Magallon, Tademy are Reedley High Athletes of the Year

Soccer star and aquatics standout garner top Male and Female awards, schools recognizes participants for their athletic and academic achievement in 2023-24 class year

Reedley High School Male and Female Athletes of the Year Jose Magallon and Grace Tademy hold their awards after the school’s annual ceremony on June 3 at the RHS Performing Arts Theatre. Magallon was a four-year varsity standout in soccer while Tademy starred in swimming and water polo and holds two school swim records. (Jon Earnest)
Jon Earnest
Published June 4, 2024  • 
12:30 pm

REEDLEY – Soccer standout Jose Magallon and aquatics star Grace Tademy captured the top awards — Male and Female Athlete of the Year — at Reedley High School’s annual Athletic Awards Ceremony.

Monday night’s event at the RHS Performing Arts Theatre honored and recognized all Pirates athletes who represented the school during the 2023-24 sports year. The Reedley Pirate Foundation once again sponsored the ceremony along with the school’s athletic department.

Both Magallon and Tademy had impressive athletic resumes to earn their honors. Magallon was a four-year player, team captain and MVP and first team all-Tri County Conference performer as well as three-year all-league performer. He was a starter and key contributor as a sophomore as the Pirates captured the Central Section Division I championship in 2022, and finished his career with 48 goals and 18 assists.

Other finalists for Male Athlete of the Year were David Arroyo, four years varsity wrestler and two-time state qualifier; Travis Booth, four-year letter winner in water polo and swim and three-time 500 free league champion; and Salvador Mendoza, three-year letter winner in football and track who was the TCC Lineman of the Year in the 2023 season.

Tademy, meanwhile, etched her name in the school’s girls record book during a four-year letter-winning career in swimming and water polo. She holds the school record in the girls 100 freestyle with a time of 54.89 seconds, originally breaking a mark that stood since 1986. In addition, she and teammates Kanada Enns, Madison Nava and Sophia Milton broke a 38-year school record and won the Division II section title in the 400 free relay.

Tademy also stood out in water polo, earning TCC Most Valuable Player as a senior while leading the Pirates to the conference crown for a third consecutive season. She was second team all-CIF, and also was first team all-league selection for three years.

The other Female Athlete of the Year finalists were Raquel Cortez, career 1,000 point scorer and conference MVP in basketball; Kamarin Holm, four-year water polo and swim standout  who also played varsity basketball for three years; and Emily Pallesi, four-year varsity in basketball and track (final two at RHS) who in 2023 teamed with Cortez to help lead the Pirates to the D-V section title.

Other notable winners were Ryan Velasquez and Joclynne Chavez, named Senior Scholar Athletes of the Year. Basketball and baseball standout Velasquez carried a cumulative grade point average of 4.096 (14th among school seniors) while tennis and badminton star Chavez compiled a 3.94 GPA (36th in the Class of 2024).

Holm (aquatics, basketball) also was presented with the prestigious Green Pin and “I” Pass, given in honor of former RHS Athletic Director Larry Iwasaki. The award is presented to a senior athlete who participated in a fall, winter and sport team or individually all four years of high school; signifying the epitome of a multi-sports athlete.

Twenty athletes, 10 each for male and female, were presented “True Champion” awards for athletic achievement and demonstrating the characteristics of the California Interscholastic Federation of “Pursuing Victory with Honor” and promoting six core pillars of character. The winners were nominated by a coach in a single sport.

Male winners were Arroyo (wrestling), Will Bacon (track and field), Alan Flores (football), Elias Garcia (golf), Angel Godinez (baseball), Magallon (soccer), Chris Morales (basketball), Moses Quevedo (volleyball), Markus Santos (tennis) and Quincy Yada (swimming). Female winners were Emily Chapa (badminton), Enns (swim), Melanie Escareno (cheer), Sierra Hallum (softball), Peyton Hansen (golf), Kenzie Herrera (wrestling), Holm (water polo, basketball), Daniela Ramirez (soccer), Kyana Rivera (volleyball) and Tademy (water polo).

This year’s Coaches of the Year for RHS were Kyle Bunch for Boys Team and Louie Morales for Girls Team. Bunch directed the Pirates to the Tri County Conference championship while Morales was recognized for his work with the RHS track program that included a school-record performance from 300-meter hurdles specialist A’Aliyah Matlock.

During the program, all sports during the three athletic seasons were mentioned and recognized. Qualifying athletes also were presented with Gold Star pins (competing four years in a varsity sport) and Gold Stripe (lettering for four years in a varsity sport).

Darren Minami, Pirates athletic director, was master of ceremonies for the event in place of veteran emcee Mark Givens. The decades-long “Voice of the Pirates” is retiring from his position this season, and was unable to attend the event. Minami expressed appreciation for his many years of service to the school and athletic department.

Jon Earnest