Column: CIF tweaks playoffs again

It’s time to scratch your head again, because the CIF-Southern
Section tweaked the boys and girls basketball playoffs in the first
of another two-year trial run. For many years the Southern Section playoff divisions were
organized by enrollment, which brought its share of problems.
Remember a few years back when Keppel had one of its best boys teams
ever, only to run into the unfair challenge of having to face Mater
Dei early in the playoffs because their enrollment numbers were
similar? There were many other cases like that, too.
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Final regular season rankings


1. Diamond Ranch (22-4)
2. Nogales (21-7)
3. Northview (21-6)
4. Bonita (22-5)
5. Glendora (21-7)
6. Workman (19-5)
7. Bishop Amat (17-9)
8. Charter Oak (18-9)
9. Diamond Bar (16-12)
10. Damien (16-11)

1. Diamond Ranch (21-4)
2. Bishop Amat (20-5)
3. Sierra Vista (21-3)
4. Bonita (17-9)
5. South Hills (17-7)
6. Walnut (16-8)
7. West Covina (15-9)
8. Northview (17-9)
9. San Dimas (14-11)
10. Covina (16-9)

1. Baldwin Park (21-1)
2. Sierra Vista (18-2-2)
3. Mountain View (16-4-4)
4. Los Altos (11-4-3)
5. Wilson (17-4-2)
6. Bishop Amat (14-5-4)
7. Rosemead
8. West Covina (14-4-3)
9. South Hills (12-4-3)
10. Diamond Ranch (13-5-3)

1. St. Lucy’s (15-3-4)
2. Walnut (14-5-2)
3. Bishop Amat (17-2-4)
4. Glendora (15-9-3)
5. South Hills (14-8-1)
6. Los Altos (15-7-3)
7. Diamond Ranch (11-7-4)
8. San Dimas (17-4-4)
9. South El Monte (12-4-1)
10. Charter Oak (15-7-3)

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A-11 offense banned; horse-collar tackle penalized in many NFHS rule changes

This from Yahoo Sports: “Sad news to end the week: Everyone’s favorite crazy gimmick offense, the “All-11,” was effectively declared illegal today by the far-reaching National Federation of State High School Associations, which closed the “scrimmage kick” loophole the A-11 exploited for its existence,” reports Yahoo Sports and

To read about the horse-collar tackle being penalized and other rule changes from the NFHS, click on the thread to read the associated press story from Indianapolis

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Soccer pairings released

The CIF-SS boys and girls soccer pairings will be released this afternoon. I’ll post the first-round match-ups as soon as they’re released. But don’t wait for me, click this link to access all the brackets

Friday’s first round
Division II
Damien (11-9-3) at Palmdale (16-7-2)
Diamond Bar (12-8-3) at Arlington (16-3-7)
Division III
Rowland (10-11-4) at Jurupa Valley (14-4-7)
South Hills (12-4-3) at Santa Maria (19-5-1)
Redlands (15-4-8) at West Covina (14-4-3)
Division IV
Diamond Ranch (14-5-3) at University (8-6-2)
La Puente (12-5-5) at Bishop Amat (15-5-3)
Wilson (16-5-2) at Inglewood (10-9-4)
Mayfair (9-14-1) at Los Altos (11-4-3)
Laguna Hills (7-11-2) at Sierra Vista (18-1-2)
Division V
Pioneer Valley (13-10-1) at Baldwin Park (21-1)
Division VI
Tahquitz (12-8-3) at Mountain View (16-4-4)
Beaumont (DNR) at Rosemead (13-4-4)
Arroyo (4-11-4) at Dunn (10-5-2)
Division VII
Desert Christian (8-7-4) at La Verne Lutheran (10-2-1)
Note: All games start at 3 p.m.; and records provided by CIF

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CIF-SS Hoops Pairings released

For a complete look at the CIF-Southern Section boys and girls basketball pairings, click the link. On Monday, CIF will release the boys and girls soccer and girls water polo pairings. For all the first-round matchups with records, I’ve listed them below.

