VOTES ARE IN: Charter Oak to the Hacienda, Glendora out of Baseline, Bonita avoids Baseline, South Hills stays in Sierra, Chino Hills heads to Baseline …

WALNUT — There were smiles, frowns and looks of relief at the conclusion of Monday’s Mt. SAC Area re-leaguing meeting held at Walnut Valley Unified School District headquarters.

None of the previously six and soon-to-be seven leagues in the area were immune to some type of change that will go into effect for the 2014-15 school year.

The biggest smiles belonged to Charter Oak High School, which got relief from being in the Sierra League and placed in the Hacienda League. Although the CIF-Southern Section won’t re-division for playoffs until next spring, Charter Oak likely got divisional relief on Monday, too.

“Ultimately, today what we saw was that the process worked out in the end,” said Charter Oak athletic director Dominic Farrar, whose school struggled mightily in the Sierra League in all sports but football.

“We wanted to make sure for every sport that there would be some inspiration and motivation moving forward as far as equity and fairness is concerned.”

Charter Oak is currently in its third year in the Sierra League. The Chargers have won two league championships in football, but the combined average performance of all of Charter Oak’s sports ranked them dead last in the Sierra.

Once in the Hacienda League, the Chargers’ football team will have annual games with fellow local power West Covina and former arch-rival Los Altos. Not to mention being back in a league with Diamond Ranch, which played Charter Oak in two CIF championship games in 2007 and ’08.

“Looking back as well as forward, there’s been some healthy rivalries and relationships between schools,” Farrar said. “I think everybody is excited.”

Relief was the emotion for Bonita, which under some proposals was possibly going to make a dramatic jump up to the powerful Baseline League after dominating the Hacienda League across the board for the past three years.

Instead of the Baseline, however, Bonita will be moving to the Sierra League, which got a major face lift on Monday. The league will soon be Bonita, Glendora, Diamond Bar, Chino, Claremont and South Hills.

“I think it will be a competitive situation for all of us and that’s kind of what you’re looking for,” Bonita athletic director Eric Podley said. “From our perspective, it was fair. We got a situation that is compatible for our level of competition.”

For the past three years, Glendora has lived what Bonita was trying to avoid — life in the Baseline League. The Tartans will have one more go at it next school year, but got the relief they so badly desired on Monday by being placed in the Sierra League.

“It’s a huge weight off,” Glendora principal Paul Lopez said. “We absolutely wanted to be out of the Baseline League. That was the No. 1 objective today.

“The configuration we have now, which I guess will be the Sierra League, I don’t think we could get any better than what was approved.”

Several of Glendora’s marquee sports programs had taken a hit in the Baseline League, including its famed boys basketball team. Even football, which was a force in the Sierra League prior to the move, was mostly overwhelmed in the Baseline League.

During Monday’s meeting, Lopez argued that the travel involved in playing in the Baseline League had cost his school’s teams plenty of support in recent years.

“People don’t travel anymore,” Lopez said.  “They don’t want to go out to the Inland Empire to see games. We’re on the road an average of 32.6 miles every time we go to a game. It’s a huge weight off.”

It wasn’t all smiles on Monday, especially for Chino Hills. The Huskies are on their way to the Baseline League starting with the 2014 school year. Crosstown rival Ayala is as well.

Ayala and Chino Hills will join Rancho Cucamonga, Upland, Etiwanda and Los Osos.

“I think our kids can step up to the challenge,” Chino Hills athletic director Derek Bub said. “I knew there were some scenarios that we could be placed in the Baseline. I had my hopes that people would look at transportation. That’s the biggest fear I have right now — just sitting on the 60 Freeway and 15 Freeway.

“But it is what it is, and we’ve got to move forward and get our kids ready to play in a tough league.”

The Valle Vista League will go from seven teams to six after the defection of Pomona, which now will be in a yet to be named league with Edgewood, Bassett, Ganesha, Garey and La Puente.

The Montview League was almost cut in half from its current eight-team grouping. The Montview will now be a five-team consisting of Azusa, Duarte, Gladstone, Sierra Vista and Workman. That’s because a new league was formed on Monday.

Baseline: Ayala, Chino Hills, Etiwanda, Los Osos, Rancho Cucamonga, Upland.

Sierra: Bonita, Chino, Claremont, Diamond Bar, Glendora, South Hills

Hacienda: Charter Oak, Diamond Ranch, Los Altos, Rowland, Walnut, West Covina.

Mt. Baldy: Alta Loma, Chaffey, Colony, Don Lugo, Montclair, Ontario.

Valle Vista: Baldwin Park, Covina, Nogales, Northview, San Dimas, Wilson.

Montview: Azusa, Duarte, Gladstone, Sierra Vista, Workman.

