It’s been quite a week for the Ontario High School football team. Coach Ron Stocking stepped down on Saturday a day after his team won its Mt. Baldy opener against Garey.
Athletic director Ryan Alvarez stepped in to try and pick up where Stocking, who got a more financially stable job not in the education field, had left off.
Alvarez admitted Monday was a little hectic but things started settling down on Tuesday. He said his players were adapting as well as can be expected.
“They are doing better than what most adults in the same situation,” he said. “I have been very proud of the way they have carried on. It says a lot about the type of kids they are.”
Alvarez said he won’t change anything when it comes to strategy or game plan and he’ll rely heavily on offensive coordinator Bo Hust and defensive coordinator James Hutch who had worked with Stocking.
“They’re both great young coaches. If it’s not broke, don’t fix it,” he said.
Unfortunately the change comes right before what may be the toughest game of the season – against defending Mt. Baldy champion Chino.
And the Jaguars will be without quarterback Edgar Murillo who is still nursing a knee injury. Sophomore Cameron Poe will fill in.
No doubt the team’s tenacity is being tested.
Ontario High School is the first school to change football coaches this season as Ron Stocking has resigned. Stocking, 30, got a job offer in another sector that was too good to pass up.
The team was told on Saturday. Stocking said the players were understanding and supportive of his decision which made it that much more difficult.
Athletic director Ryan Alvarez, who has coached in the lower levels of the program the last several years, will serve as interim coach the remainder of the season. He says he’ll rely heavily on his offensive and defensive coordinators.
Stocking was not on staff at the school, something pretty much unheard of for a head football coach at any school nowadays. He said he was hoping a teaching position would open up but that never happened. One really can’t blame him if a job came up that made for better financial stability for his family.
The Jaguars were 5-15 in his two previous years and were 1-4 this season, that win coming Friday when they opened Mt. Baldy League play with a win over Garey.
Being new to the prep beat I have had limited dealings with Stocking but he seemed like a good guy who genuinely cared about his players. I wrote a feature on one the Jaguar players earlier this month, senior Christian Beltran. Beltran spoke very highly of Stocking and his entire coaching staff so I can go on that.
Next up for Ontario is a showdown with defending league champion Chino this Friday.
Montclair High School’s Fernando Soto gave new meaning to the words playing through pain.
The junior, who plays linebacker but also serves as the team’s long snapper, played much of the second half of the 38-6 win over San Gabriel with a broken ankle.
Coach T.J. Fiorenza says he was without his backup long snapper too because his backup was unable to make the game.
Soto apparently broke the ankle while playing defense and was hobbling around so much so that the officials told Fiorenza the player couldn’t be out on the field.
Undeterred the player “snuck” his way onto the field to handle his long-snapping duties.
Fiorenza also singled out the play of senior corner back-wide receiver Drew Gonzales, a transfer FROM Upland. The school was waiting for word on his eligibility from the CIF and that didn’t come until the day of the game. Because of that the coaches weren’t counting on him but got a great contribution.
The Cavaliers (1-0) host Alta Loma (0-1) on Thursday.
Al Brown knew he had his work cut out for him when he took the head football job at Garey High School 17 or so months ago.
The school hasn’t fared well in athletic circles recently, the exception being soccer. The feeder system isn’t exactly strong and the athletes it has drawn haven’t been well-versed in the sport. So right now he’ll take the small victories.
Brown is optimistic, as all coaches are this time of season. A year ago there were just 50 players in the program so the school didn’t field a junior varsity team. That number has swelled to 100 this year. That is reason enough for hope.
Spent some time today with the Colony High School football team, headed by second year coach Steve Randall.
All say there is a bit more unity and camaraderie this year. Randall took over in the spring last year and word is that last year’s seniors really never bought in and had their own agenda. I guess we’ll see.
The Titans have a new offensive coordinator in Kevin Davis and will be running an up-tempo no-huddle offense. That should be exciting for the spectators. QB Jonathan Trucks will be the catalyst, along with all-everything standout Devan Imbach who will be a factor on both sides of the ball.
The Titans are coming off a 7-5 showing, that included a second-round playoff berth. Randall was pleased with that all things considered, but knows at Colony there are higher expectations.
