PDPreps Insider: Analy’s Smith picks a college

Analy's Will Smith during the game held at Petaluma High School, Friday, November 7, 2014. (Crista Jeremiason / The Press Democrat)

Analy’s Will Smith during the game held at Petaluma High School, Friday, November 7, 2014. (Crista Jeremiason / The Press Democrat)

Analy quarterback Will Smith has signed a letter of intent to play at Kansas Wesleyan University, an NAIA school in Salina, Kan. Smith received a combination athletic and academic scholarship.

Smith was a two-time first-team All-Sonoma County League quarterback and last fall was named to the All-Empire first team. He passed for more than 3,000 yards in 2014 and set an SCL single-season record with 46 touchdown passes. In two seasons as the Tigers’ quarterback, he passed for 71 touchdowns and led the team to 23 victories.

Honors for SRJC players

The Redwood Empire was well-represented when the Big 8 announced its all-conference selections. Among the Santa Rosa JC players selected for first-team honors were relief pitcher Vijay Patel (Maria Carrillo) and first baseman Weston Bryan (Casa Grande). Catcher Ryan Haug (Rancho Cotate) was voted most valuable player.

“Patel pitched in 15 of our 21 conference games,” coach Damon Neidlinger said. “He finished with a 0.92 ERA. Bryan was fourth in the conference in RBIs and fourth in batting average with a .354.”

Calistoga coach leaving

Jacob Blakeley, who coached the Calistoga softball team to more than 100 wins in his eight-year tenure, is leaving the area to go back to college.

“I’ll be going to school in Monterey to get a teaching degree,” he said. “Then I’ll come back to Calistoga.”

Blakeley’s last game was a heartbreaker. The Wildcats lost by a run to St. Vincent in the second round of the NCS Division 5 playoff.

Summerfield opening

Summerfield Waldorf High School is looking for a new tennis coach. Anyone interested should contact: athletics@summerfieldwaldorf.org.

Thomsen to Chico

Former Petaluma pitcher and 2012-13 All-Empire large school softball player of the year Dana Thomsen has accepted a scholarship to continue her career at Chico State. Thomas has pitched the past two seasons for SRJC.

NBL scouting report

For an outsider’s perspective on NBL baseball this season, perhaps Pinole Valley coach Curtis Sandeford has the market cornered. His Spartans of the Tri County League went on the road to play a remarkable six NBL teams — Ukiah, Rancho Cotate, Cardinal Newman, Montgomery, Maria Carrillo and Casa Grande — and went 4-2.

The No. 12-seeded Spartans upset the fourth-seeded Pumas 5-3 in the first round of the NCS Division 2 playoffs, then defeated the fifth–seeded Gauchos 3-2 in 11 innings to advance to the semifinals.

Although NBL teams didn’t fare particularly well in the NCS, Sandeford had praise for the Redwood Empire.

“There is good baseball being played in this area,” Sandeford said.

See ya later

The 2014-15 school sports calendar comes to an end this weekend with the crowning of North Coast Section softball and baseball champions and the CIF state track and field championship in Clovis. With that also comes the close of another school year of the PD Preps page in The Press Democrat every Wednesday.

The sports and the PD Preps page will be back in action in a few short months.

Meantime, coaches and athletic directors are asked to forward coaching changes, with contact information please, and 2015-16 schedules to sports@pressdemocrat.com.

Phil Barber, Howard Senzell and Richard J. Marcus contributed to this report.