MVP: Chris Reyes, Damien, Jr. FIRST TEAM
Andrew Ortiz, Ayala, Sr.
Josh Ramirez, Ayala, Jr.
Josiah Thropay, Charter Oak, Sr.
A.J. Hecox, Chino Hills, Sr.
Warren Ondatje, Chino Hills, Sr.
John Paul Chakbazof, Damien, Sr.
Gian-Franco-Demano, Damien, Sr.
Clayton White, Damien Jr.
FOR SECOND TEAM, CLICK THREAD
MVP: Savannah Selby, Jr. St. Lucy’s FIRST TEAM
Christa Carrillo, Ayala, So.
Sharon Lee, Ayala, Sr.
Lindsey Crawford, Sr.
Chariah Harris, Chino Hills, Sr.
Casey Zinn, Chino Hills, Sr.
Faith Song, Claremont, Sr.
Imani Payton, South Hills, So.
Nicole Zugasti, St. Lucy’s, Sr.
By Keith Lair, Staff Writer
Suffering and trials can lead to jubilation. La Verne Lutheran High School senior Kevin Payne Jr. lost his father in August in a horrific freeway accident. Xavier Jones collapsed during a November practice this season, suffering from heart issues. Saturday afternoon, in the biggest game of his life, Payne found that a pair of 3-point baskets can overcome all that pain and suffering.
He hit key back-to-back 3-pointers to help give the Trojans the CIF State Division III title with a 64-59 victory over Northern California champion Bishop O’Dowd of Oakland at Power Balance Pavilion. (To continue click thread)
Robledo’s reaction:I hope Lutheran is enjoying commenters who still don’t want to give them their just due. For those who still don’t get it, Lutheran didn’t buy there was to anything, they earned it. What they did as an at-large is a remarkable and incredible accomplishment. If you think you can just throw out a basketball to bunch of talented players and win back-to-back state titles you’re mistaken. Just look at your NCAA tournament bracket if you don’t understand, talent only gets you so far, the rest is desire and coaching. At the state level everyone has talented players and D-3 had one of the more stacked brackets of all the divisions. Lutheran worked their butts off and their coaching staff worked their butts off to pull off one of the more remarkable titles in Valley history. Those who don’t appreciate it were never going to appreciate it, they’re mostly haters and a bunch of sour grapes. I don’t care if nobody likes Goliath – but this was no Goliath. Nobody thought Lutheran could win a D-3 title after sneaking into the tournament, and they did it without a home game. They OVER-ACHIEVED to the tune of a SoCal Regional and State title.
Bonita’s Justin Garza looks looks more like a freshman than a junior, generously listed at 5-10, 150 pounds. But I wanted to know about the 3-0 start and 0.37 ERA that people kept raving about on the blog. And I wanted to know how he would respond going against Kenny Mathews, the savvy senior from Diamond Bar who Bonita coach John Knott called, “a once in a decade type pitcher.” Well how’s this for a confidence builder, Garza went the distance against Mathews, pitching a complete game 2-1 victory. He almost had a shutout, giving up his lone run in the seventh. But then he showed his toughness, getting a ground-out to end the game with the tying run on second. Mathews wasn’t a sharp as he normally is. He continually got behind in counts, gave up seven hits and struck out just three, but he was still in the game. Diamond Bar committed four errors, but it was the play that got away that cost them. Mathews’ pick-off attempt with two outs in the fourth inning beat Bonita’s Mark Lindsay back to first, but the ball was dropped. That new life allowed Conor Vislay to answer with a double that scored Lindsay, followed by Thomas Castro’s single that scored Vislay. It wasn’t much, but thanks to Garza, it was enough. It also makes you wonder, whenever towering 6-8 Adam McCreery gets the green light, they’ll have 1 and 1A. That’s scary with the offense they already have.
COVERAGE COMPLAINERS: Johnny “Nut & Honey” Honell covered yesterday’s game and sent me another laughable email of his pregame conversations with fans watching with him, Honell emailing to me: “I had two people from Charter Oak and one from Damien ask me what the (bleep) we were doing covering spring football. One said something like: ‘you used a third of the page for spring football and we can’t get any spring sports like baseball and softball, you guys are idiots.'” … You know you can’t win when people complain about coverage at a game you’re covering …
GAME STORY By John Honell, Correspondent
Even Ernie “Let’s play two” Banks would have hesitated to play two in the frigid weather at Damien High School on Thursday afternoon. The Spartans baseball team (4-4 overall, 2-1 league), ranked sixth by this newspaper, had to go extra innings to pull out a 6-5 win over No. 2 Charter Oak. The teams are now tied for second place in the Sierra League, one game behind Chino Hills.
Glendora is keeping mum on its next coaching hire after Mark Pasquarella’s recent resignation. Soon after the football season ended, I heard that La Puente coach and former Glendora assistant Brandon Rohrer was a lock to be named the next coach, but the school is dragging its feet. Apparently, the school might be waiting on Pasquarella to make another decision, which could be leaving the school entirely for an administrative position elsewhere, which would free up a teaching position to go with the football job. If Pasquarella remains at Glendora, it’s possible the Tartans may have to hire a walk-on, which is probably why a coach hasn’t been named yet. If the Tartans go the walk-on route, I can’t think of a better person than former Monrovia coach Steve Garrison, who took the ‘Cats to three straight title games in the 90s and knows his stuff as well as anyone. Garrison coveted the Glendora position a few years back and lives in Glendora. He still teaches at Monrovia but is currently a walk-on assistant at Northview, but should that opportunity at Glendora become available, he would be a good fit given the Tartans situation.
In other games of note …Diamond Bar beat Diamond Ranch 6-1 in preparation of Friday’s showdown against Bonita. West Covina edged Walnut 2-1…In the MVL, Arroyo clobbered Rosemead 11-0 (Mark Roche with a homer and pitched a two-hitter) and Mountain View beat El Monte 6-3.
By Miguel A. Melendez, Staff Writer
Just about every element was covered Tuesday afternoon at La Salle High School – from first-inning controversy to sixth-inning comedy to a bizarre ending in the seventh. The same could be said about the weather – cold, dry, windy and wet. It culminated when the umpire suspended the game for the second time because of rain, leaving Bishop Amat’s 9-4 lead over La Salle to be settled in three weeks with one out in the bottom of the seventh.
By Fred J. Robledo, Staff Writer
Dekota Monarrez isn’t going to overwhelm anyone with her velocity, but on a cold, rainy afternoon in which it was a challenge just to get a good grip on the ball, the West Covina High School pitcher didn’t seem bothered at all. Monarrez gave up a run in the first inning and scattered three hits, and that was good enough as West Covina overwhelmed host Walnut for a 14-1 victory in a mercy-rule-shortened five- inning game.