A total of 5 teams from the Baseline League made the CIF Girls Division 1 playoffs: Rancho Cucamonga, Chino Hills, Los Osos, Etiwanda and Upland.
The Baseline’s No. 3 team Los Osos is traveling on the road against Flintridge Sacred Heart while Etiwanda and Upland received at-large bids and will travel as well.
The Rancho Cucamonga Cougars and the Chino Hills Huskies are listed on the bracket as the host team, but a jersey violation will send the Huskies on the road to Long Beach Millikan.
The violation was because of a “two-inch strip on the shoulder of our jerseys on Jan. 3 against Ayala,” said Huskies’ coach Andy Plascencia.
Rules such as the one about the jerseys became effective by the CIF at the start of the New Year.
“The referee (from the game against Ayala) reported it,” Plascencia said. “We thought it would just be a warning at first…it did creep back up on us.”
The team has since ordered new jerseys that comply with the new CIF rules.
Since the Huskies did not have an actual home field until the final two weeks of league play, Plascencia is not worried about having to travel to Long Beach despite still being considered the home team.
“It’s not a factor for us. We have traveled and played on the road all season,” he explained. “We usually would have to travel about 45 minutes for each game so an extra 15 minutes (to Long Beach) should not be a problem.”
Sommer Larrabee and the Etiwanda Eagles handed the Chino Hills Huskies’ girls soccer team its first Baseline League loss, 1-0.
Larrabee scored the lone goal for the Eagles in the shutout against the Huskies, which also served as their first loss in nine games.
“Everything happened so fast, I remember getting the ball and dribbling the ball a few times,” Larrabee said. “(I) looked at the top left corner, looked back at
the ball and shot it.”
Larrabee felt that the Eagles knew the task at hand prior to the game.
“We knew as a team we needed a positive result from this game,” she said. “We played with everything we had and it showed in the final score.”
Larrabee believes that the outcome of this game serves as a lesson for her team.
“The feeling is indescribable. We knew Chino Hills was going to be a top contender in our league,” she said. “By being their first loss of the season it showed our team what we can accomplish when we play with our hearts on our sleeves. It is a game I am never going to forget.”
The victory ties the Eagles at one game apiece in the head-to-head series with the Huskies, after Etiwanda suffered a 3-1 loss to Chino Hills on Jan. 21 during a three game losing streak.
Chino Hills will finish the season on the road against Los Osos on Feb. 11 while Etiwanda will play Upland.
No doubt the Chino Hills boys’ basketball team has talent. Ball brothers Lonzo and LiAngelo (Gelo) are enough to get any team deep into the playoffs.
But can this team win a CIF title, especially considering they’ll most likely be in the difficult Open Division?
After talking with coaches from the other Baseline League teams, the consensus is that will depend on the contribution of the supporting cast.
Last year that duo had some solid players around them in Bishop Mency, now starting at Rice as a true freshman, as well as K.C. Cyprian and Mark Williams.
The Huskies also had a big man in the middle in Nnamdi Okongwu, who tragically passed away over the summer after the injury sustained in a skateboarding accident.
So this season Ball brothers have some unproven players around them. Is there potential? Yes. But they’re still unproven.
The good news is that the Huskies (10-3) have played a challenging schedule which should help those players develop.
Head coach Steve Baik probably thought he was going to have the help those players needed but two transfers, one from Ayala and one from Upland, were not ruled eligible to play by the CIF after those transfers.
Those denials are under appeal but it isn’t often they’re overturned. So the Huskies will be going with the players they have right now.
The jumble of teams behind Sierra League champion West Covina South Hills during the regular season didn’t make for any easy decisions after the year ended. The all-league team had an obvious MVP, but there were plenty of arguments to be made beyond that. As it turned out, second-place Damien, and third-place Claremont (which tied in the standings) received three first team all-league selections as did third-place Chino Hills.
There is a 50 percent chance at Monday’s releaguing meeting that the Baseline League will get even more competitive. Yes, you read that correctly.
The league that has produced two semifinalists for two years running in arguably the toughest football playoff division in California could be deeper beginning in the fall of 2014. Of the 20 releaguing proposals for the Mt. SAC area that will be voted on Monday, 10 of them include Chino Hills in the Baseline League.
Aside from the obvious geographic and economic reasons, Chino Hills was not shy about its preference to remain in the Sierra League, where it has won three football league championships in the last five years.
“Football is the money sport that I think people generally judge a school by,” Chino Hills athletic director Derek Bub said. “Unfortunately that’s what might get us moved. But we haven’t dominated the Sierra League in all sports. We’ve been in the middle of the pack.”
There were six games left in the regular season and the Claremont baseball team sat just a game out of second place, but coach Geoff Ranney told his team Thursday’s rubber match with Chino Hills was a must-win. The coach’s reasoning makes sense given the tight proximity of everybody in the Sierra League. The Wolfpack responded with a 6-3 victory over Chino Hills that pulled Claremont back into a tie for second place and claimed the season series with a Huskies team that had won eight of its last nine games. Check out a photo gallery from the game.
Patricia Parks, the star pitcher for the defending CIF champion Chino Hills softball team, has returned to the team after leaving indefinitely two weeks ago.
Following the first two tournaments of the season, Parks, a junior committed to the University of Arizona, left the team of her own accord.
“Patricia decided she did not want to play anymore,” Chino Hills coach Mike Southworth said in an email. “She was not removed from our team. Nobody likes to lose a player of Patricia’s ability, but athletes have to want to be there and be there on the coach’s terms.”
Chino Hills junior Patricia Parks, the starting pitcher for the defending CIF-SS Division 3 softball champions, left the team last week, according to Huskies head coach Mike Southworth. Parks, who is verbally committed to Arizona, hit .479 and went 10-1 with a 1.07 ERA last season behind primary pitcher Nikki Innamorato. An everyday outfielder last year, Parks was the Huskies primary pitcher this season.
“Patricia decided she did not want to play anymore,” Southworth said in an email. “She was not removed from our team. Nobody likes to lose a player of Patricia’s ability, but athletes have to want to be there and be there on the coach’s terms.”
The vision that prompted Matt Bechtel to leave his first head coaching job after just two seasons and leave the Chaffey Joint Union School District after 16 years came to fruition last week. After one year as the Chino Hills offensive coordinator, Bechtel was hired as the school’s head football coach. He interviewed on Feb. 12 and was offered the position Feb. 14.
Bechtel, Colony’s head coach from 2010 to 2011, replaces Derek Bub, who resigned after five years as head coach citing the death of his father in October and his desire to pursue an administrative position. Knowing Bub was closing in on his administrative credential, Bechtel had his eye on the Chino Hills head coaching job when he accepted the offensive coordinator role and a teaching position last year in the Chino Valley Unified School District. But the move didn’t come without risk.
“Most people don’t get an administrative credential and sit on it for five or six years,” Bechtel said. “Did I think this was going to happen in eight months? No. It was a gamble for me to come here. I gave up tenure and 16 years at a time when job security in the teaching profession was in disarray, but you can’t get ahead in life without taking risks.”