary Schmidt and Adam Frandsen were named to the All-Academic Team.
Gehrig Parks, Raymond Kerr, McClain O’Connor, and Daniel Perry earned spots in the First Team All-Conference.
Frandsen, Ryan Thomasy and Nathan Hedberg all earned spots in the Second Team All-Conference.
Eric Carlson earned the Golden Valley Conference MVP title. With his MVP title, Carlson earned a spot on the All-American Team.
In addition, Schmidt was awarded the Marlon Hall Jr. Memorial Award for the Cougar baseball team.
The winter and spring Cougar athletes did their part to shine a light on the Lassen College Athletic Department, so the department returned the favor with the honors presented at this year’s spring banquet.