There’s no such thing as a down year at Long Beach City College, the school that’s won more state championships than any other junior college in California. This year was more of the same, with seven conference championships and another state crown, as well as a big change at the top of the athletic department.
The biggest story from LBCC this year was the resignation of popular athletic director Randy Totorp, who departed in January to take the job at Saddleback.
“This was extremely difficult for me, but I am also grateful and excited about the opportunity,” Totorp said.
A former LBCC athlete and state champion coach, Totorp was midway through the fourth year of a very successful tenure at the school. LBCC has undergone major facility renovation, as well as big-time hires including three-time Olympic gold medalist Misty May-Treanor to run the school’s volleyball program.
Totorp’s replacement for the moment is Bill Husak, who has done a stellar job serving as interim AD for the last five months. Husak is more than qualified, having led Loyola Marymount as its athletic director for 20 years, winning national awards. Husak was in charge of the fund-raising campaign to build the Walter Pyramid at Long Beach State, where he was a senior associate AD from 1993-98 before taking the LMU job.
Just three months into his contract at LBCC (Husak signed a one-year contract), the interim AD got to celebrate a state title. The LBCC men’s volleyball team swept Irvine Valley in dominant fashion to claim the school’s 93rd state title, in its 93rd year of existence. Few titles have been as impressive as the 25-22, 25-12, 25-12 sweep.
“If you followed us at all this year you know that we had some high points and some low points,” Vikings coach Jonathan Charette said. “We had a different lineup every night, every set sometimes. We had a lot of growing.”
It was the 10th state title for the men’s volleyball team.
LBCC (19-3) came into the state playoffs seeded third but playing better than anyone else in the state. They swept No. 2 El Camino on Thursday and then took down the Lasers in just 70 minutes in the state final.
“I thought we served very well,” Charette said. “What kept us going this year was that we knew we had the right pieces, we just had to figure out how where to put them so that we peaked at the right moment.”
It was a sweet moment for Charette, who won his third state title as a head coach, and fifth overall at LBCC, having won one as a player and one as an assistant coach. In eight seasons running the show at LBCC, Charette is now 140-28 with three state titles, five conference titles, and six years in the state Final Four. LBCC also improves to 3-0 in the state championship under Charette.
That wasn’t the only championship the Vikings brought home in 2018-19. The school claimed conference titles in baseball, men’s basketball, men’s water polo, women’s volleyball, beach volleyball, and women’s water polo.
Longtime men’s basketball coach Barry Barnes’s team not only won a conference title, they made the final round of the SoCal Regional playoffs before being eliminated. Aquatics coach Chris Oeding’s water polo teams both brought home titles, and May-Treanor nabbed conference titles with her indoor and beach volleyball programs. The women’s beach program was also the team runner-up at the state championship tournament.