Picking the Hacienda is like picking the Kentucky Derby, there are so many betting favorites

There is no league tougher to predict than the new Hacienda League, which includes Diamond Bar, Diamond Ranch, West Covina, Rowland, Bonita, Los Altos and Walnut. Looking at Aram’s recent All-Encompassing San Gabriel Valley Top 25 poll, he has four teams from the Hacienda ranked, with West Covina No. 9, Diamond Ranch No. 10, Rowland No. 13 and Bonita No. 22, but seriously, there is no telling how this is going to shake out. Won’t Diamond Bar be reborn again after leaving the Sierra, especially with its sights set on a mammoth Oct. 1 encounter with its soon to be hated rival, Diamond Ranch, when the two meet for the first time? Can’t you picture Los Altos bouncing back and recharged under new coach Jim Arellanes? Walnut might be the one team in over its head this season, but I wouldn’t be surprised if this race comes down to the final weeks with as many as six teams within a game of each other. It’s going to be that tight. I too think West Covina has a slight edge, but I like Rowland to finish second, Diamond Ranch third and Bonita fourth. Diamond Bar, for me, is a sleeper. This is just what the doctor ordered for the purple, and looking at their preseason lineup of Nogales, Wilson, Don Lugo and Brea Olinda, the purple could and should be 4-0 when they meet DRanch, a game that will take bragging rights to another level.


Above: West Covina coach Mike Maggiore and staff will have their hands full this fall.

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  • Aaron

    Hacienda League:
    1. WC, Bonita
    2. Rowland
    3. Diamond Ranch
    4. Walnut
    5. Diamond Bar
    6. Los Altos

    Sombody isn’t doing their homework…I actually think Bonita may finish second but that game with WesCo is huge. For Bonita their only easy games would be Los Altos and maybe Diamond Bar.

    However, if you look at Diamond Bar last season and the majority of people on the team they have returning. Their only win was against Chino and the most points Chino put up the entire season was against Diamond Bar, and Diamond Bar tied the the least amount of points put on Chino with 34. Brea Olinda went 2-8 last season.

    Los Altos, well I don’t like what I’ve seen. They look bad. I think they would have done better if Coach Aguilar was given a third year.

    Walnut, they get the short end of the stick after going 7-3 and missing the playoffs last season. And yet I know what that feels like two years missing the playoffs because of a coin flip. But I don’t think they have enough to get past the other four.

    Diamond Ranch, wow Coach Layton knows how to answer questions. Things look better to me today than they had. However, how do you replace Gus Viramontes, Amari Staten, Elisha Henley, Brandon Taylor and others? The answer is you can’t replace them but you can have a bunch of guys reel in the slack. Wait and see attitude.

    Rowland-Michael Ball, they are a one man show. But that one man show is as dangerous can be. However I’m worried about his durability.

    Bonita- What is not to like with Garrett Pendletn returning at quarterback. Only Podley’s second two year starter at Bonita I can remember. And then you have who will be his receivers in let’s just start with the Horine brothers in Casey and Garrett, Daniel Harriman, Zach Brungard, Matt Gelalich, Cameron Salce, KC Huth, and others. And defense…they’re scary, experienced and talented.

    WC- Never discount Maggiore. However, I wonder what kind of offense they’ll be running since he tends tweak a bit with his personnel. George Johnson is back at quarterback for a third season but I’m not sold on him being any more than a game manager. But he is pretty darn good at doing that. Will their BJ Lee and Chris Solomon step up to replace the production of Ricky Johnson and Jesse Ili?

  • Football Lover

    This is going to be a close league. Anyone can win at anytime, alongside the Sierra League! Fred what are your predictions there?

  • football observer

    This is going to be a close league. Anyone can win anytime alongside the Sierra League! Fred what are your predictions there?

  • Committment Counts

    I think a lot of people have been pretty tough on the Los Altos coaching staff and program. The bottom line is that while the coach is ultimately (and sometimes unfairly)held responsible for his teams outcome, the players play the games. You have to have something to work with and from all the b1tching and moaning I have read since last year, “some” of the parents in this program are also partially to blame. It sounds like there has been a blood letting, a clensing of a sorts within the Los Altos program. Hopefully the new coach will find a way to build on this and motivate the players that have stuck it out to elevate their game this year and surprise all the nay sayers. Hopefully their year will be, if nothing else, a step up from last year. I mean that not only in their win-loss record but also as in an attitudal (is that a word?) building block for the years to come. To all you players/parents and boosters who have stayed the course and remain faithful to your school, I commend you and wish you the best of luck this season. Play for team/school and personal pride this year and be a part of the change for the better!

