The Bird. Turtle. The Backstroke King.
They are known as three of Newport Harbor High's greatest athletes. Newport Harbor's "Big Three" can also be known as among the best in CIF Southern Section history.
George Yardley (basketball), Misty May-Treanor (volleyball) and Aaron Peirsol (swimming) are featured in the CIF Southern Section's "100 Athletes for 100 years," and represent the inaugural CIF Southern Section Athletes Hall of Fame, it was announced Monday.
Each of the Sailors' athletes hold a special place in Newport Harbor's Long Gray Line, and went on to reach stardom in the NBA for Yardley, and with Olympic gold for May-Treanor and Peirsol.
The list of 100 for the section's 100th anniversary was based on athletes who competed in the CIF Southern Section and ranged from success at all levels (high school, collegiate, Olympic and professional ranks).
"It says a lot about the area and the school itself," Newport Harbor High girls' volleyball coach Dan Glenn said of Newport Harbor having three athletes on the CIF Southern Section list. "It's very impressive."
Glenn has a strong connection with the three stars. He coached May-Treanor. Perisol was a student in his classroom. Glenn also knew Yardley, as well as his children and coached his grandchildren, Kyle and Cody Caldwell at Newport Harbor.
"We're in an area where there are a lot of elite athletes who train here," Glenn said. "The kids are aware of that and they grow up and see that in the area."
May-Treanor made the list as a 1995 grad of Newport Harbor. After leading the Sailors to two CIF State championships she won an NCAA title at Long Beach State, where she was named NCAA Player of the Year. She later became a beach volleyball legend.
She has three Olympic gold medals and one bronze, and has a women's record 112 beach tournament victories during a pro career that began in 1999. Her career winnings were listed at more than $2.1 million.
She teamed up with Kerri Walsh Jennings for the London Olympics this past summer and the duo won their third straight Olympic gold medal.
They defeated a team that featured another Newport Harbor great, April Ross, along with Jennifer Kessy in the gold-medal match.
May-Treanor and Walsh Jennings won gold medals at the 2008 Beijing and 2004 Athens Games. They dominated the sport in the Olympics, as the won every match they competed in and lost just one of 43 sets.
May-Treanor's popularity reached celebrity status, as she's made appearances on various TV shows, including, "Dancing With the Stars," and also made it on the Wheaties box.
She went out on top, retiring after the Olympics. She was named USA Volleyball's Athlete of the Year in women's beach volleyball.
"She always made everyone around her better," Glenn said of May-Treanor.
He said he enjoyed the way May-Treanor treated everyone the same and how she remained the same person while gaining popularity in volleyball.
Glenn said Peirsol was the same as a renown swimmer.
"I enjoyed having him in class," Glenn said of Peirsol. "He was very humble. Fantastic student."
Peirsol won five Olympic gold medals in swimming, specializing in the backstroke. He still holds world records in the 100-meter backstroke (51.94) and 200 back (1:51.92) for long course.
He led Newport Harbor to its first CIF Southern Section Division 1 team championship, when he won two individual titles and was on two winning freestyle relays.
He also went on to star for two years at the University of Texas.
Peirsol won three gold medals in the 2004 Olympics, sweeping the 100 and 200 back and contributing to the 400 medley relay victory. He won two gold medals in the 2008 Olympics in the 100 back, which was a world-record swim. He was also a part of the 400 medley relay team that set a world record.
He won 10 long-course world titles as well as six world titles in short-course races.
He started out as a youth competitor for the Harbor View Swim Team where he broke several age-group records.
"When I look back on my career I can smile," Peirsol told The Daily Pilot in February of 2001, after announcing his retirement.
Yardley is revered for his prowess on the hardwood, and later became a fixture in the Newport Beach community. He is in the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame.
The late Yardley, who passed away in the summer of 2004, was known as "The Bird," in his playing days. After starring at Newport Harbor, where he graduated in 1946, he went on to basketball stardom at Stanford and the NBA. The 6-foot-5 forward was named an All-Star six times in seven seasons, playing for the Fort Wayne and Detroit Pistons.
He retired from the NBA at 31 after seven years with a lifetime average of 19.2 points and 8.9 rebounds per game.
He was the first to score as many as 2,000 points in a single season in the NBA, breaking the mark of George Mikan of the Minneapolis Lakers.