There is no tie to waste as the Titans have a game on Aug. 23 against Rancho Cucamongna. The first home game will be Sept. 6 against Corona.
PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Miranda Viramontes, Chino, Jr., Pitcher
Miranda Viramontes may have produced the same end result as last season, but rest assured, the path was entirely different.
It is a testament to the pitcher’s talent that she led her team through a playoff gauntlet to a CIF championship as an inexperienced sophomore in 2012. It was practically unfair for opponents this season.
Having not just a year under her belt, but a run through the playoffs chock-full of tense one-run games, Viramontes’ postseason performance in 2013 was off the charts. In the playoffs alone, the junior pitched a no-hitter and three one-hitters, one of which netted a 4-0 win over Lakewood in the CIF-SS Division 2 championship game on June 1.
The lone playoff game Viramontes allowed more than one hit was a nine-inning 2-1 victory.
“I don’t think this season could have ended up any better,” Viramontes said. “With my record and my numbers and where we ended up as a team, it was just unbelievable.”
Miranda Viramontes was destined for awards beyond the CIF-SS championship plaque she hoisted on June 1. The only playoff game that wasn’t a no-hitter or a one-hitter for the Chino pitcher was a 2-1 semifinal win. The junior’s shutout in the title game awarded Chino its second consecutive CIF championship to which Viramontes added a CIF-SS Division 2 Player of the Year award today. Chino coach Mike Smith was awarded Coach of the year in Division 2 after a 29-2 season that was unquestionably the best in school history.
To view all-CIF teams for baseball and softball, click the link below.
Chino’s dominance can’t be confined to Southern California. The juggernaut softball team that claimed its second consecutive CIF-SS Division 2 championship on Saturday, was named the Division 2 state softball team of the year by Cal-Hi Sports. Here is the photo gallery from the historic 4-0 win over Lakewood.
Chino finished fourth in the state rankings last season, but a season that included just two one-run losses vaulted the Cowgirls to the top. And they’re not done yet. Utah-bound pitcher Miranda Viramontes will return for her senior season along with four freshman who played prominent roles this season.
Mission Viejo, one of the two teams to which Chino lost during the regular season – Viramontes, however, didn’t pitch in the Cowgirls’ 7-6 loss March 9 – was the overall state No. 1 entering the playoffs. The No. 1 seed in Division 2 fell to Ayala. Coincidentally, Ayala was the last local team to end the season as Cal-Hi Sports’ overall No. 1 team in the state when a Jessica Hall-led squad won a CIF title.
All it took was one hit.
Chino’s game was so refined by the time the softball team reached Saturday’s CIF-SS Division 2 championship game that one hit was enough to convince Cowgirls coach Mike Smith a second consecutive title was in the bag.
Ruby Barroso’s second-inning solo home run turned out to be enough as Miranda Viramontes pitched her third one-hitter of the playoffs to lead Chino to a 4-0 win over Lakewood and a second consecutive CIF championship.
Viramontes, who last season was the centerpiece of the first CIF championship softball team in school history, allowed just two runs the entire postseason. With eight strikeouts and two walks, the junior won her 21st consecutive start by defeating fourth-seeded Lakewood on Saturday in a game she entered with a 0.36 earned-run average.
“You give Miranda a lead and it’s pretty much over,” Smith said. “You look at the numbers, I think it’s been years since anybody’s done what she did. I don’t think there’s anybody in the state that pitched better this year.”
There is a little bit of a gap seeing as the CIF-Southern Section is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year and Mike Smith has been coaching for 26 years.
Regardless of the context, the Chino softball coach’s profession of his pitcher’s greatness is a bold one.
Miranda Viramontes hasn’t given anyone reason not to believe him, winning a CIF-SS championship in her first season as a starter and carrying the Cowgirls to the brink of another as a junior.
On the strength of two postseason one-hitters and a no-hitter preceding Tuesday’s 2-1 win in nine innings, Viramontes (pictured above) has pitched Chino within one win of a second straight CIF championship.
“I was telling them at the CIF meeting that I think this is the most dominant a pitcher has ever been in the history of CIF,” Smith said. “That’s the type of year she’s having.”