Unnamed: Edgewood, Bassett, Ganesha, Garey, La Puente, Pomona.

  • soft

    It’s funny that charter oak was begging for relief. They pound there chest like they are big and bad but they couldn’t last in the sierra let alone the inland division..Now they’ll go back to there weak league they wanna be in…Excited to see chino hills in the baseline. Now bechtel can prove why he’s one of the best coaches in the inland empire…

    • Not So Fast My Friend

      Exactly!

    • Kurt Stone

      I agree 100%. CO was supposed to have one of their best teams ever in football last year, and they were supposed to dominate cross town rival Amat, who was in a rebuilding year. Well Amat pretty much spanked CO, and made it clear that CO was not ready to compete with the big boys. Then playoffs came, and again, although CO beat the weaker IE teams, they were totally dominated when they had to play the heavy weights of the IE. CO belongs in the Sierra, and instead got a total gimme when they were laced in the Hacienda. CO is no longer a legitimate power, but rather a bully that will beat up the weaker competition in the Hacienda.

  • Football Fan

    Going to be great to see Los Altos against Charter Oak once again

  • Brahma fan

    Wow, if we ever make playoffs, we’re gonna get crushed!

    • http://www.facebook.com/ptyrone Patrick Tyrone

      we already know other teams had it out for Db! why?? not sure, but what goes around, comes around!

  • scott schumm

    Well the Sierra will certainely drop out of the Inland Division, maybe move to the Central.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mark.ramos.902819 Mark Ramos

    When CO starts dominating the Southeast and all are cheering what a dominating program they have, lets all remember they couldn’t hang in the Inland. Seems like just a couple of years ago when they were asking for their shot at the big time!! REALITY BITES!!

  • 80′s Klassik

    Hopefully they move the sierra into D5 the central division…..I think that its competitive enough divison to compete in but also gives the teams in the sierra a shot at playoffs and maybe to the big dance …..because if they stay in D2 1st round glory days is all it will be..maybe 2nd round for some teams but that’s it

  • Aaron

    Hacienda is full of people who need some cheese. If the Sierra should be moving out of the Inland…I’ll laugh if it goes into the Southeast.

  • Not So Fast My Friend

    Ayala can’t be happy.

    • OuttaYourMindTrib

      CO gets a cakewalk, Ayala gets thrown to the wolves. Seems fair. NOT!

      • Not So Fast My Friend

        lol

  • OuttaYourMindTrib

    The girls of C-NO get a pleasurable cake-walk to at least the semis.

  • D-Mo

    Aram, is RC still in the Baseline?

    • http://twitter.com/aramtolegian Aram Tolegian

      Yes, D-Mo. My bad. Good catch.

  • Lupe

    I luv the new Sierra league, some awesome match ups!

  • Valley Athletics

    Rowland was already in the hacienda . It says it was leaving the Valle vista above .

  • http://www.facebook.com/james.escarcega James Escarcega

    Ok,, I have been spouting on my twitter account (James_Escarcega) but now I feel compelled to give Aram some hits on his blog. First off, I look at the big picture. If you want the narrow picture, stick with Aram. HS sports is more than about football (and I do agree it’s the dog that wags the tail), there are great programs in basketball, baseball, track and field, wrestling, soccer, etc, etc etc…

    So using that as my base, I hope Charter Oak fans don’t take this the wrong way, but your school and principal did you wrong today. For so long, all of you CO fans would stick your chest out and say that you were the best of the best in all sports in the area. That NO one in the valley wanted to play you guys. Well after today developments, you can’t say that anymore.

    Take a look at the new premier league in the SGV, the Sierra League. You have Bonita, South Hills, Glendora, Diamond Bar, Claremont all in the same league along with IE’s Chino HS. Now that is a great league. And each school is very competitive in all sports. Who wouldn’t want to see Bonita take on Glendora is football. In basketball, fans get Claremont taking on Bonita and Glendora… And how about baseball. Holy smokes John Knott vs Kevin Smith TWICE in one season? Or how about Diamond Bar playing Glendora twice? And you want to see the best in track, the Sierra League wins hands down….

    Now let’s take a look at the Hacienda League. Good football league. Charter Oak should be able to take care of business and they will. But let’s look at the other sports…

    In boys basketball, I don’t know about you, but can’t wait to hear what happens when Walnut plays Charter Oak… Do me a favor and remind me to miss it! How about Walnut vs Charter Oak… When you think of great basketball Walnut is the first school that comes off the tongue. When it comes to basketball, ask yourself this question, what the difference between this league and the Montview League? The answer is fairly obvious… NONE!!!

