May 16, 2013 4:35 PM by Andrew Masuda
Two St. Joseph High basketball stars signed scholarship papers on Thursday to play for national collegiate power houses. Case Bruton made his commitment official to Concordia University, a NAIA program in Irvine, while Tatiana Dunlap signed papers to play at Cal State Monterey Bay.
The 6-3 Bruton averaged 21 points and almost 6 rebounds per game his senior season for the Knights. He earned First Team All-CIF and First Team All-Pac 7 League honors.He helped the Knights finish 23-9 and advance into the CIF semifinals and second round of the CIF So-Cal Regionals. He was a four year varsity player, three years at St. Joseph and his freshman year at Morro Bay.
Concordia is coming off a 23-11 season seventh straight appearance in the NAIA Tournament. The Eagles have played in four of the last nine NAIA national championship games and won the national crown most recently in 2012. The Eagles compete in the Golden State Athletic Conference and have won five of the last seven GSAC titles.
"I felt like the coaches really wanted me and I really liked the coaches and I felt a connection not only with the coaches but the school. And I just really feel like it's going to be a good fit academically and athletically," said Bruton, who plans to major in business management. He said the Eagles just lost their shooting guard to graduation. So not only will he have a chance to compete for playing time as a freshman, but he could also be in the mix for a starting position. "It's what I've always wanted. I've always wanted to play college basketball and I feel really fortunate to have such a great opportunity."
Dunlap earned First Team All-CIF honors and was named the Pac 7 League's Most Valuable Player her senior season. She led the Knights to a 19-9 record and league title by averaging almost 24 points, 9 rebounds and 3 steals per game. Dunlap was a member of St. Joseph's CIF State Championship team as a sophomore. She played four years of varsity hoops, three seasons at St. Joseph and her freshman season at Cabrillo.
Cal State Monterey Bay has enjoyed three straight 20+ win seasons and NCAA Tournament appearances. The Otters went 20-9 this past season and lost in the Regional semifinals. They compete in the California College Athletic Association title and last won the conference title in 2011.
Dunlap said she felt a real connection with the Otters' head coach Renee Jimenez. Dunlap could compete for playing time as a freshman.
"It is something that I always wanted to do. I did want to play Division I. But I found out it just wasn't a fit for me. I found out that being with a family is more important. Basketball is something I love and not like a job to me. So I'm really happy with my decision," said Dunlap.
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