Bonita, Rowland, Glendora, and South Hills couldn’t do it, what makes Diamond Ranch think it can be the team to knock off West Covina

By Aram Tolegian, staff writer
The task of trying to slow down the West Covina High School football team this week goes to Diamond Ranch. And Panthers coach Roddy Layton appears just as perplexed as you might expect, given how unstoppable the Bulldogs have become. “Speed kills, so they’re good,” Layton said. “We’ve watched them on film and seen them live. They do a lot good of things, so pick your poison on offense – 1, 5, 20, 21, 84 – there are several (jersey) numbers.”

The reward for stopping the Bulldogs would be sweet for Diamond Ranch, which has played itself into contention for the Hacienda League title. The Panthers (5-3 overall) are tied for first place with West Covina in league at 4-0.

The Bulldogs (7-1) are on a seven-game winning streak and brutalizing opponents with a ground game that produces big plays as if it was a run-and-shoot passing attack.

Previously unbeaten Bonita was the latest victim Friday. West Covina went on a 41-0 run after being down 10-7 in the first quarter.

“I was kind of hoping the game would be more physical,” Layton said in hopes of having West Covina softened up. “I was hoping the two teams would beat each other up. But watching film, I didn’t see players from either side being carted off. So I don’t know if that game will have any effect on them.”

Diamond Ranch may fare better against the Bulldogs than Bonita simply because the Panthers have more team speed. But Layton said Monday containing West Covina
is about more than just trying to run with them.

“I’m a math teacher, so it comes down to geometry,” Layton said. “It comes down to angles. If you take the wrong angle, they’re gone. This week, we have to work on our angles. I don’t know if in a week’s time we’re gonna get faster than we already are. But traditionally we have good speed and you don’t see a lot of our players getting caught from behind, either.”

Layton said star tailback Chase Price, who missed last week’s game against Los Altos with an ankle injury, will be back in the starting lineup on Friday.

Bearcats redux

Bonita coach Eric Podley painfully watched the game film of Friday’s loss to West Covina and came away thinking all hope is not lost for his team.

“Without trying to rationalize anything, we felt a lot of our problems were problems that were self-created,” Podley said. “We gave up two kickoff returns for touchdowns and an interception return (for a touchdown). We were in the red zone seven times and came away with only two touchdowns and two field goals. Those are things we can control.”

Bonita’s season could go either way. The Bearcats, 7-1 overall and 3-1 in league, need a win over Rowland this week and for Diamond Ranch to beat West Covina. If that happens, Bonita will play Diamond Ranch the following week for a share of the Hacienda League title.

On the downside, if Bonita loses this week and next week, there’s a chance Bonita would miss the playoffs.

That scenario is hard to imagine for a team that was the talk of the first half of the season.

“We need to win out,” Podley said. “We understand it makes a big difference whether you make the playoffs or not, and who you play. That’s important because we’re yet to make it out of the first round in quite a while.

“There is a determination in the kids that we don’t want to end the season with (West Covina) being the memory of what our season was about. We want to seek some personal redemption.”

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  • Bulldog Fan

    No way that Bonita get’s left out of the playoff’s,even if they lose there last two games of the season which might not happen anyway,but they are still going to be in third place in the Hacienda that will get 4 for sure spots in the playoffs and maybe even a fifth with the at-large if CIF feels that they were the strongest league in the Southeast.

  • SGV For 30 Years

    As far as the play-offs go, I think the Hacienda League will get 5 teams in the play-offs. I wouldn’t want to be the team that has to play their at-large team. The way I see it, West Covina, Diamond Ranch, Bonita and Walnut are in. Rowland could be the 5th team if they can beat Bonita. There is a way Diamond Bar could sneak in as the at-large team (That’s the long shot since they only beat Rowland). Man what a league! That’s what high school football is suppose to be like. You gotta love this drama.

    SGV430 OOuttt!!

  • Colt74

    It sounds like they need to change the name from CIF playoffs to HACIENDA playoffs. Scary that they have so many good teams.

  • ? for sgv

    how does rowland have a chance to get in? it seams like diamond bar has a good chance to get the at large.

  • kh

    watch the films d.r.
    g.p. was off, not that w/c was on.
    in red zone 7 times,if we scored 5 of those times and dont turn ball over we beat the bulldogs.
    i still dont think there that good,look at freds high lite film ,keep your eyes on all the holding from w/c/ down field..its there too not making this up.bearcats will win out right easy,rowland the the mad math teacher.theres only one thing to figure out,the other team scores more points you loss.
    i went to your play-off game last year,no way you guys should of been repping at that game/adam was on cruise control the whole night.
    d.r. we are going to spank you guys.i dont see gus over ther throwing bombs against us like last season,cant believe bonita gave you guys that game last year,we beat every team who beat us last season now its your turn,dont worry about getting beat up against w/c/ they dont hit hard,just hold on long.
    go bearcats we have something in common mad math ,one day at a time

  • JG

    KH grapes are a little sour huh!!!

