Pleasanton Preps: Foothill volleyball coach named state Coach of the Year

Also: Both tennis teams, Falcon softball continue to roll

Sometimes things just make sense when it comes to sports.

This past week I learned that Foothill High boys and girls volleyball coach Dusty Collins is being recognized as the 2018-19 California Boys Volleyball Coach of the Year by the California Coaches Association.

Collins will be honored on June 15 in Fresno, and this is one deserving award.

In all my years covering high school sports, Collins consistently has gotten the most out of his teams. He has had some talent to be sure, but talent alone can't win titles -- and he was able to bring it all together.

There were other years when the cupboard appeared bare, but at the end of the season, there was Foothill either winning another title, or if not, at least advancing to the North Coast Section playoffs.

Collins has been more than just the volleyball coach, as he has also been the Foothill athletic director. There wasn't a Foothill sporting event that I didn't see Collins attend -- he even worked the scoreboard at the Foothill basketball games.

He will go on coaching volleyball, but he will no longer be the AD thanks to a, well, ridiculous new Pleasanton Unified School District policy regarding qualifications to be an AD. More on that to come in the future, but for now, let's all celebrate and pay tribute to Collins.

Amador volleyball

The Dons had an up-and-down week, splitting East Bay Athletic League matches, then advancing to the finals of the Foothill Invitational before falling.

The week started with straight-set win over Dublin. Leading the way for Amador were Luke McFall with 11 kills and four blocks, Logan Miller posting eight Kills and four blocks, Jacob Kim with five kills and four aces, Nolan Gill with 10 digs and 11 passes, and Will Sadler with six kills and three blocks.

The next match saw the Dons drop a four-setter to Monte Vista. Miller had 10 kills and four blocks, with McFall adding eight kills and three blocks. Sadler (six kills, three blocks) and Jacob Kim (two kills, two blocks and great passing) also played well.

In the Foothill tournament the Dons advanced to the finals beating Alhambra, Deer Valley, Irvington, College Prep and Foothill, before falling to Northgate in the finals.


The Dons moved to 23-0 on the season with a pair of wins last week.

First up was an 8-1 win over Monte Vista. Aadarsh Tripathi, Ben Deriquito, Vedhant Kaliyur, Eswarsai Ramineni, Vishal Muthuvel and Sankalp Sharma swept the singles matches. In doubles, the teams of Robert Heeter/Brett Miller and Manas Aavula/Idan Belau took their matches.

The next match for Amador was a 9-0 win over Granada with Deriquito, Kaliyur, Ramineni, Muthuvel, Sharma and Xinyu Qiu sweeping the singles. The doubles sweeps were completed by Heeter/Miller, Aavula/Belau and Ethan Allavarpu/Nithilan Muruganandham.

Across town, Foothill improved its record to 15-1 by defeating San Ramon Valley 9-0 and Dublin 8-1.

In the San Ramon Valley match, Shreekar Eedara, Adam Linette, Akash Patel, Ani Poruri, Kolben Thompson and Abhi Eedara swept the singles. The doubles teams of Praveen Sentha/Dylan Weiglein, Matt Haskell/Vince Barletta and Genghe Zhu/Andrew Kwon chalked up victories.

The Falcons then visited Dublin and Eedara, Linette, Poruri, Thompson and Kwon were victorious in the singles. In doubles, Haskell/Barletta, Dong/Sentha and Mihir Weiling/Ryan Weiglein won.

Foothill softball

The Falcons kept their roll going, staying unbeaten with a pair of wins last week.

The first game was a 10-1 thumping of San Ramon Valley. Maddie Heinlin went the distance in the circle, giving up just three hits. Foothill's offense had 12 hits, with Hope Alley leading the way with a pair of doubles and she drove in a pair of runs. Nicole May, Hailey Hayes and Ally McElroy each had multiple hits.

The second game was a 5-1 final against Livermore with May allowing seven hits and striking out nine to lead the way. Foothill had 10 hits, with three players hitting home runs -- Alley, Hayes and Ebbers.

Foothill baseball

It was a tough week for the Falcons as they dropped a pair of games.

First, was a 7-4 loss to San Ramon Valley. Six Foothill players had hits, including two doubles by Max Masajlo and Matt Sugden. Jason Dormann was the closing pitcher allowing no hits or runs.

Next was a 11-7 defeat against Livermore. Highlight from the game was a double by Luke Novitske.

Editor's note: Dennis Miller is a contributing sports writer for the Pleasanton Weekly. To contact Miller or submit local high school sports scores, game highlights and photographs for his weekly Pleasanton Preps column, email him at

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Like this comment
Posted by Gen gTlin
a resident of Stoneridge
on Apr 24, 2019 at 11:31 am

Congratulations, Dusty! Well deserved. You have been a champion your entire career. Lydiksen LDies are cheering for you!

Like this comment
Posted by Jim Campbell
a resident of Val Vista
on Apr 24, 2019 at 11:40 am

I had three children (2 girls and 1 boy) that had the distinct pleasure to play volleyball for Coach Collins. In those 8 combined years they went to NCS each year. However, the success they enjoyed and the improvement in their volleyball skills were secondary to the valuable lessons they learned from Dusty regarding hard work and commitment to team. The impact he had on their lives was significant and each had him hand them their HS diplomas. As parents we were grateful that our kids were a part of his program. Congratulations Coach on a very well deserved award!

Like this comment
Posted by Resident
a resident of Foothill High School
on Apr 25, 2019 at 4:03 pm

Congratulations Coach Collins! There isn't anyone more deserved. You have not been just a winning coach. You have been an exemplary example to your players, students, their parents and the entire Foothill community. There is no finer than Coach Collins. I have no idea what additional qualifications you would ever need in your repertoire to be considered eligible for the AD position. You are an inspiration!

Like this comment
Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Apr 25, 2019 at 4:12 pm

Great recognition, congratulations and thank you.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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