CIF-SS playoffs
Boys Basketball
Wednesday’s First Round
Div. I-AA

Diamond Bar (14-11) at No. 7 Colony (21-6)
Div. II-AA
Walnut (17-9) at Buena (9-16)
Ontario (12-9) at No. 3 Glendora (21-7)
Div. II-A
No. 13 Damien (14-11) at Baldwin Park (16-8)
Rowland (12-15) at No. 11 Sunny Hills (17-11)
San Marcos (12-13) at No. 4 Nogales (21-7)
Norwalk (13-11) at No. 13 South Hills (17-7)
Div. III-A
Magnolia (7-19) at No. 1 Diamond Ranch (18-3)
Sierra Vista (14-11) at Palm Desert (18-8)
Mountain View (16-10) at Twentynine Palms (16-7)
Corona del Mar (13-13) at No. 8 Bonita (22-5)
No. 10 Charter Oak (18-9) at Segerstrom (14-11)
Div. IV-AA
Burroughs (10-14) at No. 5 Northview (21-6)
No. 12 Citrus Hill (15-9) at La Puente (9-10)
No. 13 JSerra (10-14) at Rosemead (11-14)
Wilson (7-17) at No. 6 San Luis Obispo (18-6)
No. 10 Bishop Amat (17-9) at San Dimas (13-15)
Gladstone (5-18) at No. 8 Compton Centennial (14-11)
Covina (8-18) at No. 15 South El Monte (16-9)
Div. IV-A
Sherman Oaks Notre Dame (9-18) at No. 10 Workman (19-5)
Div. V-A
Hamilton (13-13) at La Verne Lutheran (20-6)
Note: All games start at 7:30 p.m.

CIF-SS playoffs
Girls Basketball
Thursday’s First Round
Div. I-AA

Diamond Bar (12-13) at No. 5 Etiwanda (19-7)
Div. I-A
Fountain Valley (11-14) at No. 16 Walnut (17-8)
West Covina (15-10) at No. 15 Crescenta Valley (19-8)
Div. II-AA
Glendora (13-14) at No. 6 Newbury Park (20-5)
Arroyo (13-13) at No. 7 Bishop Amat (20-5).
Rowland (9-17) at No. 16 Fullerton (14-11)
No. 4 Diamond Ranch (18-4), bye
Los Altos (8-17) at No. 15 South Hills (17-7)
Div. III-A
No. 9 Sierra Vista (20-3), bye
Wilson (10-16) at No. 6 Sonora (15-10)
Beckman (3-20) at No. 12 Bonita (17-9)
Charter Oak (7-19) at Rosemead (12-10)
Div. IV-AA
Covina (16-9) at No. 16 Banning (16-10)
No. 13 Calabasas (14-10) at San Dimas (14-11)
No. 11 Whittier Christian (17-8) at El Monte (14-9)
No. 10 Atascadero (14-18) at Azusa (14-10)
St. Lucy’s (11-11) at No. 15 Northview (17-9)
Div. IV-A
Duarte (6-13) at No. 4 Harvard-Westlake (16-9)
Blair (10-17) at Workman (7-13)
Div. V-AA
Western Christian (12-12) at No. 7 La Salle (14-10)
Div. VI-AA
La Verne Lutheran (4-12) at No. 11 LA Adventist (12-5)
Note: All games start at 7:30 p.m

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It’s official, Vasquez out at Damien

Damien Principal and Father Patrick Travers has confirmed that baseball coach Rich Vasquez is no longer in charge just weeks from opening day on March 5. Travers said Vasquez and the school came to a mutual agreement, adding “that’s all we’re saying at the moment.” Vasquez led the Spartans to a 17-9 record in 2008, finishing second in the difficult Sierra League and losing in the first round of the CIF-SS playoffs. Vasquez has not returned several calls seeking comment. Travers said the school will begin an immediate search, with some suggesting the Spartans could bring back former coach Bobby Sheridan, who coached six years at Damien.

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CIF: Wrestling dual titles on Saturday

Before you read Stevie’s R’s advance of tomorrow’s team duals, please explain why some teams don’t send their best wrestlers to dual meet championships? I don’t know if it’s the case this season, but it’s happened in the past. If the best high school teams don’t send their best wrestlers, then why have dual meet team team championships? I know the argument, that the best individuals have to rest for CIF prelims the following week, but what happened to sucking it up and winning one for the team, especially for that kid who works just as hard, but isn’t going anywhere individually, but could do enough to help his team win a CIF team titloe, if only his best teammates were along for the ride. I grew up enjoying the duals, and think there isn’t enough emphasis placed on them anymore.

