I’ve had the privilege of covering some pretty amazing teams from around these parts. I was on the field when Los Altos won CIF in 2003. I was on the field when South Hills won CIF in 2005. They were great moments to be a sports writer, who happened to jump on the bandwagon at the right time. But you know what I enjoy even more than that? Getting on the bandwagon of a school that’s not tasted success in almost forever. And that’s where I am today.
Correspondent John Honell is a longtime contributor to the Tribune, and well-known throughout the San Gabriel Valley. He knows the area’s history, coaches, and always seems to have insider information. He will share some of it with his “Touching Base” pieces that will run from time to time.
My thoughts on the first two weeks of prep football …
What is zero week? Zero times anything is still zero. Does that mean the first games of the year don’t count? If someone tells me they live in the third house from the corner, do I count zero, one, two, three? Com’n CIF, just say it. We have 11 weeks of football with some teams getting a bye week. More hype sets up a bigger payday for the CIF. (moving for athletic reasons?) – to continue click thread
West Covina 42, South Hills 27 — Would someone send the Covina tape, I’m having a hard time comprehending how they pulled it off after watching West Covina dismantle South Hills every way imaginable. You weren’t thinking what happened to South Hills, you were more in awe of the Bulldogs’ backfiled and 0-Line. It was the most points scored on South Hills this decade. If this team doesn’t turn the ball over, they won’t get beat the rest of the way, and that includes Glendora next. Last week it was RB Chris Soloman, this week it was B.J. Lee (125 yards, 3 TDs), and next week it could be someone else. They’re that deep, and were better than I thought on the D-Line. What you don’t know is how they will handle a quarterback like Glendora’s Chad Jeffries. But questions about everything else were answered tonight, a big thumbs up.
Azusa 31, Ontario Christian 10 – Fine I’ll say it: The Aztecs can compete with anyone in the Mid-Valley Division. There is not a game they won’t have a chance to win, so yes, a Mid-Valley title is possible. Especially with QB Jose “The Real Deal” Nunez, who scored four touchdowns and threw for 207 yards.
Garey 49, Duarte 0 — It doesn’t show on the scoreboard, but the Falcons go down fighting every week.
Inland Insider Tom Kiss wraps it up with West Covina coach Mike Maggiore, RB B.J. Lee and South Hills coach Steve Bogan.
With the vacation days gone lets get back to business. For the third straight week Mike “The Cousin” Robledo will do Coveritlive from the Bishop Amat-Muir game, another no-brainer whenever you pit two traditional East-West Valley powers. I forget the year, but I can still remember my pop running out of the stands about 15 years ago with his Muir ’58 alumni shirt when the Mustangs beat Amat on a last second Hail Mary at Kiefer. That won’t happen this year, not even close, but I’m sure the family will be there again. However, would you be surprised if Muir hung with Amat? Not at all, this is a team over the years that tends to play to its level of competition and has the athletes to compete with the big boys. If you don’t believe me, ask Charter Oak, who needed a last-second goal line stand to beat Muir in the first-round of the playoffs last year, nearly knocking the Chargers’ back-to-back championship bid out before they had a chance to warm up.
The Scouting Guru has been all over the San Gabriel Valley and beyond, and like always, he’s offered to share his thoughts, free of charge. Don’t hate, enjoy it for what it’s worth, which is one man’s opinion on the talent in the San Gabriel Valley.
Thursday night at Covina District Field, West Covina and South Hills will lock horns in one of the longest running rivalries in the San Gabriel Valley. And for many football, there are football games and then there is West Covina vs. South Hills. Now some fans might argue that the Smudge Pot is bigger, or that the Charter Oak vs. Glendora game is very important for the talent on the field, and others might argue that Covina vs. Northview deserves to be used in the same breathe. And their could be some validity to it. But, as far as I am concerned, West Covina vs. South Hills ranks right at the top of the list. (To continue, click thread).
“That’s always a goal because we’ve been 9-1 the past two seasons. It would be great to be undefeated before the playoffs. I’m sure it’s in the back of the kids’ heads. But we have to take it one game at a time.” — Azusa coach Joe Scherf
By Aram Tolegian
Among other great things to come out of Azusa’s stunning 48-0 rout of Bell Gardens was it cleared the way for the Aztecs to finish the regular season with a 10-0 record. If it sounds foolish to talk about such a feat just one game into the season, it may not be considering Azusa’s loss to Bell Gardens last season was the only thing that prevented the Aztecs from finishing 10-0.
