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John Weber, L.A. Angels David Fletcher’s Baseball Coach, Brings Glory to Cypress High With National Title Run

CYPRESS—Retired Santa Ana College baseball Coach Don Sneddon says he could spot the coaching talent in John Weber early on.

Sneddon knows talent. He’s the all-time winningest coach in California community college history.

“John was a self-made player,” Sneddon said of Weber, named National Baseball Coach of the Year after the Cypress High School Centurions took the CIF Division 1 championship in May. “He wasn’t the most talented, but he made up for it with his knowledge of the game and his commitment. I could tell even then that if he chose to go into coaching, he’d be good at it. He was always asking good questions, trying to understand the game.”

John Weber

But what really cemented Weber’s reputation in Sneddon’s mind came later, when Weber and his family rented a house that Sneddon’s parents owned. Weber took meticulous care of the front lawn, and Sneddon knew then that Weber would apply the same care to any field his team played on.

“That’s the level of detail John applies to his coaching,” Sneddon said, adding that the baseball field at Cypress is, indeed, widely known for its pristine nature.

“He’s turned it into a showpiece.”

A showpiece fit for a team ranked No. 1 nationally by Perfect Game USA.

Weber wasn’t entirely sure he wanted to coach at Cypress High, where he is a special education teacher, even after playing for Sneddon and then coaching alongside him.

“They were getting on me at lunchtime,” Weber recalled, “and so I’d go out to a practice, watch how they did some things, and then about a week later, I said, you know what, I’ll do it.” He served as pitching coach that first year, in 2005, when the team won its first of three CIF titles.

In 2006, he took over the head coaching reins, and in the 13 years since has racked up more than 300 wins. Weber’s teams have always been a point of pride to the Cypress High School community, never more so than this past season.

In turn, the team receives outstanding support from the school community, Weber said.

“The entire staff is incredibly helpful and supportive with our program, and the people involved—the players, coaching staff, parents—are really appreciative. I talk to our players about the great pride behind the baseball program and about how to present themselves in the community.”

Like all great coaches, Weber knows how to get the best out of his players, in his case, without losing sight of the fact that they are teenagers playing a game.

“John is the most strategic coach I have ever known,” Principal Dr. Jodie Wales said. “He is like watching a chess master as he moves his players around the field. However, he never loses sight of their stress during a game and gently reminds them to breathe, do what they know to do, and just have fun. His commitment to his team and school is admirable.”

Weber and Wales both say they’ll never forget May 18, the day the team won the CIF title.

“My best day as an administrator,” Wales said. “We started in Irvine for the girls’ softball Division 2 championship. The number of staff and students who came out to support our girls, including the entire boys baseball team and coaching staff, was touching. The girls’ victory fueled the enthusiasm for the boys’ game that same night at Dodger Stadium.

“Our section of the stands was packed with orange and blue and fans were on their feet cheering most of the game. The girls’ softball team was directly behind home plate, offering their support just as the boys had done for them earlier in the day. The boys’ victory on the heels of the girls’ was surreal.”

“What a whirlwind, amazing day,” Weber said. “To be able to win twice in the same day made it a really special year.”

Weber said he was especially heartened by the alumni turnout at the championship game. After the win, his phone blew up with congratulatory messages—including one from alumni David Fletcher of the Angels, who played on Weber’s 2013 Division 2 title team at Cypress.

Now that he’s had some time to process the honors and accolades, Weber is deep into planning for 2020, a “reloading year,” as he calls it. There’s no time to rest on his laurels. There are David Fletchers to coach and national titles to win.

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