  • footballer

    Rowland better be ready for Bonita on friday night. Rowland coaches need to substitute for players going both ways giving the boys rest. If that happens it may be a good game. From what I’ve seen Rowland needs to blitz Bonita on every play sending #13, #42 AND #50. They need to hit the big Qb on every play. He cannot take a hit. He gets up slow every time he gets hit and looses focus. If Rowland lets Bonita Qb drop back sit in the pocket untouched he will pick you apart the way #14 Qb of Diamond Bar High School did. If Bonita is smart they should start Spathias.

  • Dan

    Pretty weak dude, let it go already.
    GP had an off night! WC was holding all night! WC doesn’t hit hard! If we only scored while in the red zone! Yadda Yadda Yadda. What other excuses are you going to find? You tend to see things your way no matter what really happens on the field. Did it occur to you that you didn’t score in the red zone because you ran out of room in the red zone. Our defense has tightened up for most of the year in the red zone. When your boys moved on us it was mostly in the middle of the field. When they reached the redzone there wasn’t as much space, same thing happened to South Hills, Venice and Rowland when they played us. Your line had little push for the run game and WC was able to cover the limited space in the endzone. The couple times their was an opening we had GP under pressure and caused him to force his throws, thats why he had a couple overthrows and that same pressure caused him to throw into coverage a few times resulting in pics. Over all he had a pretty good night considering the heavy pressure WC had on him. Its time to move on KH, let it go.

  • kh

    if w/c/ is that good bring home the cif.we will wait and see.
    i still say it goes thru bonita to win it all.

  • footballer

    kh, Bonita will loose in the 1st round of the playoffs Bonita is over rated. If Rowland comes out in the fast and ready Bonita will be in trouble.

  • Dan

    Did not mention in my post how good we are, nor that we’re CIF title good, that remains to be proven, there is some pretty good teams out there
    including Diamond Ranch who we play this Friday, they are always a threat that can take out any team in the division on any given Friday, so as of now I don’t think WC is thinking much about a CIF title. Even though our boys put a whipping on your’s, I still think Bonita is one of the better teams in the division, I don’t believe your boy’s are as bad as they showed on Friday and if both teams meet in the post season it will be a tighter game. Now can you lay off the excuses already, we gotta move on!!!

  • bob bradstreet

    Go, Bulldogs. What a team. I go to every game with a pain in my gut,but come away to Carrows.

  • Wells

    K.H. — enough is enough.

    I have seen Bonita play twice this season. Once, when they beat DB by 30 and when WC beat them by 30. After watching both games there are a couple of similarities. Both losing teams gained nearly the same amount of yardage (Bonita 348 yrds; DB 334 yds). Also, both games were tied at the end of one quarter.

    If some DB fan would have come on these blogs saying that the Bohi/DB game was close and that if DB had been the recipient of a couple of breaks then they would have won, K.H. would have been the first to blast that guy as a crybaby and a complainer.

    Anyone that actually understands football (not the usual clowns that just rip teams, coaches and players to compensate for their own inadequacies) would have seen that WC was definitely the better team. Bonita will have to make serious adjustments if they are to give WC a better game.

    It will be a great final two weeks of the Hacienda League.

    And K.H., you are probably a great guy who just wants the best for your son’s team. Just be more objective.

    I will bet that you are a guy that would love to have a beer at the Warehouse. If this is accurate, I will be the first guy to sit down with you after we play soccer at Bohi…we can talk about football. The NFL playoffs will be in full swing.

  • SGV For 30 Years

    This is football. There is holding on every play. If Officals called every holding penalty we would have to start games at 4:00 because they would last 5 hours. It’s all about how you hold. Dude it’s time for you to let last weeks game go. It’s over nothing you can do. You just flat out got beat by a better team. Bigger, Faster, and Stronger. Would you rather that first loss comes now or in the play-offs? At least now you get to play the next week. I’m interested in seeing how the Bearcats bounce back against Rowland. It will also be interesting how Rowland plays when they are playing for their play-off lives. Does anyone know if Ball is playing this week? I haven’t heard anything from the Rowland camp.

    SGV430 Ouuuttt!!

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