Above: Our salute to late Rosemead coach Lou Madrigal. May you rest in peace Big Fella.

By Steve Ramirez
South Hills, Northview, Bishop Amat and Sierra Vista high schools were awarded top four seeds when the CIF-Southern Section released its pairings Thursday for Saturday’s Toyota Dual Meet championships.
The division tournaments will be held at six campus sites. First-round matches begin at 11 a.m., with the finals scheduled for 7 p.m.
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Column: Will baseball season hurry up

Fasten your seat belts – the CIF-Southern Section’s winter playoffs are around the corner. The section office will release boys and girls basketball pairings Sunday, then follow with boys and girls soccer and girls water polo pairings on Monday.
But the general feeling I’m getting around the Valley is that everyone is waiting for the baseball season to begin March 5. And why not, because baseball is where our Valley shines.
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Coach of the year choices not easy

The sixth annual Tribune/Star-News boys and girls all-star basketball game is set for April 4 at Azusa Pacific University, and who coaches the games usually depends on who earns coach of the year honors. We were talking about coaches of the year for all winter sports, and it created quite a discussion. There are no knockdown easy choices. With the playoffs nearing, here are a few of the candidates. Again, this is just a sample, who knows what happens in the playoffs.

Above: Northview girls basketball coach Jeff Butler deserves recognition for leading the Vikes to a 40-36 win over rival Covina, ending the Colts’ long hold on the Valle Vista league.
Boys Basketball
Ricky Roper, Nogales
Loren Grover, Diamond Ranch
Ron Rice, Northview
Martin Flores, Workman
JT Cameron, Diamond Bar
Girls Basketball
Jeff Butler, Northview
Keith Locklear, Sierra Vista
Lori Huckler, Walnut
Michael James, Diamond Ranch
Chris Morrison, Bishop Amat
Boys Soccer
Ricardo Mira, Baldwin Park
Jeff Hess, Los Altos
Jose Rodriguez, Sierra Vista
Felipe Corona, Mountain View
Juan Rodriguez, Bishop Amat
Girls Soccer
Rob Rodrigues, St. Lucy’s
Lorraine Hansen, Walnut
Chris Reeer, Los Altos
Ruben Gonzales, Bishop Amat
Kelly Kocalis, San Dimas

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It’s that dreaded day

Play at your own risk: Now I know why virtually every league finished on Thursday instead of today. Not the Mission Valley League, they’re playing, South El Monte and Rosemead for the boys basketball title tonight at Rosemead, 6:30 p.m…….

I say if you know anyone name Jason, like the Celtics dude in our office, avoid them at all costs.

Yahoo says you should avoid these things today.
A black cat crossing your path
Spilling salt
Breaking a mirror
Walking under ladders
Putting a hat on the bed
Taking off your wedding ring
Seeing an owl during the day
Opening an umbrella indoors
Killing a cricket
Putting your left foot on the floor first up when you get out of bed
Putting shoes on a table

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Could recession mean fewer games?

I found this interesting item in the Daily Breeze prep blog, run by prep writer Tony Ciniglio. First, this is another great high school blog at one of our sister papers, and its building steam. Hopefully we can have some tongue and cheek chatter with them during crossover games this fall. You can also follow our blog on twitter, which has helped our numbers increase. But for now, here’s a story Ciniglio had on his blog from the associated press, which calls for shorter high school season’s in New York because of the economy. I was talking with Arroyo girls basketball coach Mike Gorball about it this morning. He says they might be asked to player fewer games next season, so it looks like it’s already starting to take effect around here. This is something we need to pay close attention to, so if you hear anything along these lines, we’d love to hear about it.

Please don’t cut our games: Okay, so I’m having a little fun, but I love the picture, which goes to show these girls leave it all on the line.

