Blue Cut Fire forces Serrano football to miss prep time

Serrano High School football coach Ray Maholchic hopes his team won’t be at too much of a disadvantage next week.
Just more than a week away from their Aug. 26 season opener at home against Lancaster Paraclete, the team will miss five days of practice this week because of the Blue Cut Fire.
With the fire escalating quickly Tuesday, practice was cancelled that day and school has been cancelled for the rest of the week. Maholchic, who is also the school’s athletic director, said the Snowline Joint Unified School District’s policy is no practices can be held if school is cancelled for reasons such as a wildfire.
“This is kind of a first for us. We’re done for the week,” Maholchic said. “We’ve got limited practice opportunities. This sets us back a little bit.”
Serrano had been set to scrimmage at Redlands on Friday with the freshman team scheduled to host Redlands Thursday in a scrimmage.
Serrano will now go without the scrimmage and Redlands will join a scrimmage at Grand Terrace that includes Grand Terrace, Chino and Riverside Norte Vista.
“Usually, we have a scrimmage where we can correct some things, but we’ll go right into game week,” Maholchic said.
Maholchic, who was evacuated from his home in Wrightwood, where many of his players also live, expects to be back at school and practicing as usual on Monday. He also expects to be able to play next week’s game at home.
First, I hope that as many homes as possible can be saved from this brutal fire, and not just those who are with Serrano football.
That being said, you have to wonder how well the football players are doing emotionally, even if their families and homes are safe.
I hope it doesn’t have too much of a negative impact on them as they prepare for their Week 0 game. In addition, I hope there won’t be any issues with playing the game at Serrano.

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Darren Jones could be filling void for Cajon football

Cajon football could be getting a big-time transfer that would help the Cowboys for the next three years.
Darren Jones had 19 catches for 437 yards and five touchdowns as a 6-foot-7 freshman last year. He lead the Highlanders, who went to the second round of the playoffs, in all three categories.
Cajon coach Nick Rogers confirmed that Jones is at Cajon, but said that his transfer status is still pending. The CIF Southern Section web site lists Jones’ transfer status as “under review.”
I have no idea whether or not Jones’ transfer will go through, and if so, if he’ll have to serve the sit-out period.
But I’m interested if the transfer goes through, how things will work out between Jones and Cajon’s standout sophomore quarterback, Jayden Daniels.
A year ago, Daniels, The Sun’s Newcomer of the Year, completed 169 of 301 passes for 2,694 yards and 35 touchdowns with only 10 interceptions. That was to a largely experienced receiver crew. And when one of his top returning targets, Phillip Ryan, transferred out to Pacific, the question was, “who will Daniels throw to?”
It could be Jones, which could make for a very intriguing QB-WR combo for the next three years.
Cajon isn’t putting all of its eggs in Darren Jones’ basket. Tre’veon Wellmaker, who was second at Jurupa Hills last year in receptions (45), yards (328) and receiving touchdowns (three), has transferred in. Wellmaker, who is a senior this year, has been approved by CIF-SS to play immediately.

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Carter hires baseball, girls volleyball, girls golf, boys basketball coaches

Carter High has hired four new coaches for the upcoming school year, athletic director Kennard Kapono announced.
For fall sports, Gary Hanson has been hired as the new girls golf coach, having coached baseball at both Carter and Rialto. Fred Nash, a former head coach at Rubidoux and Arroyo Valley, is the school’s new girls volleyball coach. Gilbert Berry III, a former head coach at Yucca Valley, is the new boys basketball coach, and Joe Rosalez, is the new baseball coach.
Baseball has been the most successful of the four sports, earning a share of the Citrus Belt League title last spring, before coach Samuel Lopez left in June to be the head coach at Bonita. Lopez had led Carter to a league title three times in five seasons as a head coach and compiled a 98-40 record.
Rosalez has bounced around in recent years as an off-campus coach, but he is on-campus at Carter. He was the head coach at San Gabriel Gabrielino three years ago, then the head coach two years ago at Miller, when his team went 8-15.
He wasn’t a teacher at Miller, so last year he went to Ridgecrest Burroughs where he got his first teaching job and served as an assistant coach. He teaches health at Carter.
“In all honesty, I was enjoying my first summer as a teacher, spending time with friends and family,” Rosalez said. “But this opportunity caught my eye. It’s what I wanted.”
Rosalez said in addition to facing Carter on the field as Miller’s head coach in 2015, he also had a good experience with Carter players. Both programs were selling Christmas trees and Miller’s players had to pick up their trees from Carter.
When Rosalez and other Miller people came to Carter, the Carter players offered help to load Miller’s trees onto their trucks. And that was without anyone from either team prompting them to do so.
“That’s a testament to what these kids are like,” Rosalez said. “They offered help and that says a lot about them. I’m very big on community.”
Rosalez said he is not worried about continuing Carter’s winning baseball tradition “with the type of kid we have here and the ability level we have here.”

