East is back on top in SGV All-Star series

After a two-year break, the East is back on top in the SGV All-Star Game.

Damien wide receiver Josh Bryan caught two long touchdown passes and the East defense came up with a big stop late to preserves a 24-21 win in the 39th installment of the game on Friday night as West Covina High.

“I was just glad to see us get a win,” Bryan said. “It was just a comeback (in the series). It’s what we needed to get the East side going to make sure we get more players out here next year and keep it going. It’s a blessing.”

Bryan caught a 55-yard touchdown pass from Chino Hills quarterback Austin Zavala on the East’s first possession of the second half. The East later made it 24-14 on a short field goal by Bonita kicker a Garrett Dean.

The West answered on its next possession and got to within three on a touchdown pass from St. Francis quarterback Michael Bonds to Arcadia receiver Raeshawn Roland with 10:45 left to play in the fourth quarter.

It appeared the East was set to run out the clock during a long drive on the ensuing possession but a mishandled hand-off resulted in a fumble that the West recovered at its own 16 with 2:48 left to play.

The West made its way into East territory, but went no further than the 45 and was stopped on downs after El Rancho quarterback Adam Chandler’s pass was deflected away on fourth-and-long with 1:15 left. Chandler was later named West team MVP. Lineman MVP honors went to the East’s Hugo Esqueda of Upland.

Bryan started the scoring with a 56-yard touchdown reception from Montclair quarterback Andrew Harrison. The East’s next possession saw some nifty runs by Northview’s Kevin Thomas set up a 1-yard touchdown run by San Dimas’ Jarrel Sykes to make it 14-0.

The West broke through for its first score on a 50-yard touchdown from Bonds to La Salle’s Amon Milliner, who took a short pass the distance to make it 14-7. Chandler later scored on a 1-yard touchdown run to make it 14-14 at halftime.

The East improved its overall series edge to 24-13-2. The East had won seven consecutive games prior to the 2015 game when the West won the first of back-to-back games in the series.

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Coaching search updates ….

LA MIRADA — This one is kinda interesting. In an article published by this organization back on Jan. 10, the school said it was conducting interviews that week and would likely name a coach the following week (last week). Came and went. Now, word is the school is back to the application phase. How did this happen? Turns out the district wanted to involved and asked the school to re-fly the position. It closes today (Jan. 25). No interviews have been conducted yet. They’re expected to happen next week. No word on how many applicants.
RANDOM THOUGHT: I hope the next coach realizes he is inheriting a program that’s likely headed from D-3 to D-2, maybe D-1.

LOS ALTOS — As I tweeted (@aramtolegian) earlier Jan. 25, the school is set to finish first-round interviews this week and will have another round next week. Word I got from a Los Altos insider is there’s not as much as interest in the job as one might think because there is no teaching position (right now) with the gig.

EL MONTE, TEMPLE CITY, WEST COVINA — I got nothing. This is where you come in.

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BREAKING: Three-time CIF championship coach Mike Maggiore resigns from West Covina

maggioreLongtime West Covina High School football coach Mike Maggiore announced his resignation Wednesday after 21 seasons at the school.

Maggiore guided West Covina to six league championships and three CIF championships during his time and always had the Bulldogs among the top teams in the area. But family duty calls and so he told the team of his decision on Tuesday.

“I feel like I’ve been on a treadmill and I just want to get off the treadmill and take a breath,” Maggiore said. “I’d like to say there’s something cool I’m going to be doing, like hunting. But I don’t have any plans. I just want to spend a little time with my son.”

Maggiore becomes the latest head coach to depart one of the area’s more successful programs this offseason. Earlier, La Mirada’s Mike Moschetti and Los Altos’ Dale Ziola stepped down after leading their teams to CIF championship games.

Maggiore grew up locally and was a standout football and swimmer at Edgewood High before graduating in 1985 and playing football at Oregon St. Soon after returning home following college, he was an assistant coach at West Covina before taking over the head job.

The Bulldogs won CIF championships in 2004, 2010 and 2011. The 2011 team won it’s CIF championship game over La Serna by a record score of 84-21. But those championship moments aren’t what Maggiore would call the highlights of his career.

“My favorite accomplishments are the relationships I built off the field,” he said. “When former players come back and visit and they’re doing great things. On the field, I’m proud of the fact we were competitive every year.”

Maggiore said he will return to coaching at some point and will be available to help to whoever is named his successor. Maggiore plans to remain a teacher at the school. Whether his return some day is as a head coach or as an assistant remains to be seen. But his junior-high aged son will attend West Covina when he reaches high school age.

“In 21 years of doing it, there’s been a lot of changes,” Maggiore said. “It’s a year-round thing now. I always thought if I didn’t have the energy, it’s time to get out. I know I’m going to miss it, but I think it’s a good time.”

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Way too early SGV(N) Top 25 for 2017 …

Yes, I know, it’s January. But I couldn’t resist. We’re humans. We need a guideline.

1. Bishop Amat — Leading passer, rusher and Big Aaron all return.
2. Damien — Surprised? Don’t be. QB Warren Bryan is back.
3. La Habra — QB Fogel is a nice piece to build around.
4. Charter Oak — A QB needs to fall out of a tree.
5. La Mirada — More questions than answers at this point.
6. La Serna — Hit hard by graduation. But it’s the system, stupid.
7. St. Francis — Could be changing offensive identity a bit.
8. Arcadia — Some of the best skill talent around.
9. Glendora — QB Wooldridge plus some key linemen are back.
10. South Hills — You gotta keep an eye on Bechtel.
11. Northview — QB Comstock needs a supporting cast.
12. Arroyo — QB and RB are both back … scary still.
13. La Salle — Could be some reinforcements on the way.
14. St. Paul — Program is going the right direction.
15. West Covina — Always solid, but lots to replace.
16. San Marino — QB along with some key skill players are back.
17. Monrovia — Can ‘Cats still simply reload?
18. San Dimas — Saints just do what they do.
19. Covina — Could be quite the sleeper with Burns at QB.
20. Bonita — Talented soph class took their lumps in ’16.
21. Diamond Ranch — Expecting The Martinez Effect to take effect.
22. South El Monte — RB Tovar is back. That’s all you need to know.
23. Montebello — QB Tapia is back but there’s lots to replace.
24. Los Altos — Storied senior class has to be replaced.
25. Duarte — QB Hemsley is back for Montview champs.

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