    Ok, so you say let’s take a look at baseball. Well Charter Oak (which has had a great baseball tradition for the past 10 years) finished this season…..last! And two years ago… fifth! Three years ago…. fourth. That’s right, when it came to being in one of the best leagues in the SGV… they couldn’t handle it. West Covina… in the words of Chad Johnson — “Child please!”… Los Altos, Walnut, Diamond Ranch, Rowland, I wish I had a dollar for every loss that they had. So again, it begs the question, What’s the difference between this league and the Montview League?… My answer … NONE!

    Ok, you say what about Track? Ok, if the math is correct I can count on one hand the amount of athletes from this “new” Hacienda League that will be participating in the CIF Finals this weekend at Mt SAC. As a matter of fact, Charter Oak has ONE athlete running in the final this weekend (and he’s 50-1 on the board to even make it to the top-6 in the 200m in D-3).

    Meanwhile, there are a slew of athletes from the new “Sierra” League that are in contention to win a CIF title.

    Now, this is not to fault Dom Farrer (the AD at Charter Oak). He is taking the marching orders from Kathleeen Wiard. He’s just along for the ride. It’s time for Mrs Wiard to expain why where her athletic programs have fallen on hard times. And the answer that “we don’t have athletes on our campus,” is not going to work. The clear philosophy appears to be that she only cares about football and that is it.

    Charter Oak will move into the Hacienda League. And they will starting winning championships in other sports other than football. And the knowledgeable fans in the area will always put an asterisk to that because they won in the “JV Division” while schools such as South Hills, Glendora, Bonita, Diamond Bar are playing in the varsity Division in the Sierra League.

    If that is the legacy that Mrs. Wiard wants in her time as principal at Charter Oak… All I can say is thank god I worked for a principal that demanded the best of the coaches on the field and the teachers in the classroom in Judi North.

    Congrats CO fans, good luck in the JV Division. Too bad no one will be watching!

    • 90′s Spartan

      When you were at South Hills, the Huskies played in what you now call “the JV Division.” Is that what you call demanding the best?

      • http://www.facebook.com/james.escarcega James Escarcega

        I beg to differ… The San Antonio League was not the Sierra League, but it was competitive!

        • 90′s Spartan

          CO’s new league is WC, Walnut, Rowland, DR, and LA

          SH’s league was WC, Walnut, Rowland, Nogales

          Actually looks like CO’s new league is harder with LA and DR instead of Nogales.

          Either way, is that Judi North “demanding the best?”

          • http://www.facebook.com/james.escarcega James Escarcega

            Do yourself a favor and compare the Sierra League to the Hacidenda League… If you don’t see there is a difference in the two leagues…. well – never mind!!

          • 90′s Spartan

            How about you do yourself a favor and stay on topic.

            I’m not saying that the new Hacienda is better than the Sierra. It’s not.
            I am saying that your opinion is ridiculous and you are a fool. On one hand you tee off on CO’s principal for letting her school move into a “JV division.” In the very next breath, you literally thank God for SH’s principal for “demanding the best.” Meanwhile, the two schools were both in nearly identical leagues, as I pointed out. That is a double standard, which is absurd by nature and worthy of ridicule.

    • http://twitter.com/aramtolegian Aram Tolegian

      Classic. But one thing, James. I’m having no problem in the hits dept.

    • Steve Ramirez

      Charter Oak, Diamond Ranch, Los Altos, Rowland, Walnut, West Covina.
      Actually James, this would be a very competitive league, and not to put down the Montview League, but slightly above, talentwise. As we look at the mainstream sports across the board, it’s very balanced. Let’s take a look: Girls volleyball – Los Altos will be the team to beat, but Charter Oak and Walnut have been decent in the past five years to be competitive. Boys basketball — It’s a Rowland, Walnut and Diamond Ranch league, with Charter Oak and West Covina bringing up the rear. Girls basketball — Diamond Ranch, if they don’t get hurt by the loss of Mike James, is the team to beat, but Walnut has looked good in recent years and Charter Oak was decent this past year. Baseball — It’s a two-team race between Los Altos and Charter Oak. West Covina best chance for third and Walnut and Rowland have to improve a bunch. Softball — It’s Charter Oak’s league, with West Covina, Los Altos battling for third.
      Overall, it’s a very balanced league in the non-football sports, and it will likely be very competitive to the new Sierra

      • Valley Athletics

        2014 walnut will be decent in baseball .there freshman and sophmore class has good talent this year . If no one transfers out they will be in the mix for cif now that bonita and diamond bar is gone . 2 players that transfered out last 2 years would of made them a playoff team . Kolbi oriti at northview and Aaron pinto at St. Paul .