By Aram Tolegian, Staff Writer
History says nobody should be too worried about the Diamond Ranch High School football team’s 0-2 start. After all, the Panthers are notorious for slow starts that empty the bandwagon only to see it swell up again with a strong run in November. But things feel a tad different this year after Diamond Ranch was blown out by Santa Margarita 56-0 in Week 0, then saw what most consider to be a very average Damien team go on a 19-0 run in the fourth quarter to post a 26-19 win last Friday.
By Brian Baiotto, Correspondent
The high school sports season has just started, but Bonita already has two significant victories over crosstown rival San Dimas. The Bearcats dominated the CIF-Southern Section Mid-Valley Division champion Saints, 41-20, in the first week of football season, and the Bonita girls volleyball team defeated visiting San Dimas 25-10, 25-10, 25-27, 25-8 in front of a raucous crowd Tuesday.
Here is this week’s football Top 10. Fred will update the complete rankings when he gets back on Wednesday.
1. Bishop Amat (2-0) – Survived scare vs. Dominguez
2. Glendora (2-0) – Beat another CIF finalist
3. Charter Oak (1-1) – Returned to form
4. Chino Hills (1-1) – Took a step back
5. South Hills (1-0) – Impressive win in opener
6. Rowland (2-0) – Ball has Raiders rolling
7. Bonita (2-0) – Doing fine without Pendleton
8. Ayala (2-0) – Better than some thought
9. Claremont (1-1) – Drops after loss to Bonita
10. Azusa (1-0) – Can they run the table?
Here is this week’s volleyball top 10, which St. Lucy’s showed its the top team after taking down previous No. 2 Los Altos on Monday:
1. St. Lucy’s (1-1) -- Statement win over Los Altos
2. Bonita(0-0) — Hopes to test No. 1
3. Los Altos (1-1) — Out of sync vs. St. Lucy’s
4. San Dimas (0-0) – Faced Bonita on Tuesday
5. Chino Hills (2-0) – Doubled up on Diamond duo
6. South Hills (0-1) – Swept by St. Joseph’s
7. Glendora (1-0) – Looked good in opener
8. Walnut (2-4) – Mixed reviews in week one
9. Bishop Amat (0-0) – First test comes next week
10. La Puente (1-0) – Gets Azusa in opener
St. Lucy’s was all smiles after sweeping Los Altos Monday in a nonleague match featuring the top two teams in the area.
St. Lucy’s Priory was without one of its top players, and perhaps its most-important piece Monday night.
Senior Kailey Faust, substituting for All-CIF-Southern Section setter Jackie Macy, had 28 assists and the host Regents took down Los Altos, 25-17, 25-15, 25-16, in nonleague girls volleyball match that featured the areas top two teams.
St. Lucy’s, also getting 10 kills from senior outside hitter Alissa Young and six from junior opposite Jasmine Warmington, improved to 1-1 after opening the season with with a four-game loss to highly-regarded Los Osos last week.
Los Altos, which won the school’s first CIF-SS divisional title last season and began the year ranked No. 1 in Division 2-A and No. 2 in the area, slipped to 1-1.
St. Lucy’s coach Sean Douglas: I think we are extremely lucky to have a setter like Kailey. She works hard and sometimes its difficult when you are playing behind an All-CIF setter like Macy, but today she stepped in and you saw the results. We’re lucky A lot of teams if they lost their No. 1 setter, would be in trouble. We played great today.”
Los Altos coach Jaime Ornelas: “They are a very good team and this wasn’t one of our better days. Like I said before, we have a few veterans and a few players who have never played varsity volleyball.
“We’re still finding our niche. It was one of those days. It was a good match to give us a reality check.”
Baldwin Park def. Bassett 25-7, 25-15, 25-6
Northview def. Charter Oak 25-12, 14-25, 25-23, 25-19
Nogales def. Pioneer 12-25, 25-21, 27-25, 21-25, 15-13.
Diamond Bar def. Rancho Cucamonga 25-15, 26-28, 17-25, 27-25, 16-14.
Fred Robledo and I will go head-to-head throughout the season.
Last Week: Robledo (19-6); Ramirez (19-6).
Season: Robledo (33-9); Ramirez (30-12).
Last week: Fred and i both went 19-6, so he still leads by three after two weeks of the season. I was able to outguess him on Ayala’s win over Colony and Azusa’s romp over Bell Gardens. But he got me back by picking Diamond Bar over Wilson and Walnut over Troy. We have some really good matchups this week, starting with the Battle of Cameron between South Hills and West Covina, which takes center stage on Thursday night. The other intriguing games feature Bishop Amat playing host to Muir, a traditional matchup that returns this season, and Rosemead at Rowland, which should be a tight game.
