Former Paso Robles High basketball star Derrick Jasper, now at UNLV, was named the Mountain West Conference preseason Newcomer of the Year on Tuesday when the conference released its media poll and all-conference selections.
Jasper, a two-time San Luis Obispo County Player of the Year (2005 and 2006) and a three-time all-county first-team selection, led the Bearcats to the CIF-Southern Section Division II-A semifinals as a senior.
The 6-foot-6, 210-pound point guard began his college career at Kentucky, where he started the final 27 games of his true freshman season in 2006-07. The Wildcats won the first 11 with him in the starting lineup, and he finished the year shooting 61.3 percent from the floor.
After the season, though, he underwent microfracture surgery to his ailing left knee, forcing him to miss the first 10 games of his sophomore campaign. Following a hobbled close to the 2007-08 season, Jasper transferred to UNLV, where he redshirted this past season, leaving him two more years of eligibility.
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Despite the knee impairment, Jasper still averaged 5.5 rebounds per contest as a sophomore and shot 45.7 percent from beyond the 3-point arc.
UNLV didn’t receive any first-place votes from the 24 media ballots, coming in third with 161 points behind three-time defending league champion BYU (215) and San Diego State (166).
UNLV shooting guard Tre’Von Willis was voted to the preseason all-conference team. Willis played with Jasper for the Fresno-based AAU program EBO. When the two played together in 2005, they teamed to win the prestigious Adidas Super 64 Tournament in Las Vegas, as Jasper was named the tournament MVP.
Earlier this offseason, FoxSports.com’s Jeff Goodman ranked Jasper as the seventh-most important transfer in the nation.
The Rebels, who went 21-11 last season, open by hosting Division II Pittsburg State on Nov. 14.
Firestone Grill Intercollegiate
Cal Poly’s Bryan Pierce, an Arroyo Grande High graduate, shot a 6-under 65 en route to a final score of 2-under 211 and a second-place finish at the Firestone Grill Intercollegiate at Monarch Dunes in Nipomo.
Pierce, who missed a school-record round of 64 by one stroke, had an eagle, six birdies and a pair of bogies on the par-71 course.
San Diego State’s Tyler Morris shot a final round 68 and won the tournament with a six-under 207, four strokes ahead of Pierce and Cal Poly freshman Pace Johnson, who shot a final round 68 and tied with Pierce.
The Cal Poly men won the overall team title by seven strokes over Cal State Fullerton.
Junior Jarod Knight was the third Cal Poly golfer to finish in the top five, shooting a 2-over 215, putting him in a fourth-place tie.
On the women’s side, defending Big West Conference champion Stephanie Yocum shot a final- round 71 to win the individual championship by six strokes over Cal Poly teammate Maddy Fletcher.
Cal State Northridge took the women’s team title despite tying Cal Poly with 917 total strokes. The Matadors won by virtue of a card-off between each team’s No. 5 golfer. Senior Julia Heath was the third Mustang to finish in the top 10, as her 234 total was good for ninth.
Cuesta 3, Oxnard 1
The Cougars (2-6-2, 1-1 Western State Conference) got goals from Joanna Garcia, Jamie Brooks and Annick Ospital-Cone to claim their first conference win of the season.
Garcia opened the scoring off a rebound of an Ashley McLachlan header to give Cuesta the lone goal of the first half.
After Oxnard cut the lead to 2-1 in the 84th minute, Ospital-Cone scored the insurance goal with two minutes left.