CIF Southern Section 100 Athletes for 100 years
1905_Walter Johnson, baseball, Fullerton
1915_Earl Thompson, track, Long Beach Poly
1918_Chris Paddock, track, Pasadena
1922_Bud Houser, track, Oxnard
1923_Lillian Copeland, track, Los Angeles
1924_Morley Drury, football, Long Beach Poly
1928_Frank Wykoff, track, Glendale
1930_Arky Vaughn, baseball, Fullerton
1934_Cornelius Johnson, track, Los Angeles
1935_Lou Zamparini, track, Torrance
1936_Ted Williams, baseball, San Diego Hoover
1936_Bobby Riggs, tennis, L.A. Franklin
1937_Jackie Robinson, baseball, Muir
1938_Bob Lemon, baseball, Long Beach Wilson
1938_Frank Albert, football, Glendale
1939_Jack Kramer, tennis, Montebello
1940_Ralph Kiner, baseball, Alhambra
1943_Glenn Davis, football, Bonita
1944_Duke Snider, baseball, Compton
1946_George Yardley, basketball, Newport Harbor
1948_Pat McCormick, swimming, Long Beach Wilson
1949_Eddie Matthews, baseball, Santa Barbara
1949_Billy Casper, golf, Chula Vista
1949_Parry O'Brien, track, Santa Monica
1949_Jack Davis, track, Glendale Hoover
1952_Maureen Connolly, tennis, San Diego Cathedral
1953_Mickey Wright, golf, San Diego Hoover
1955_Charles Dumas, track, Compton Centennial
1956_Ron Mix, football, Hawthorne
1957_Bill Kilmer, football, Citrus
1960_John Huarte, football, Mater Dei
1961_Keith Erickson, basketball, El Segundo
1961_Billie Jean King-Moffitt, tennis, Long Beach Poly
1963_Bob Seagren, track, Pomona
1964_Rollie Fingers, baseball, Upland
1964_Ron Yary, football, Bellflower
1964_Earl McCullouch, football, Long Beach Poly
1964_Gene Washington, football, Long Beach Poly
1964_Stan Smith, tennis, Pasadena
1964_Martha Watson, track, Long Beach Poly
1968_Paul Westphal, basketball, Aviation
1969_Bert Blyleven, baseball, Santiago
1969_Sam Cunningham, football, Santa Barbara
1970_Jamaal Wilkes, basketball, Santa Barbara
1971_George Brett, baseball, El Segundo
1971_Raymond Lewis, basketball, Verbum Dei
1971_Pat Haden, football, Bishop Amat
1972_Gary Carter, baseball, Sunny Hills
1972_Dennis Johnson, basketball, Dominguez
1972_Laura Baugh, golf, Long Beach Wilson
1972_Flo Hyman, volleyball, Morningside
1975_Ann Meyers-Drysdale, basketball, Sonora
1975_Tim Shaw, swimming, Long Beach Wilson
1975_Mark O'Meara, golf, Mission Viejo
1976_Anthony Munoz, football, Chaffey
1977_Ronnie Lott, football, Eisenhower
1977_Brian Goodell, swimming, Mission Viejo
1977_Terry Schroeder, water polo, San Marcos
1978_Tony Gwynn, baseball, Long Beach Poly
1978_Karch Kiraly, volleyball, Santa Barbara
1979_Bruce Matthews, football, Arcadia
1979_Gary Zimmerman, football, Walnut
1979_Jill Sterkel, swimming, HH Wilson
1979_Maureen O'Toole, water polo, Long Beach Wilson
1981_Mike Powell, track, Edgewood
1982_Cheryl Miller, basketball, Riverside Poly
1982_Cynthia Woodhead, swimming, Riverside Poly
1983_Reggie Miller, basketball, Riverside Poly
1983_Natalie Kaaiawaha, track, Fullerton
1985_Dara Torres, swimming, Harvard-Westlake
1986_Joy Fawcett, soccer, Edison
1987_Eric Wynalda, soccer, Westlake
1989_Tracey Murray, basketball, Glendora
1989_Julie Foudy-Sawyers, soccer, Mission Viejo
1989_Lisa Fernandez-Lujan, softball, Lakewood St. Joseph
1989_Janet Evans, swimming, El Dorado
1989_Pete Sampras, tennis, Palos Verdes
1990_Lisa Leslie, basketball, Morningside
1991_Deena Drossin-Kastor, cross country, Agoura
1991_Todd Rogers, volleyball, San Marcos
1991_Leah O'Brien-Amico, softball, Don Lugo
1992_Lindsay Davenport, tennis, Murrieta Valley
1993_Marion Jones, track, Thousand Oaks
1994_Tony Gonzalez, football, Huntington Beach
1994_Tiger Woods, golf, Western
1995_Paul Pierce, basketball, Inglewood
1995_Joanna Hayes, track, North
1995_Misty May-Treanor, volleyball, Newport Harbor
1996_Stacey Nuveman, softball, St. Lucy's
1998_Carson Palmer, football, Santa Margarita
1998_Brenda Villa, water polo, Bell Gardens
1999_Amanda Beard, swimming, Irvine
1999_Tony Azevedo, water polo, Long Beach Wilson
1999_Steven Abas, wrestling, Canyon Springs
2000_Diana Taurasi, basketball, Don Lugo
2000_Landon Donovan, soccer, Redlands East Valley
2001_Matt Leinart, football, Mater Dei
2002_Aaron Peirsol, swimming, Newport Harbor
2003_Allyson Felix, track, L.A. Baptist
2005_Kami Craig, water polo, Santa BarbaraCopyright © 2015, CT Now