West Covina vs. South Hills at CDF, 7 p.m. — Robledo (South Hills); Ramirez (South Hills)
Ontario Christian vs. Azusa at Citrus College, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Azusa); Ramirez (Azusa)
Duarte vs. Garey at Ganesha, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Garey); Ramirez (Garey)
Muir at Bishop Amat, 7:30 p.m. — Robledo (Bishop Amat); Ramirez (Bishop Amat)
Rosemead at Rowland, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Rowland); Ramirez (Rowland)
Wilson at Los Altos, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Wilson); Ramirez (Los Altos)
Glendora vs. Canyon at El Modena HS, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Glendora); Ramirez (Glendora)
Rancho Cucamonga at San Dimas, 7 p.m. — Robledo (RC); Ramirez (RC)
Walnut at Claremont, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Claremont); Ramirez (Claremont)
Esperanza at Charter Oak, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Ch. Oak); Ramirez (Esperanza)
Chaffey at Damien, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Damien); Ramirez (Damien)
Don Lugo at Diamond Bar, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Dia. Bar); Ramirez (Dia. Bar)
El Monte vs. Covina at CDF, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Covina); Ramirez (Covina)
Gladstone vs. Bosco Tech at Citrus College, 7 p.m. — Robledo (B. Tech); Ramirez (Gladstone)
Mountain View at Sierra Vista, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Sierra Vista); Ramirez (Sierra Vista)
Northview at La Puente, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Northview); Ramirez (Northview)
Workman at South El Monte, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Workman); Ramirez (Workman)
Arroyo at Montebello, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Arroyo); Ramirez (Arroyo)
Baldwin Park at Cantwell-Sacred Heart, 7 p.m. — Robledo (B.Park); Ramirez (B. Park)
Bonita vs. Santa Fe at Pioneer, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Bonita); Ramirez (Bonita)
Alta Loma at Ayala, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Ayala); Ramirez (Ayala)
Nogales vs. Ontario at Montclair, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Nogales); Ramirez (Ontario)
Pomona at Ganesha, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Pomona); Ramirez (Pomona)
Tesoro at Chino Hills, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Chino Hills); Ramirez (Chino Hills)
Diamond Ranch vs. Elsinore at Ganesha, 7 p.m. — Robledo (Elsinore); Ramirez (Elsinore)
The anyone and anything thread you want to talk about. We also use this thread each week for your nominations on boys and girls athlete of the week, and a look forward to next week’s schedule, where we have a pair of back-to-back thrillers, South Hills-West Covina on Thursday, Muir at Bishop Amat on Friday.
Thursday, September 16
Duarte vs. Garey at Ganesha, 7:00pm
Ontario Christian vs. Azusa at Citrus College, 7:00pm
West Covina vs. South Hills at Covina District Stadium, 7:00pm
Friday, September 17
Alta Loma at Ayala, 7:00pm
Arroyo at Montebello, 7:00pm
Baldwin Park at Cantwell-Sacred Heart, 7:00pm
Bonita vs. Santa Fe at Pioneer, 7:00pm
Don Lugo at Diamond Bar, 7:00pm
El Monte vs. Covina at Covina District Stadium, 7:00pm
Esperanza at Charter Oak, 7:00pm
Gladstone vs. Bosco Tech at Citrus College, 7:00pm
Glendora vs. Canyon at El Modena, 7:00pm
Mountain View at Sierra Vista, 7:00pm
Muir at Bishop Amat, 7:30pm
Nogales vs. Ontario at Montclair, 7:00pm
Northview at La Puente, 7:00pm
Pomona at Ganesha, 7:00pm
Rancho Cucamonga at San Dimas, 7:00pm
Rosemead at Rowland, 7:00pm
Walnut at Claremont, 7:00pm
Wilson at Los Altos, 7:00pm
Workman at South El Monte, 7:00pm
L.A. Marshall at Bassett, 7:00pm
San Dimas 55, South El Monte 0 — Those who thought the Saints would struggle after last week’s loss to Bonita better think again.
South Hills 38, Baldwin Park 17 — Huskies rush for 373 yards and Jordan Gutierrez rushes for 186 yards as they pull away in second half.
Walnut 16, Troy 10 – Mustangs get a nice victory over an O.C. school.
Charter Oak 34, Gardena 7 – You knew the Chargers would bounce back convincingly didn’t you?
