Girls Soccer playoffs: Oh my, if Walnut wins, they face No. 2 Bishop Amat in first round of D-3

Robledo: Remember what I wrote about Walnut a couple weeks back. I still feel the same way, they can beat anyone.

By Fred J. Robledo, Staff Writer
With Walnut High School, one of the traditional girls soccer powers over the last decade fading to fourth in the Hacienda League after several closes losses down the stretch, Bishop Amat coach Ruben Gonzalez feared his league champion Lancers might pay the price when the CIF-Southern Section Division 3 pairings were announced on Monday.
Turns out he was right. Walnut lost four of its final five games by a goal, but it finished 12-9-2 overall, which included a penalty shootout victory over Glendora to win its own tournament in January. (To continue story and view pairings, click thread).

The Mustangs were still good enough to reach the playoffs and will host Golden League fourth-place finisher Highland (6-8-5) in a wild-card game today at 3 p.m., with the winner facing second seed Bishop Amat (22-1) in the first-round of the Division 3 playoffs on Thursday.
Walnut, which won three consecutive titles earlier this decade, has to win first. But if it does, Gonzalez knows it would be facing the classic definition of a sleeper.
“I was talking to one of our division coordinators before the pairings and I said Walnut isn’t a team you want to face in the first round,” Gonzalez said. “They’re better than several second or third-place teams.
“If a couple breaks had gone their way they could have easily finished second, third or better in the Hacienda. Of course they have to win to get us, but for a seeded team, it doesn’t get any tougher than having to play a team like Walnut if that’s who we get.’
Bishop Amat’s lone loss came against Sierra League champion and top-seed Ayala (17-4-3), who defeated the Lancers 6-2 in an early December game when the Lancers’ entire backline was out sick.
“Even though we lost to them, they have four losses and three ties,” Gonzalez said. “Given the circumstances of how we lost, I thought we deserved the top seed. We’ve only lost one game all year and we were No. 1 for a while after the loss. But hey, with a No. 2 seed you can’t complain. You have to go out and beat who’s in front of you.”
Battle-tested Los Altos (17-3-4) won the Hacienda League and will be home in Thursday’s first-round against PAC 7 third-place finisher Arroyo Grande.
Los Altos is hoping for a possible semifinal rematch with Bishop Amat, who beat the Conquerors 3-1 back in December.
In other Division 3 first-round games, Sierra League runner-up St. Lucy’s is at home against Yorba Linda, Bonita is home against Sultana and Claremont is on the road against Quartz Hill.
Glendora advanced to the Division 2 playoffs by finishing third in the tough Baseline League. The Tartans will be on the road in the first-round against Southwestern League champion Great Oak.
Montview League champion Sierra Vista, which won a Division 7 championship last year, is hoping to make a run at the Division 6 title.
The Dons’ first-round game Thursday is against Academy league third-place finisher Sage Hill.
Valle Vista League co-champion Northview, which features the Southern Section’s leading goal scorer, Khalalah Todd (46 goals), is home against San Jacinto in the first-round.
In other Division 6 first-round games, San Dimas hosts La Puente in an area showdown while Gladstone hits the road against Cate, Wilson travels to Beaumont and Nogales goes to Segerstrom.
Ganesha, which finished third in the Montview, also is on the road at Garden Grove.
In Division 7, Mission Valley League champ Arroyo is home against the winner from Wednesday’s wild-card winner between Kern Valley and St. Paul.
Mission Valley runner-up South El Monte is home against Alhambra and Mountain View is on the road against in a wild card against Riverside Notre Dame.

CIF-Southern Section Girls Soccer Pairings
Division 2
Friday’s first round
All games at 3 p.m.

Top Bracket
Winner wild card A at #1 Palos Verdes
Troy at Lakewood
Santa Barbara at Westlake
Chaparral at Corona Santiago
Long Beach Poly at Upland
Agoura at Murrieta Valley
King at Crescenta Valley
Winner wild card B at #4 Buena
Bottom Bracket
Winner wild card C at #3 Long Beach Wilson
Mira Costa at Dos Pueblos
Glendora at Great Oak
Corona at Sunny Hills
Sonora at Riverside Poly
Arcadia at Newbury Park
Burbank Burroughs at Peninsula
Winner wild card D at #2 Los Osos

Division 3
Tuesday’s wild card
All games at 3 p.m.

E–Highland at Walnut
Thursday’s first-round
All games at 3 p.m.