  • SGV for 30 Years

    I agree the Hacienda League will be tough this year. Here is how I see it shaping up. Aaron you have Bonita way to high. I don’t see them being about to contend with the team speed and size of West Covina, Diamond Ranch, or Rowland. So to me they are competing for 4th place with Walnut. So here is the stack up from top to bottom
    1. West Covina/Diamond Ranch – I think their showdown will come down to who makes a big play in the 4th quarter.

    3. Rowland – Ball is a great player but I don’t think he has enough help to keep up with DR or WC. If he gets hurt again (knock on wood) the Raiders could drop further.

    4. Walnut – I have to go with the Mustangs on this one. They will be much improved on the offensive and defensive lines this year. They also have some guys who can make big plays. But they can’t keep up with the top 2.

    5. Bonita – I’m sure they will be solid. Returning QB good skill guys. I’m putting them at 5 because they haven’t traditionally been able to handle Walnut. Their match up will decide these 2 spots. But like Walnut they will give up to many big plays to the top 3.

    6. Diamond Bar – They will have solid QB play with Cameron, I just don’t see them being able to stop any of the teams above them. Fred seems to think that the re-leaguing will help. I’m not seeing that. Fred is living in the glory days of Diamond Bar. Those days are over. Maybe for ever. DB has to huge rivalry games. If they get beat by Walnut and DRanch this year, who will want to go there. Get use to the “What about tennis chant.”

    7. Los Altos – Oh how the mighty have fallen. I’m not impressed with the new coaching staff. Let see he inherited a talented team at Northview. What happend a few short years later. Coach Aguiliar will be watching this situation and be torn between his loyality to LA and saying you see you can’t win the Indy 500 with a pair of roller skates. Can you say 0 for league?

    That’s my pre-season take on the Hacienda League. I will be giving a mid season league ranking. Injuries and coaching may cause teams to move up or down in the rankings. Good Luck to all.

    SGV430 Ouutt!!!!

  • Aaron

    That’s your opinion.

    Good to know they’ll be underdogs in your mind.

  • WHAT A SAD SITUATION

    That is one sad situation over at LA . It is a shame the condition Gano left them in when he decided to go to greener pastures. He made quite a name for himself there and he left them a broken program. You Damien people better watch out because he just may do the same to your program.

  • Harris wilson

    Alright come on has anybody looked at the possibility that diamond bar can take over there preseason and go into league hot? and there starting line up isn’t bad at all

  • Harris wilson

    Alright come on has anybody looked at the possibility that diamond bar can take over there preseason and go into league hot? and there starting line up isn’t bad at all

  • Damien is where it needed to be years ago, well coached.

    ALL CAPS…zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    You might be on to something…zzzzzzzzzzzz

    Notice how many Damien backers are complaining, back stabbing or calling each other out………….zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    What’s that you say? Yeah I know it’s NOT HAPPENING !!!….lol

    We are happy because Gano changed the culture of the school, the atmosphere of the program and brought in REAL coaches instead of CYO rejects, too inexperienced off the street nice guys and Dads with too much money and absolutely Varsity experience to coach D2 Football. What D2 program hires liek that? Answer that.

    Just compare the former Amat coaches to what we had before. Now we have Fair who played for Rose Bowl Champions Stanford, Gano with four Championships, Garrison who got Monrovia to Championship games, Merrill who won a Championship, Spooner who did 20 years at Amat, Price and Pace who played in the NFL by way of USC and UCLA and on and on. Best of all they are quality MEN not BOYS. Just look at what Price has doen with his children an din his life. Quality means something.

    Damien might win three games this year, an dI’e never said less tahn a SL Championship in any year so that’s huge. Credit the slide of the program to the economy plus CO, BA, SH, DR, GHS, CHHS for putting or keeping their programs on the map while Sparta lost talented players and awesome families.

    All the drama about this and that and suddenly, like a shot in the dark, Damien is all smiles and hope, an dthat’s teh TRUTH. No one says they expect a CIF Championship but they just wanted the boys to be treated right and for athletes to have a great experience represeting their school.