West Covina 35, Venice 21 – After a mind-boggling loss to Covina, the Bulldogs come back with a mind-boggling win over Venice. Now, that’s how you bounce back from a tough loss.
Arroyo 42, Temple City 6 – These are the Knights I expected all along, but nobody expected this kind of blowout.
Azusa 48, Bell Gardens 0 – Can’t believe I just typed it, maybe the Aztecs are the Mid-Valley Division favorites. They beat the same team that put a whipping on them last year.
Bishop Amat 21, Dominguez 15 – The Dons jumped out to a 7-0 lead on an INT return, then it was all Lancers, slowly and methodically winning again. What will the critics say now?
Rowland 41, California 9 — Raiders picked up where they left off in the second half against Baldwin Park, racing to a 41-0 halftime lead. And man, Cal is usually legit.
Santiago 24, Chino Hills 12 — The Trib’s No. 2 takes a big hit after looking so good last week.
Bonita 42, Claremont 20 — These aren’t last year’s Bearcats at all. I’m starting to think they’re the early Hacienda League favorites.
Diamond Bar 48, Wilson 27 -- The Wildcats had an early lead, then the Brahmas came rolling back.
Damien 26, Diamond Ranch 19 — A big win for Gano and the boys, the schedule only gets tougher after this. What else is new at the Ranch? They start slow, so what, they will see you in December.
Blair 23, Duarte 0 – Not the way the Falcons wanted to start after getting shutout so much last season.
Garey 42, Nogales 28 — Nobles scoring points, but giving up way too many.
Sierra Vista 35, Hoover 27 — The Dons wanted to start off with a win in the worst way and got it.
Workman 34, Keppel 0 — The Scott Morrison era at Workman off and running.
Glendora 21, Monrovia 7 — Tied 7-7 at half, Glendora wore the Cats down in the second half to go to 2-0. Give Monrovia credit though, they hung tough.
Rosemead 17, Montebello 13 — Panthers hang on by their chinny, chin-chin.
Mountain View 19, Bassett 13, OT – Vikings get a huge win, pulling it out in OT.
Bellflower 20, Los Altos 18 — Conquerors lose another tough one.
South Hills coach Steve Bogan following victory…
Chino Hills Tom catches up with Chino Hills coach Derek Bub after Friday’s loss.
Highlights of Monrovia-Glendora with interviews with Tartans coach Mark Pasquarella and Wildcats coach Ryan Maddox
Friday night quarter-by-quarter updates
Thursday’s results and GAME STORIES
Covina 33, Gladstone 0: - If you expected a letdown after WestCo, you got the wrong team, Colts roll up 400 yards total offense and QB Billy Livingston throws for 189 yards and a TD. But the real story here is Colts soph RB Gevontray Ainsworth, he’s going to be a special one for sure.
Ayala 25, Colony 0: — Chino Hills, Claremont, South Hills, Charter Oak and now Ayala. Now if Damien does a number on Diamond Ranch, you’re talking six deep in the Sierra..
Pomona 13, Montclair 0: – RB Demetrius Counts was too good, rushing for 206 yards as Red Devils go to 2-0.
La Puente 35, El Monte 27: - Lions led at half and were up 27-21 in fourth when Warriors rallied.
La Habra 23, La Mirada 17: — In the battle for No. 1 in Whittier, La Habra survives scare of starting 0-2
Coveritlive: To replay Covina-South El Monte chat, click thread.
Another great postgame Interview from Chino Hills Tom, who was watched Ayala’s impressive 25-0 win over Colony. Check it out.
By Aram Tolegian, Staff Writer
You can add South Hills High School football coach Steve Bogan to the list of those who were impressed by Baldwin Park’s showing against Rowland last week. Baldwin Park jumped to a 16-0 lead in the first half against the Raiders before falling apart in the second half and losing 35-29. It was a performance good enough to put a scare into Bogan, whose Huskies visit Baldwin Park on Friday night in their season opener. (To continue, click thread).
Upcoming: Steve Ramirez is covering the first huge volleyball game of the season on Monday, September 13, Los Altos at St. Lucy’s, 5:30 p.m.. We will have our cameras there, make sure the action is worth it.
By Steve Ramirez
Los Altos and Bonita high schools made history last season. St. Lucy’s Priory and South Hills continued with their winning traditions. The powers of the Valley, however, know that means very little for the 2010 girls volleyball season, which begins today. The key for success will be who can best wipe the slate clean. “That was yesterday,” said second-year Los Altos coach Jaime Ornelas of last season’s run to the Conquerors’ first CIF-Southern Section title, when they beat rival Bonita for the Division 3-AA championship. “We are done celebrating. We are focused on this year.”
