Win a CIF title and financial troubles for a high school football team are over?
At Jurupa Hills, after winning the CIF-SS East Valley Division championship, the problem now is championship rings. Not all the players can afford their championship rings so coach Ed McMillon is seeking donations from the community. Click here to view Jurupa Hills’ fundraising video, with a chance to donate.
Congratulations to Jurupa Hills for winning the CIF-SS East Valley Division football title on Saturday night with a 41-24 win over San Juan Capistrano St. Margaret’s.
It was amazing that the Spartans did it in just their fourth year of varsity competition and the first senior class that spent their entire careers at Jurupa Hills.
It was clear from the beginning that even though Jurupa Hills wasn’t finishing drives, the Spartans weren’t going to have trouble moving the ball and they could do it either running or passing. They finished with 314 rushing yards and 225 passing. Jurupa Hills was bigger, faster and deeper.
After scoring 21 unanswered points in the first half to take a 24-7 halftime lead, the key moments in the third quarter resulted in defensive stands. Two turnovers resulted in two field goal attempts and only one made, and it was still 24-10.
St. Margaret’s couldn’t cover Kourde Roberts. I had Roberts with 14 receptions for 168 yards and a touchdown. “We made up our minds that if they were playing off us, we would take short. Then if they came up on us, we would take them deep,” coach Ed McMillon said. Most of the passes were short, but many of those short passes became long gains.
With the game in hand, McMillon had some heartwarming moments. He has several girls on his roster (at least 3 on the varsity, but several others suited up Saturday). In the waning moments, he got several of them into the game, including senior Karen Gramajo, who successfully made the last extra-point attempt of the night. It was his chance to give them a chance at the spotlight.
Although we don’t know what leagues will be in which divisions next year, this is likely Jurupa Hills’ last year in the division. The Spartans will go into the San Andreas League (currently in the Eastern Division) next year. “I don’t know what it’s going to be like, but people are going to be expecting us to lose again,” junior Christian Steele said. Jurupa Hills will be good, but how good? “We have a lot of good juniors,” McMillon said. “But we’re going to have to find guys to replace those seniors.”
BOX SCORE St. Margaret’s 7 0 3 14 — 24 Jurupa Hills 3 21 7 10 — 41
JH — FG Oscar Medina 38
SM — Josh Davis 2 run (Charlie Beall kick)
JH — D.J. Wright 7 run (Medina kick)
JH — Wright 1 run (Medina kick)
JH — Wright 5 run (Medina kick)
SM — FG Beall 45
JH — De’Andre Henderson 8 run (Medina kick)
SM — Davis 3 run (Beall kick)
JH — FG Medina 26
JH — Kourde Roberts 29 pass from Wright (Karen Gramajo kick)
SM — Oscar Gomez 16 run (Beall kick)
There were a few things I wanted to mention, following up from Friday night’s Jurupa Hills 31-21 victory over Rim of the World in a Mountain Valley League showdown.
At the least, it should move No. 3 Jurupa Hills past No. 2 Rim in the East Valley Division rankings.
The size of the crowd there was a little disappointing to me, although it was not homecoming, nor was it senior night. Perhaps as the newest school in town, Jurupa Hills has trouble growing a fan base especially with perennial power Kaiser also in South Fontana. I understand why coach Ed McMillon is trying to convince people in the community to watch his team play. They are exciting and good and they should get some more support.
Jurupa Hills had a ridiculous number of penalties, which will need to be corrected if the Spartans want to win a CIF title. By my count, Jurupa Hills had 15 penalties for 140 yards. Rim? They had just three for 20 yards.
Jurupa Hills’ defense was very impressive, including senior linebacker Deshire Singleton, as well as Nick Navarro, who had his second pick-6 in the last two weeks (a fact I failed to mention in the story). When you hold Rim to 225 yards rushing on 51 carries as a team and intercept them 3 times, you’re doing something right.
The Jurupa Hills offense stagnated at times, but then showed the ability to break open at any given time.
One thing I did mention in the story, but bears repeating: Neither of these teams won league last year, but both made at least the CIF-SS semifinals. Rim could still make a playoff run like it did despite losing twice in league last year.
Can these teams face each other again? It’s possible. But if Jurupa Hills wins out, they will get the No. 2 seed (assuming No. 1 St. Margaret’s wins out). If, as a result, Rim gets the league’s second entry into the playoffs, Rim would have to be on the other half of the bracket from Jurupa Hills and could be no better than a 4 seed. Last year, there were two Mountain Valley League rematches in the playoffs: and both times the team that lost in league, won in the playoffs: Jurupa Hills beating Citrus Valley in the second round, and Rim beating Banning in the semifinals.
Jurupa Hills held its second annual community day on Friday, but after Saturday, coach Ed McMillon said he might move the day. Why?
While there was some response again, with two school board members, Lorena Corona and Shannon O’Brien arriving to take pictures with players. Parents also arrived to take pictures with players on the field.
It was the team’s picture day, so it worked out well that the players were already in their uniforms. But team pictures ended early, and some of the players scattered by the time parents and community members arrived.
But on Saturday, for the team’s intrasquad scrimmage, McMillon was surprised.
2013 ALL-MOUNTAIN VALLEY LEAGUE SOFTBALL Coaches of the Year: Scott Cartzdafner (Jurupa Hills), April Finazzo (Citrus Valley), Maso Lara (Banning)
Offensive MVP: Natalie Calderas, Jurupa Hills 11 P Defensive MVP: Chandler Geary, Citrus Valley 12 C
Kailey Richard-Citrus Valley 11 INF
Brianna Chairez-Citrus Valley 12 INF
Taylor Troost-Citrus Valley 10 P
Ilene Villanueva-Jurupa Hills 9 INF
Isabel Villanueva-Jurupa Hills 10 INF
Felicity McCafferty-Banning 12 OF
Andrea Villegas-Banning 12 INF
Stephanie Sandoval-Rubidoux 11 INF
Brenna Drake-Rubidoux 12 INF
Amy Ayotte-Rim of the World 11 INF/P
Jamie Garner-Rim of the World 12 C
Haley Young-Notre Dame 11 INF 3
Jurupa Hills coach Scott Cartzdafner said he was “more than positive” his team would see Citrus Valley in the CIF-SS Division 5 championship game in three weeks.
He said that after his team lost to defending Division 6 champ Citrus Valley 2-1 in the bottom of the seventh to give Citrus Valley the Mountain Valley League title on Thursday. That was two days after Jurupa Hills knocked off Citrus Valley 3-2 on a walk-off two-run homer.
Citrus Valley is ranked No. 1 in the division and a favorite to get back to the CIF-SS title game. But what about Jurupa Hills? The Spartans were ranked fifth entering this week.
A year ago, Citrus Valley won its final 21 games en route to the CIF title. In the final 20 of those games, 2 of the 3 closest games were 3-2 and 4-1 wins over Jurupa Hills. The 4-1 win came in the CIF semifinals. Jurupa Hills might’ve been the second-best team in the division last year, but because the Spartans tied for 2nd in league and went into the playoffs as the No. 3 team, they could end up on the same side of the bracket as Citrus Valley, hence meet in the semifinals.
This year, since Jurupa HIlls is the No. 2 team in the league, the Spartans will be on the opposite half of the bracket from No. 1 Citrus Valley. So they could meet in the finals. But will they?
Jurupa Hills’ Jackie Valadez hits the first pitch she sees for a walk-off two-run home run with two outs in the seventh inning to lift the Spartans to a 3-2 victory over Citrus Valley in a Mountain Valley League showdown on Tuesday. The teams are now tied for first place with one game remaining. They play again on Thursday to decide the league title.