PASADENA - Women's volleyball superstar Mere Nagase of Feather River College and men's soccer defender Pedro Gomes of Fresno City College led their respective teams to state championships in being merited as the California Community College Sports Information Association December Women's and Men's Athletes of the Month.
Mere Nagase | Feather River College | Volleyball | Sophomore
An All-American First Team setter, Nagase was as advertised in leading Feather River to its first-ever state championship in women's volleyball Dec. 6-8 at Southwestern College. Nagase, the state tournament MVP, performed a triple-double with with 10 kills, 39 assists and 27 digs in the title match as the Golden Eagles upset previously undefeated Irvine Valley in five sets. Her quick sets and all-around play contributed in helping four of her teammates also reach double figures in kills. Mere (pronounced Mary) made precision sets on the final four points in a row to give Feather River a 5-set victory over Grossmont in the semifinals. Nagase, from San Leandro High near Oakland, ignited FRC to a 35-2 overall record and 10th straight Golden Valley Conference title.
Pedro Gomes | Fresno City College | Soccer | Sophomore
An amazing team defensive run during the playoffs and state tournament was paced by Gomes, a center-back, who earned co-MVP honors in helping Fresno City win its second state title in the last three years. Gomes, an international student from Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, was part of a Rams defensive streak that ended with shutout victories over South powers Cerritos, 1-0, in the semifinals and Mt. San Antonio, 2-0, in the championship final. Fresno ended Mt. SAC's 25-match undefeated streak. Pedro also clamped down against top opponent scorers during FCC's three shutouts in the North Regional Playoffs. By season's end, Fresno did not allow a goal over its final 657 minutes of play thanks in part to the stellar play of Gomes.
(Robert Lewis, CCCSIA)