With the myriad rules concerning CIF playoff pairings – keeping first-place teams from playing anybody that finished higher than third place, preventing potential second-round matchups between teams in the same league, etc. – the top four teams in each bracket are the only ones CIF can truly seed.
Despite facing No. 2 and No. 3 seeds, respectively, Norco and Diamond Ranch advanced to the second round of the playoffs Friday night.
Norco, the Inland Division’s at-large team, handed undefeated Rancho Verde a 19-9 loss Friday night while Diamond Ranch, whose record is still under .500 even with the playoff win, showed third-seeded Pacific League champ Pasadena Muir the door with a 21-7 victory in the Southeast Division’s first round.
Diamond Ranch (5-6) is the equivalent of the 13th seed while Norco (7-4) is the 15th.
In my estimation, these were the two biggest upsets of the first round of the playoffs.