    I hear Gano reads this blog, which I think is stupid for any Head Coach to do but that’s his call, all he needs to know is he’s a Godsend to Damien and we’ll see it thru one way or another. $$$$, support and help is on the way as soon as we get the all powerful Amumni on board. Cross your fingers on that one.

    No more Rabe’s or Smitty’s or Johnson’s or Brown’s in the mix but we have coaches and that’s a great foundation, plus the kids work hard and love their coaches.

    We have three QBs any school would want and WRs up the wazoo. Now we need tough minded hitters to repsond when someone punches us in the face, like Upland did. That’s Gano’s job and I have confidence in him and his “MEN”.

    Take a look at the Freshmen practices to see how far we’ve come.

    Look I hated Morrison and his stupid stuck up ways and back stabbing coaches but they are gone like I said they would. Funny but it took Gano less than a week to show what leadership is all about. One freakin week! Hate him all you want, curse him to wherever…WE LOVE THE GUY!!!!! I will repeat that again…WE ABSOLUTELY LOVE THE GUY!!!!

    Kiss my azz. He ain’t going anywhere! Now put that in a Zig Zag and puff away loser!

  • Aaron

    At best Diamond Bar will be 2-2 going into league. They won’t beat Wilson or Don Lugo.

  • ALL I SAID WAS

    Mr Damien,
    All I said was it is sad the condition of the program at LA is in. It is in that condition due to how and what Gano did in his last years. He left the program in shambles whether you care to believe or not . I have seen the blog and maybe Damien backers do not blog or not quite as vocal as you but I have not seen very many praising him as you do nor in the manner you do . I think maybe you go a bit overboard to rub it in the faces of the many at Damien who put you thru the ringer when you fought your one man battle and now say ” see I told you so” every chance you get.Hey if it is all love and kisses great because that is good for the players but all I said was becareful it could happen again. Now you can get off the soap box as you tend to do on all your posts and learn when to write your rages and when to just leave things alone. On the calling each other out and such I bet they still have a few choice words for you.

  • Fan

    Wow! What is Nogales basketball going to do now with Roper leaving for another job? Who would be the next coach?

  • patrick

    Aaron, if everybody based the future off the past, life would be pretty miserable! Based off your comments and your hate towards Diamond Bar, you indeed live a pretty miserable personal life.

    If indeed they do better than predicted perhaps you will cease to spread your cowardly hate.

    P.S lighten up, these are kids!!

  • DRanchhhh

    I will gladly take DR low on the list. Every post I read says something close to the same thing, Oh they lost Gus, Elisha, Amari. Last time I checked It takes 11 on each side of the ball so that 1,2 or maybe 3 can make a play.

    I will not comment on DR anymore until after the Santa Margarita game, thats unless Aaron or Amat 73 pushes me. All I can say is that we are Real.

    All of the WESCO hype is fuel. TRUST ME. Two of our last year coaches are over there coaching now. That game will be intense. Also last I checked, WC had a stout team in 08 with Albert Cid, RJ and a few others and they couldnt even get out of the backfield against us. So, we shall see!!

  • Aaron

    Not hating at all. Just trying to lay down the facts. If they had the off-season that Azusa or Chino Hills has had my tune would be different. If those children, because that is what they are, can battle and make it a great season that will be good. I’ll eat a crow burrito with some crow salsa with some crow sugar in my ice crow tea.

    Also I know what losing campaigns can be like, and you know what even though you lose the game can still be fun if you treat it right.

    Mr. Corona, I have no idea why that dude decided to stir up that closed case. However, what do you think about the new league?

  • I’ll accept that critique

    ALL CAPS, fair enough.

    I do take most chances to say I told you so only because of how miserable things got there. Maybe that’s my point. All was for naught. There is water under the bridge and there is a raw sewage spill, I’ll leave you to guess which one was at Damien,

    Anyway I seen Damien in a three way with JW North and St. Francis. St. Francis is as well coached as when I played them in the mid 70′s. They are a solid, fundamentally sound and hard working team. Clever with their passing routes, actually very clever.

    As far as JW North goes, speed, speed and more speed. They had one great WR who really impressed with his size, skill and hands.