Top Bracket
Winner wild card A at #1 Ayala
Silverado at Lakewood St. Joseph
Diamond Bar at Flintridge Prep
Cerritos at Cypress
Winner wild card B at Righetti
Sultana at Bonita
Claremont at Quartz Hill
Winner wild card C at #4 La Mirada
Bottom Bracket
Winner wild card D at #3 Granite Hills
Lancaster at Pasadena Poly
Apple Valley at Garden Grove Pacifica
Arroyo Grande at Los Altos
Mayfield at Serrano
Yorba Linda at St. Lucy’s
Artesia at Santa Maria St. Joseph
Winner wild card E at #2 Bishop Amat

Division 6
Thursday’s first-round
All games at 3:15 p.m.
Top Bracket

Santa Ana at #1 St. Margaret’s
Gladstone at Cate
Pomona Catholic at South Pasadena
Wilson at Beaumont
San Jacinto at Northview
San Gabriel Mission at Ocean View
San Marino at Los Amigos
Sage Hill at #4 Sierra Vista
Bottom Bracket
Loara at #3 Alverno
La Puente at San Dimas
Tahquitz at Crean Lutheran
Garden Grove Santiago at La Canada
Sacred Heart of Jesus at Laguna Blanca
Nogales at Segerstrom
Ganesha at Garden Grove
Coast Union at #2 Hemet

Division 7
Tuesday’s wild-card
All games at 3:15 p.m.

C–Alhambra at South El Monte
F–Mountain View at Riverside Notre Dame/
Thursday’s first-round
All games at 3:15 p.m.

Winner wild card A at #1 St. Genevieve
Winner wild card B at Vistamar
Winner wild card C at Milken
Connelly at Citrus Valley
Winner wild card D at Animo Leadership
Winner wild card E at Bishop
Academy for Academic Excellence at Desert Hot Springs
Winner wild card F at #4 Mary Star
Bottom Bracket
Winner wild card G at #3 Sierra Canyon
Winner wild card H at University Prep
Firebaugh at Bell Gardens
Winner wild card I at Arroyo
Winner wild card J at Viewpoint
Winner wild card K at Saddleback Valley Christian
Frazier Mountain at Santa Clarita Christian
Winner wild card L at #2 Rim of the World

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  • Strength of Schedule

    Boohoo Coach G! You guys play a creampuff schedule and then bitch when you don’t get the #1 seed? Honestly…other than Ayala and LA, who did you play this year that was worth a crap? You enter these sleep-walker tournaments and then wonder why you get no respect? Try playing some consistent competition. THEN if you go 22-1 maybe we’ll be impressed!

    Go Mustangs!

  • LA Soccer Dad

    Allright S of S! Way to come out swinging and throwing down the smack at BA before CIF! Although BA beat us (LA) straight up earlier this year and they are a vey fine squad, it is nice to see that other people notice what a watered down schedule they play. I think Walnut would give BA everything they could handle, the Mustangs just need to figure out how to score to compliment thier strong mid-field & defense. I am rooting for Amat though to pull through, LA would love to get a rematch w/ them in the Semi’s if we can both get there.

  • Heads or Tails

    What a difference a toss makes. Boy Northview, sure hope you can make it through that At Large team to the second round to face an awesome #2. And the Saints? Sure getting La Puente at home in the first round is not the worst thing that ever happened to them, but look who they have to go through after that, just some #1 all girls private school from deep pocket Sierra Madre who’s girls have probably been playing together since they were 6 and have every private coach known to mankind. . . . Again. . . . And with a much better record. Maybe next year San Dimas should only pass the ball to one forward?

  • Valle Vista Fan

    Heads or Tails,

    Someone sounds a little bitter. If you knew anything about soccer, you would know that San Jacinto (that at-large team with 17 wins – more wins than your Saints) has been a Div 6 powerhouse for the last 4 years and they would beat La Puente 10 out of 10 times. Northview clearly got the short end of the stick with the 1st round game.

    As far as the toss goes, you have no one to blame but Coach K. Doesn’t she know that tails never fails!?

    Good Luck against Alveno….your going to wish you had that 1 forward to pass to!

  • Heads or Tails

    Yeah, good to know. By the way, Coach K did not call the coin toss, an AD did.

  • Dear Valle Vista Fan

    Are you aware that high school soccer players are only with their teams for four years? Last years Div 6 or 4 or 3 powerhouse for the last 4 or 3 or 2 years could have lost a whole lot of talent over the years and be this years “at large.”:) Gosh, if only we could keep out kids in high school sports forever the same team could win every year. BTW – Go get a life . . . .