This story comes from The Associated Press in Albany, N.Y.
Here’s a new play call courtesy of the recession: shorter seasons for high school athletes. The group that oversees public high school athletics in New York state recently
approved shaved-down schedules next school year as a cost-cutting measure, the
latest to take the step nationwide. Cuts vary by sport in New York: Baseball teams that play 24 regular-season games will go to 20, football teams will go from 10 games to 9 or 8, depending on regional officials.
The New York State Public High School Athletic Association says the shorter
schedules allow schools to cut budgets without cutting programs. Critics — including
coaches and kids — claim the new policy unfairly targets student athletes.

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Soccer thread: Los Altos wins, 2-1

After forfeiting a game because of an ineligible player to fall out of first place, Los Altos was forced to win the Miramonte League boys soccer title the hard way, going through rival Wilson
and securing a 2-1 victory behind first-half goals from Alan De La Rosa and
Kevin Martinez. Wilson tried to come back in the final minutes, getting a 76th minute
goal from Gary Quintero, but their rally fell short.
When Los Altos beat Wilson 3-2 in their first meeting, Martinez was sent off with a double-yellow red card, but played in their next game against Bonita, a Conquerors’ victory. Players must sit out their next games after red cards, but Conquerors coach Jeff Hess was under the impression Martinez could play because he received a double-yellow instead of a straight red card.
Hess was wrong, Wilson officials called him on it, and they had to forfeit, adding fuel to an already intense rivalry. That made winning Thursday’s Miramonte League title even more
meaningful for the Conquerors, who improved to 12-5-3 and 5-1-2. Los Altos (17-5-2, 5-3), needing just a tie to win the league title, finished in second.
“We’re the only team in league that hasn’t lost a game on the field,” Hess said. “We deserved this win, we won it on the field. This is my first league title in five years as the head coach. Last year we won our first CIF game in school history, and this is just our second league title ever, so I couldn’t be more prouder.”

Above: Wilson’s Mira Valdez couldn’t stop Los Altos from winning again, 2-1, to secure the Miramonte League title.

To get results into the newspaper, call 626-962-8811, Ext. 2233, 2242 or email to If you email, make sure to leave a contact number in case one of our reporters has questions. Also, we do not have reporters at every game like football, so the scoreboard is tough to update. If you’re at a game, please come back and post the final score in the comments section, thanks.

Boys Soccer schedule
Miramonte League

Los Altos at Wilson, 3:15 p.m.
Bonita at Charter Oak, 3:15 p.m.
Mission Valley League
Mountain View at El Monte, 3:15 p.m.
Arroyo at Gabrielino, 3:15 p.m.
Montview League
Sierra Vista at Gladstone, 5 p.m.
Duarte at La Puente, 3:15 p.m.
Bassett at Azusa, 3:15 p.m.
San Antonio League
West Covina vs. South Hills at CDF, 5 p.m.
Rowland at Walnut, 3:15 p.m.
Sierra League
Chino Hills at Glendora, 3:15 p.m.
Valle Vista
Ganesha at San Dimas, 3:15 p.m.
Northview at Pomona, 3:15 p.m.
Baldwin Park at Covina, 3:15 p.m.

Girls Soccer
Miramonte League
Wilson at Los Altos, 3:15 p.m.
Charter Oak at Bonita, 3:15 p.m.
Mission Valley League
El Monte at Mountain View, 3:15 p.m.
Gabrielino at Arroyo, 3:15 p.m.
Montview League
Gladstone at Sierra Vista, 3:15 p.m.
La Puente at Duarte, 3:15 p.m.
Azusa at Bassett 3:15 p.m.
San Antonio League
South Hills at West Covina, 5 p.m.
Walnut at Rowland, 3:15 p.m.
Valle Vista
San Dimas at Ganesha, 3:15 p.m.
Pomona at Northview, 3:15 p.m.
Covina at Baldwin Park, 3:15 p.m.