    Damien is loaded at QB and will have their work cut out for them this year. Pads will tell the story of possible wins but overall it will come down to getting punched in the face all season until they decide to punch back.

    Damein reminds me of the Real Estate market. No one put any money away, everyone took the good times for granted and now we’re upside down. Tragic what happened in plain sight. Maybe that’s why you don’t hear the big positives coming out of Damien. Reality, even for any big time RE guys, has humbled the prospect for continued wealth and good times.

    Damien will struggle. I’ve never said that before. But like the economy it will eventually turn around. My hope is Gano and Co get the help they need. Too bad last year’s seniors never appreciated them enough until it was too late. Like the Bishop Amat, Rancho Cucamonga and Charter Oak games proved….it wasn’t the coaching that lead the team to a 5-6 record.

    What a terrible waste.

    BTW great job out there today Spartans. All three QBs looked solid, Alfaro makes great reads, Zalvivar makes great throws but Hockins is a special talent. Could be better than Jeffries in my humble estimation. Just an amazing talent. Well that’s my four cents…the kids will work it I’m sure.

  • Come out of the Closet

    Fred but have you been in the closet all summer.

    “Los Altos bouncing back and recharged under new coach Jim Arellanes?”

    NOT HAPPENING!!!!!!!

    They finished last place in the Arroyo competition and didn’t win a single game in the Bonita competition. If that isn’t bad enough they lost to Workman.

    I saw them at the Bonita Comp., by far the worse team out their. This program is years away from competing.

    Fred if you consider that recharged, better start looking for new batteries

  • CH

    Damien Guy:
    You talk about QB’s?? I heard the leading candidate was last years JV starter who probably completed all but one pass against the CHills undefeated JV team, that kid is really coming around and has the offseason hardware to prove it.

  • Wilson?

    I don’t get what’s all this hype about Wilson high. what makes them so much better this year than last year? sure their quarterback grew a few inches, but I don’t even know if he’s as good as omana or cameron at diamond bar, and they lack the skill people as well, so why?

  • ReallyZ???

    wilson??

    We kno ur come how connected to LA, and people are bashing on you guys because they see your not going to be good this year! but now you want to bring wilson into this. Have you seen them play?lack skill positions> think not! how about you keep your comments to yourself and come back on after week 2 when LA get pounced on!!

    No disrespect to the LA players or coaches, we all understand when you dont have the rep of some other schools you dont get the players every year and you must rebuild

  • Walnut Insider

    Let me jump in.

    I would probably rank them in this order
    1. WC
    2. DR
    3. Rowland
    4. Bonita
    5. Walnut
    6. DB
    7. LA

    I think that Bonita could easily end up 3rd. As of now the only teams I think Walnut is better than is DB and LA. Even saying that DB was young last year, they could have grown over the year, so that isn’t a sure win. Walnut has dominated them the last 2 years, but only got one win out of the 2.

    Walnut has so many questions going into the season it’s hard to predict how they will do. How good will the line be with one year experience? Can they replace the skill players from last year (although for the talent, they didn’t perform week to week)? Can they find a solid number one QB and stick with him? That’s just on the offensive side of the ball.

    And who doesn’t have that game on the 29th of October with Rowland circled?

  • I Disagree

    Damien in a three way with JWNorth and St. Francis? Only in some twisted x-rated football dream of yours…JWNorth and St. Francis are way better teams than Damien. Damien is rebuilding and running on the fumes of rivalries past. After that wears off, Damien wears out! Stick to the “we are rebuilding under Gano” tag line because it will make your upcoming season more bearable as your getting handled by the JWNorth’s and St. Francis’s of the football world. This is Spar…aw, never mind.

  • Wilson?

    ReallyZ

    I’m not from Los Altos and I’m not saying that Wilson sucks, exactly. I’m just asking, what made Wilson so much better this year than last year?

  • Basic

    Aaron,

    I love the passion you have for Bonita, and like your outlook, but I have to say that SGV’s and Walnut’s takes are closer to what I think will shake down.

    WestCo at 1 followed by DR then Rowland, then we come to the Bearcats who have some great athletes at the skill positions, GP has improved, hopefully enough to keep this team in the hunt, and I think after the Smudgepot victory this team will have some confidence and I can see them making some noise.

