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Individual, team success for Guards

Bell-Jeff athletes made their marks with impressive efforts, while the school's basketball, girls' volleyball and softball squads had their share of accomplishments.

July 30, 2011|By Jeff Tully,
(File photo )

This is the first in a four-part series looking back on the sports accomplishments of the four local high schools over the past school year. This installment is Bellarmine-Jefferson High:

There were some impressive individual performances turned in this past school year by Guards athletes. Standout efforts in football, girls' and boys' basketball, girls' volleyball, baseball and softball highlighted the school's top efforts.

But more than just individual accolades, there was also a group of Bell-Jeff teams which enjoyed their share of success during the 2010-11 campaign. One of those squads, the softball team, even advanced to a CIF Southern Section championship contest.

When it came to outstanding individual contributions, however, no one stood out more than senior Micah Shirley. Along with being a standout in football at multiple positions, he was also a big force on the basketball court for the Guards.

In football as a running back, Shirley rushed for a Santa Fe league-best 1,210 yards and seven touchdowns, averaging more than 10 yards a carry. As a receiver, he had 24 receptions for 402 yards and eight touchdowns. As a quarterback in the wildcat offense, Shirley passed for 200 yards and a touchdown. And, while leading the league in scoring, he threw just one interception and had just one fumble.


A standout as well on the defensive end, Shirley totaled 122 tackles, a sack, three fumble recoveries and four interceptions as a defensive back.

For his efforts, Shirley made the All-CIF Northeast Division first team as a defensive back.

Unfortunately for Bell-Jeff (2-8), it finished last in the five-team Santa Fe League. Only Shirley and senior lineman Eric Lopez made the all-league first team. Senior wide receiver-cornerback Kevin Yuenyongsakul was a second-team choice.

It was a different story in basketball. Behind the athletic senior, the Guards put together a winning campaign that included a Santa Fe League championship. It was Bell-Jeff's first league title in 13 years.

With that success, it's was not surprising that Bell-Jeff had five athletes who were honored on the all-league list. Leading the way was Shirley, who earned Santa Fe League Player of the Year honors.

Shirley averaged 16.6 points a game and scored 24 in a game against St. Genevieve on Feb. 10 to help the Guards secure the league crown.

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