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Hoops Thread: DRanch by a nose, 62-60

The Diamond Ranch boys basketball proved again it deserves the area’s top ranking, but Nogales isn’t that far behind. In a hotly contested non-league game between two league champions just before the CIF-Southern Section pairings are announced Sunday, the Division III-A’s top-ranked Panthers overcame an 11-point halftime deficit to defeat host Nogales, 62-60, on Thursday night.
Nogales had the ball last and opted to go for the game winner, but Randal Guillory’s desperate three-point attempt at the buzzer was short, giving the Panthers (22-4) a season sweep over the Div. III-AA’s fourth-ranked Nobles (22-6). “They’re a heck of team, especially in their building,” Panthers coach Loren Grover said. “We knew they were going to make shots, it’s just a matter of making those shots as tough as possible on them. I thought we did a great job of contesting them in the second half, and making them take a tough shot at the end. For us, the main thing is creating momentum heading into the playoffs, so this was a good win. You never like to go in with a loss.”
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To get results into the newspaper, call 626-962-8811, Ext. 2233, 2242 or email to If you email, make sure to leave a contact number in case one of our reporters has questions. Also, we do not have reporters at every game like football, so the scoreboard is tough to update. If you’re at a game, please come back and post the final score in the comments section, thanks.

Thursday’s games
Boys Basketball

Diamond Ranch 62, Nogales 60
Arrowhead League
California Lutheran at La Verne Lutheran, 7:30 p.m.
Miramonte League
Bonita at Charter Oak, 6:30 p.m.
Los Altos at Wilson, 6:30 p.m.
Montview League
Duarte at La Puente, 6 p.m.
Gladstone at Sierra Vista, 6 p.m.
Bassett at Azusa, 6 p.m.
San Antonio League
West Covina at South Hills, 6:30 p.m.
Rowland at Walnut, 6:30 p.m.
Sierra League
Glendora at Ayala, 7 p.m.
Diamond Bar at Damien, 7 p.m.
Chino at Chino Hills, 7 p.m.
Valle Vista League
Northview at Covina, 6:30 p.m.
Ganesha at Baldwin Park, 6:30 p.m.
Pomona at San Dimas, 6:30 p.m.
Note: All varsity girls games start before the boys games.

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GSoccer: San Dimas wins VVL; LA beats CO

San Dimas won the Valle Vista League title with a 5-3 victory over Northview on Tuesday. Ariel Shore, Erika Kalmar, Rachel Quaternik and Shannon McKee each scored in the second half Tuesday as the Saints secured a rare come-from-behind victory. The Saints, who also received a first-half goal from Quaternik, improved to 16-4-4 overall and 9-0 in league. Northview, receiving goals from Natalie Barbera, Marissa Cross and Alyssia Fuentes, slipped to 12-10-2 and 6-3.

Look at these wonderful pictures, taken by award-winning sports photographer Keith Birmingham. Check out Birmingham’s photo gallery, whether he’s covering the Lakers, Dodgers, Angels, UCLA, USC, or SGV preps, he takes the same time and effort putting these galleries together.

Los Altos 3, Charter Oak 2: — Los Altos girls soccer coach Chris Reeder knows his team is young and inexperienced, but he never stopped preaching will over skill, and on Wednesday the Conquerors’ gutty effort prevailed, just as it has all season long. After falling behind twice, Los Altos rallied for a 3-2 victory over host Charter Oak, and can clinch the Miramonte League title outright with a victory over Wilson Thursday, which would be the Conquerors’ first league title since 1993 — also the last time the Conquerors won a CIF-SS divisional title. The Conquerors improved to 15-7-2 and 4-1-2 while the Chargers dropped to 15-7-2 and 3-3-1.
“To be honest I really didn’t expect this from us,” Reeder said. “We pretty much got outplayed on the field today. Charter Oak is a great team but our energy picked up in the second half and we started winning 50-50 balls and giving ourselves chances in front of the goal.”
After Conquerors’ forward Tara Coffer narrowly beat an offside trap and finished on a breakaway to level the match 2-2 in the 68th minute, sophomore midfielder Lauren Stupin delivered the knockout minutes later.
Running down the left flank looking for someone to cross the ball into, Stupin curled a shot toward the far post that kept on curling. It seemed to confuse Chargers goalkeeper Elvia Gonzalez, who back-peddled quickly to get finger on it, but she couldn’t stop it from sneaking in, giving Stupin and the Chargers a 75th minute game winner.

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