Last school year, as a junior at Cathedral Catholic High School, Parker Hipp won two CIF Div. 3 championships in football and baseball, but came up short in the semi-finals in basketball. This year, that championship triple has become a goal.
“This coming school year my overall goal at Cathedral is to win three CIF titles,” said Hipp. “We have a good nucleus from our football, baseball, and basketball teams coming back.”
The last Cathedral Catholic or University of San Diego High School (the school’s former incarnation) athlete to win three titles was Carlos Quentin, who is currently leading the American League in home runs for the Chicago White Sox.
“My dad Mike got me interested in baseball,” said senior to-be Hipp. “I was 5 years old when I started T-ball. Basketball I started playing in the sixth grade and was introduced to flag football in the seventh grade.”
As a three-varsity letterman, it must seem sometimes that there are not enough hours in the day for Hipp. But, he says he can handle the schedule.
“It’s tough, but I’m a good manager of time,” he said. “There isn’t any break between the thee sports. After practices, I make sure I do homework and study for one to two hours.” Last years Parker’s GPA was 2.8.
To top his hectic schedule, on weekends he works between eight to 10 hours at Jamba Juice. “The manager at Jamba knows my sports schedule, and accommodates me for weekend work.”
Going into last season’s football play, the 6' 2'’ Parker was competing with 5' 10'’ senior Nick Russell for the starting quarterback job. The job went to Russell, but since Hipp was so athletic, Head Football Coach Sean Doyle had Hipp play wide receiver. Hipp responded by leading the team in receptions.
“This being my last year, I would like to be the starting quarterback,” said Parker. “But, whatever Coach decides, if it is the receiver spot I can handle it too. Since I played QB on the freshman and JV teams, I’m leaning towards that position. As QB you have the ball and you are in control.”
Besides the CIF championship game at Qualcomm last season, Hipp says his most memorable game was against Mira Mesa for the Western League title.
“We won in overtime and I caught the winning TD, and that was very exciting,” he said. Parker hopes his team repeats in football and gets a chance to play for the state championship.
Parker’s routine on game day is to eat spaghetti, and three cookies. “I have to be the last one out of the gym during our pre-game walk through,” he said. “Since we have two trainers, I have a certain one tape my left wrist first, then my right one. For the CIF championship game, that trainer wasn’t in the locker room and my coach said ‘lets take the field.’ Fortunately, she arrived and taped my wrists on the field.”
Parker says if he had to choose, he would pick baseball above football, but only by a hair. “I don’t see myself playing basketball in college,” he said.
Hipp’s baseball statistics were impressive. The starting second baseman led the Dons in hitting with a .457 average, with 42 hits and 28 RBI. Along with an on base percentage) of .550 and a slugging percentage of .598, Hipp was named Union Tribune First Team Div. 3 and on July 17, he was named First Team All-State underclassman.
Hipp says his role model in sports is his godfather Ralph Nasif. “He is my hitting coach and always stresses defense,” says Hipp. He played Triple-A ball for the Minnesota Twins, but Rafael Fucal beat him out and was called up to the majors. My defense is my strength in baseball. I was named defensive player of the year at Cathedral.”
In 29 games for the Dons’ basketball team, Hipp averaged 5.5 points per game.
“We kind of overlooked University City in the semi-finals,” said Parker, who played guard and wingman. “We beat them three times during the year, twice in league and once in a tournament. Now, I realize it is hard beating a team four times in one season” University City upset Cathedral at the Dons’ gym for the CIF semi-final win.
During Parker Hipp’s down time, what little there is of it, he likes watching “Scrubs,” listening to soft rock and hip-hop and enjoys eating chicken. “Inside Man” is his favorite movie and academic subject of choice is math. Since he was born and raised in San Diego, Hipp says he would like to attend a West Coast university. San Diego State, Gonzaga and Kansas, have shown some interest in Hipp.