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Two local softball player earn MaxPreps All-American honors

Third baseman Isabel Rocco of Jurupa Hills and shortstop Julia Jimenez of Etiwanda have been named to the MaxPreps Freshman All-American softball team.


Rocco hit .586 with 11 doubles, two triples, 13 home runs, 56 RBIs and 42 runs scored in 28 games for the Spartans (20-8).

Jimenez, who has committed to University of Michigan, batted .427 with 11 doubles, three triples, 10 home runs, 47 RBIs and 36 runs scored for the Eagles (29-3), who were ranked as high as No. 2 in the country.

Here is the link to the complete list of MaxPreps selections.

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Carter baseball player Marcos Castanon commits to UCR

Junior infielder of Marcos Castanon of Carter High School has committed to UC Riverside.

Castanon was named most valuable player in the Citrus Belt League this season, helping the Lions (21-7) to a share of the league title. He batted .416 with 19 runs scored, 20 RBI, 14 doubles 2 triples and a home run.

That was the only offer he had but felt good enough about the school he didn’t want to wait to see what else might come along in the coming school year.


“If that really feels like the right place to be why wait for something else?” he said. “I like what they are building there and there are a lot of Inland Empire guys there. I love the school and the program.”

Castanon said the fact that former major league pitcher Troy Percival, himself an Inland Empire product, is heading the program was a definite factor. But he also singled out assistant Bryson LeBlanc who had been recruiting him since his freshman year.

“It isn’t just Percival, I really like the whole coaching staff,” he said.

Percival took over the program in late July of 2014. The Highlanders were 15-40 overall and 4-20 in Big West play in his first year, although he got the job late and had little chance to recruit.

UCR made great strides last season, finishing 26-29 overall and 12-12 in conference.

“I am looking forward to being part of program that is really building for the future,” he said.

Castanon plans to major in kinesiology.




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Citrus Belt League celebrates top players in baseball

Carter celebrates their win over Redlands at Redlands High School in Redlands, CA, Friday, May 13, 2016. Carter defeated Redlands 6-5 to share the Citrus Belt League title with Redlands East Valley. (Photo by Jennifer Cappuccio Maher/The Sun)

MVP: Marcos Castanon, Jr., SS, Carter

First team
Jacob Barnes, Sr., Yucaipa
Peter Brooks, Sr., Redlands
Ryan Bunse, Sr., Cajon
Michael Carpentier, Fr., Citrus Valley
Juan Castro, Sr., Miller
Isaiah Davis, Sr., Carter
Roger Fair, Jr., Carter
Gabriel Gordillo, Sr., Cajon
Justin Guizar, Sr., Redlands
Joseph Lomeli, Fr., Yucaipa
Eduardo Martinez, Sr., Carter
Tyler Van Marter, Sr., Yucaipa
Andrew Miner, Sr., Redlands East Valley
Paul Rojas, Sr., Redlands East Valley
Ryan Silva, Jr., Redlands East Valley
Anthony Villegas, Jr., Carter
Tristan Workman, Jr., Citrus Valley

Second team
Aaron Andreas, Sr., Redlands East Valley
Mason Corneliussen, Sr., Cajon
Brody Evans, Jr., Cajon
Koby Glass, Sr., Redlands
Mario Gonzalez, Jr., Miller
Isaac Humildad, Sr., Redlands East Valley
Tristen Macias, Sr., Yucaipa
Miguel Martin, Sr., Eisenhower
Fabian Muniz, Sr., Miller
Gabriel Olvera, Sr., Eisenhower
Nikolas Pagan, Sr., Redlands East Valley
Devin Oerez, Sr., Yucaipa
Joseph Rodriguez, Jr., Redlands East Valley
Chris Ruiz, Sr., Redlands
Cody Stevens, Jr., Yucaipa
Austin Warner, Jr., Citrus Valley
Justin Wear, Sr., Redlands East Valley

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