Tribune Top Ten
No. 1 St. Lucy’s (27-5)
Armed with a solid nucleus of returners, the Regents are aiming to make another run at a CIF-SS title after advancing to the 2-AA quarterfinals the past two years.
The loaded St. Lucy’s lineup features all-area outside hitter Deanna Dalton, who had 221 kills and 14 blocks last season; setter Jackie Macy, who was All-CIF-SS Division 2; hitters Megan Callen and Alyssa Young; and opposite Jasmine Warmington. “I think we are going to have a really strong season,” said St. Lucy’s coach Sean Douglas, whose Regents begin the season ranked No. 3 in 2-AA. “We’re a year older, but we’re pretty loaded. The girls are pretty focused. We have big aspirations, but we also look at it one game at a time.”
No. 2 Los Altos (30-9)
The Conquerors, who begin the season ranked No. 1 in 2-A, made history last season, and have all the parts in place for a repeat performance. It starts in the hitting zone, where Los Altos is expected to feature two of the better attackers in the area in seniors Jazmen Russell at outside hitter and Amanda Brown at middle blocker. The duo combined for nearly 500 kills last season. Russell was first-team All- CIF-SS Division 3 and all-area. Los Altos also will feature setter Krystal Castellanos and libero Jennifer Filatoff. “We’ve challenged ourselves to work on this season and not worry about last year,” Ornelas said. “We realize this year offers new challenges.” Los Altos will battle Bonita in the new Hacienda League.
No. 3 Bonita (18-8)
The Bearcats also made history last season, just not in the way it was expecting to after advancing to the program’s first CIF-SS final before dropping the 3-AA title to Los Altos. Area Player of the Year Allie LaPierre is gone, but the Bearcats look forceful with CIF-SS Division 3 co- Player of the Year Ashley Maxfeldt at setter, outside hitter Katie Kirby, middle blocker Victoria Dennis and opposite Danielle Lines. “I have high expectations every year for my athletes, and believe this group of girls has the talent and the drive to make it to the CIF- SS finals again,” Bonita coach Adriana Contreras said. “They practice hard every day and are extremely motivated to compete.”
No. 4 South Hills (21-8)
Three-time first-team all-area player Melinda Gomez is gone, but the cupboard isn’t bare in West Covina. The Huskies will challenge in the Sierra League with Jackie Valle- Acosta, Marisa Gomez (Melinda’s younger sister) and setter Breanne Hunter. “We look pretty good,” South Hills coach Charm Doyle said. “We had a good summer, so I’m pretty optimistic. I like the potential of this team.”
No. 5 Walnut (12-6)
The Mustangs, who begin the season ranked No. 4 in Division 2-A, are led by senior setter Leau Quiocho, who had 633 assists last year.
No. 6 San Dimas (21-5)
The Saints have ruled the Valle Vista League the past two seasons, and that’s expected to continue with the return of league co-MVP Nicole Ellis. The senior hitter had 259 kills last season. San Dimas’ lineup also features all-league players Kaileen Mejia at middle hitter and Courtney Hine at setter.
No. 7 Glendora (11-6)
The Tartans have been a playoff team the past few seasons, but will be tested in their move to the Baseline League.
No. 8 Bishop Amat (12-9)
The Lancers are led by senior outside hitter Chelsey Martinez and senior opposite Yesenia Ibrahim.
No. 9 La Puente (12-5)
The Warriors, ranked No. 6 in Division 4-A, are led by senior outside hitter Rocio Armendariz, who was the Montview League MVP, and sophomore outside hitter Elisa Valenzuela, who was first-team all- league.
No. 10 Ganesha (22-6)
The Giants, led by Claudia Mosqueda and Maria Muro, will challenge in the Montview League.
Santa Margarita football coach Harry Welch has prostate cancer and will undergo surgery for it during the upcoming football season. Welch, 65, said his doctor, after initial exams, suggested a biopsy was needed and the biopsy revealed the cancer. A meeting with a specialist Tuesday will inform Welch of more details on the surgery and post-surgery treatment.
The Orange County Register’s Steve Fryer reported that CIF-SS spokesperson Thom Simmons told him that Crespi was the Southern Section leader in terms of football transfer requests. Simmons said the section received paperwork on 21 football transfers requests from Crespi. And you thought we had transfer issues out here. What I’m curious to know is how many of them were granted.