      • http://www.facebook.com/james.escarcega James Escarcega

        Steve — You have some decent points in the girls sports. But that where it stops for me. In boys hoops, take any of those teams and put them in the Sierra League, they’ll finish in last or next to last. In baseball, these teams couldn’t handle the grind of the Sierra League. You can argue that the new Sierra League in baseball in one of the best leagues in Southern California. I saw a lot of HS baseball this year (as well as you) and the teams in the new Hacienda League couldn’t handle the teams from the Sierra League. Sorry, you won’t find me at many Hacienda League games in the winter and spring in 2014. You can have them big guy!!!

        • http://twitter.com/aramtolegian Aram Tolegian

          Jimmy, if it’s not football, then I need to see something spectacular to really get fired up. So for hoops, I need to see top teams against each other. Same with bases or even soccer. I don’t care which league it comes from. But all that really matters is football. You want more proof? Go on Fred’s blog and look at the two spectacular posts he put up about baseball and softball pairings. Not ONE comment. Why? Because nobody cares. If that was football pairings, it would be littered with comments. It’s just how it is — we’re a football society.

          • http://www.facebook.com/james.escarcega James Escarcega

            Valid points… You don’t get an argument from me!

          • SGV_FOOTBALL

            James your whole argument goes out the window when the Sierra gets moved to the Southeast. You know it will happen.

          • Jimmy the Greek

            Aram, If it’s all about football then how could you possibly champion the idea of CO needing to be moved down to the Hacienda? playoff appearances 3 straight years, Sierra League Champs 2 years in a row = 2 out of 3 years, CIF 2nd round appearance 2 years in a row.

          • robby

            obviously. you couldnt even look to any other info about CO and find the other league champions in wrestling. Why is it that newspaper reporters are often the worst to “report” or do any research?

        • Steve Ramirez

          You looking at it from the past year, This things go in cycles, Charter Oak is slightly down, but history tells us its too much of a baseball area to be down long. And Rowland could definitely hang with those teams in basketball, and in in some years, could possibly win the league. It’s not as cut and try as you think. But its about across the board, and the Hacienda and Sierra, from the girls perspective, would be quite balanced and equal.

    • robby

      with 7 athletes in finals for league in wrestling, 10 going to CIF 5 going to masters, I think CO has a lot of athletes, maybe they are just going out for football and wrestling!

  • Carlos

    This is crazy, South Hills does not belong in the Sierra League! They can’t even beat Charger Oak!

  • Valley Athletics

    The branding iron game will have to be scheduled for preseason .

  • Bonita Boy

    I hope someone looks into the Pucci move to Rancho debacle…3 HSs in 3 years? Three young, talented, hard working, non-Prima Donna kids were excited to compete this year for QB…then the Pucci Machine arrives with lots of cash and hypocrisy….

  • Bonita Boy

    Can someone confirm that Pucci was going to leave Damien last year since he blamed his OL for his 17 pics?….then he got wind of Friederichsen moving to Rancho….so he stayed another year at Damien….what am I missing?

  • bossman

    Sierra might be the best baseball league in Southern California now.

    • http://www.facebook.com/james.escarcega James Escarcega

      As much as I like the Sierra League, it has a long way to go to catch up with the Trinity and Mission Leagues… please keep it real!

  • Not So Fast My Friend

    I can imagine how intense some of these games are going to be in the Baseline between Ayala, Chino Hills, Los Osos, Rancho Cucamonga, Etiwanda, and Upland. Advantage: Toss Up betwen Upland, RC and Chino Hills. Disadvantage: Ayala (good, but not great), Los Osos (new coaching staff) and Etiwanda (where all the talent go?)

    Even more, the new Sierra should be interesting. I’m sure folks at Colony are going to miss the annual Chino rivalry. But Bonita, Chino, Claremont, DBar, Glendora and South Hills will be the most interesting. Advantage: Toss Up for everyone.

    If Charter Oak maintains it’s position, I’m expecting them to pretty much handle the Hacienda.

    Alta Loma gets relief from it’s weekly pounding in the Baseline to powder-puff it’s way around with Chaffey, Don Lugo, Montclair, Ontario and a de-fanged Colony. Advantage: Between Alta Loma and Don Lugo. Disadvantage: Everyone else playing for next season.

    I don’t know too much about the remaining conferences or the schools to speak on that.

  • Curious George

    Can somebody tell me where this leaves Damien High School?

  • robby

    “…Charter Oak athletic director Dominic Farrar, whose school struggled mightily in the Sierra League in all sports but football….The Chargers have won two league championships in football, but the combined average performance of all of Charter Oak’s sports ranked them dead last in the Sierra.”

    Great homework aram, Charter Oak also league titles in Wrestling both JV and Varsity. School HAS been struggling but Football and Wrestling were having great success.

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