Above: Let out the balloons, the Knights are in the top ten.
1. Bishop Amat (8-0) — The trap game is no longer at Loyola, it’s at home against Notre Dame. For the love of Kiefer, the Lancers can’t go undefeated at home for three years and lose this one before the big showdown at Alemany in two weeks can they?
2. West Covina (6-1) — The Bulldogs haven’t had to prove anything since sweeping Venice, Glendora, South Hills and Rowland. Looking back, those teams are struggling now. Guess what, Bonita ain’t struggling.
3. Bonita (7-0) — They do everything undefeated teams are supposed to do, play with passion, play defense, believe when their superstars are sitting on the sidelines with injures. That’s the M.O., for championships, and another reason I’m picking them against West Covina on Friday.
4. Claremont (6-1) — After beating Chino Hills and Charter Oak, might as well give them the Sierra League trophy. This is an extremely dangerous team. If they get their running game going, nobody is having a better year than their quarterback Dan Kessler. Plus, defensively, they hold their own.
5. Chino Hills (5-2) — Quietly and confidently the Huskies claw their way back, destroying Damien after losing the Sierra opener to Claremont. When Chino Hills and Charter Oak meet, that’s for second, not first.
6. Covina (7-1) — The Colts deserve a bump in the poll after taking care of Baldwin Park, showing their first-season win over West Covina was no fluke. If they don’t win the Mid-Valley this year, they have enough underclassmen to be the favorite next year.
7. Azusa (7-0) — The Aztecs are good and we know they’re good, but until they compete against the upper-echelon teams in the division, we won’t know how good until the playoffs arrive.
8. Charter Oak (4-3) — Even Chargers fans have to admit it’s tiring losing the “must games.” The Chargers are talented enough to be 7-0 or at the very least 6-1, but they’re 0-3 in the toss-up games against Glendora, Rancho Cucamonga and Claremont.
9. Diamond Ranch (4-3) — I can hear Diamond Ranch fans screaming at me for not paying attention to their four-game win streak, for not acknowledging they’re in the race for the Hacienda too. Be patient, we can only cover one Hacienda blockbuster at a time, your day is coming.
10. Arroyo (6-1) — Look who’s finally cracked the top ten. They should stay here for a while too, nobody else is coming within three touchdowns of them in the Mission Valley League.
The Rest:11. Damien (4-3), 12. Glendora (4-3), 13. San Dimas (5-3), 14. Diamond Bar (5-3), 15. Rowland (4-4), 16. South Hills (2-5), 17. Ayala (4-3), 18. Walnut (3-4), 19. Baldwin Park (2-5), 20. Rosemead (4-3), 21. La Puente (5-2), 22. Wilson (4-3), 23. Northview (2-5), 24. Pomona (3-4), 25. El Monte (3-4), 26. Gladstone (3-4), 27. Sierra Vista (5-2), 28. Ganesha (3-4), 29. Mountain View (4-3), 30. Nogales (1-6), 31. South El Monte (1-6), 32. Bassett (3-4), 33. Workman (1-6), 34. Los Altos (0-7), 35. Duarte (0-6).
Great game highlights and commentary from Bishop Amat’s win over Crespi..