    The thing that really bothers me is, this team can play with the top 3 and beat them, Yes beat them or they can get blown out by them. So I have to say it again, it comes back to coaching, and yes Pod is a great guy an a good coach, but I just don’t think he has the Fire for it. It seems to me that he is just to comfy in his current situation and is ok with just having average to good teams and does not Demand Greatness from his kids. Yes he is a good coach and a great guy but when you don’t have the HUNGER it shows. I mean look, he is not in danger of loosing his job and he is not looking for a better one, so maybe that is why he is not Demanding of his kids…Yes others can share in the blame but he is the head coach…

  • Hacienda League

    Wilson?,

    Do you really think that we believe you aren’t a LA supporter. This thread is about the Hacienda league. Everyone is smashing on LA so you come on here and start trash talking about Wilson. Who else in the Hacienda league has the need to talk trash about Wilson.

    You want your answer “what makes Wilson so much better this year from last year”.

    You will get your answer week 2!

  • WOW!!!

    Wilson sucks!

  • LA is Desprite

    First off Wilson destoryed you guys in 7on7, I now understand how Workman beat you guys.

    Wilson finished thrid in the Aroyyo comp. what place did Los Altos finish, o yea 18th (last).

    Saw LA at the Bonita comp., once again didnn’t win a single game. I watched one of your games, you honestly completed more passes to the defense than the offense. I have never seen a team get beat as bad as you guys did in that game.

    Now what we can only conclude from this summer based on FACTS is,

    LOS ALTOS SUCKS

  • carefree

    Schreimen…stop already! You were told by everyone to stop making Wilson look getto and you just keep going! Find a boyfriend already!

  • LA is Desprite

    Not Schreiman but the parents, booster, and coaches (at Wilson) fully support what Schreiman is doing. If your porgram didn’t suck so back just maybe the Los Altos parents would stop calling him.

  • Schreiman

    Dont understand what your talking about, Im just another parent, supporting our program.

    Week 2!

  • SGV for 30 Years

    Why are we talking about Wilson? They wanted no part of being in the Hacienda League. Weren’t they the doormat of the Miramonte League? That’s why they are now in the Valle Vista league. Guess what it will be “different league, same result.”

    SGV430 Ouuut!!!

  • Wilson Parent

    SGV for 30 Years,

    If you read through this thread one of your teams form the Hacienda league decided to talk trash about Wilson. If for a second you think the Wilson bloggers aren’t going to support their program then you are a fool.

    Thanks for the support by the way, hopefully our players will prove you wrong. Either way you have no class.

  • Jimmy C. Corn

    1 DR
    2 RR
    3 BB
    4 WC
    5 DB
    6 WM
    7 LA

    top 4 teams are equally matched. coaching will be the difference.

  • SGV for 30 Years

    Wilson Parent,

    I did read through all the thread. I can see all the Wilson supporters coming to their defense. That’s a good thing. I would be worried if you didn’t. But if you have read my posts, I try to give an honest opinion based on facts not emotions. So when I say that Wilson didn’t want to be in the Hacienda League I know this as a fact. If memory serves me correctly your game against LA is for the Wagon Wheel. Hey good luck.

    SGV Ouuuut!!!!

  • Wilson Parent

    My issue was with the comment,

    Guess what it will be “different league, same result.”

    What was your point in making the comment.

    During the summer we have done so much better than last year in 7on7′s and the linemen comp. that we went to.

    Linemen comp at LP we competed against Bonita,
    Azusa, and St. Francis. St. Francis came in first and Wilson came in second.

    The Aroyyo 7on7 we came in 3rd of of 18 teams. We competed in every 7on7 this summer, no one blew us out.

    What do I take out of this, we look better than last year, how much time will tell.

  • SGV for 30 Years

    Wilson Parent,

    I’m glad to see that you have such a positive outlook for Wilson. I actually have some pretty deep roots in Haciende Heights. I will make it a point to follow some of the Wildcats games this season. I was actually more of an LA fan sorry to say. It would be great to see the Wagon Wheel game actually mean something other than just the bragging rights.

    SGV430 Ouut!!!!!!!!!!

  • Wilson Parent

    SGV for 30 Years,

    Actually my roots are very deep in Hacienda Heights, since 1964 with a 5 year vacation. I also was a Los Altos supporter but saw the light, actually seven players on Varsity played at least freshmen ball at Los Altos.