Boys Hoops: Damien wins big over J.W. North, 53-36; Chris Reyes named tournament MVP

By Fred J. Robledo
After blowing past locals Wilson, Northview and Rowland, Damien took care of business in the championship of the 58th annual Covina High School Christmas Tournament against one of the beasts of the Inland Empire, knocking off Riverside’s J.W. North 53-36 on Thursday.

Damien’s St. Mary’s-bound forward/center Chris Reyes had another
big night, finishing with 19 points, 12 rebounds and four blocks, which included a thunderous two-handed dunk early in the fourth that punctuated his dominating performance around the rim.

“They’re a big, physical team, it was nice playing the way we did against them,” said Reyes, named the tournament MVP. “We played a game like this last year in a tournament against Harvard-Westlake. It’s good playing these type teams.”

Spartans sharpshooter Jared Dizon was deadly too. He buried three
3-pointers and finished with a game-high 20 points.

Damien improved to 13-1 and J.W. North, which received a game-high 15 points from Aaron Peck, dropped to 10-3. (To continue click thread)

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Girls Hoops: Covina no match against Wilson in championship of the Rowland tourament

Matching up teams from the same league for a tournament championship can get some surprising results.

The Lady Raiders Christmas Classic girls basketball tournament at Rowland High School was no exception.

Defending Valle Vista League champion Wilson knocked off preseason league favorite Covina, ranked second in CIF-Southern Section Division 3A, 45-18 for the title Thursday night.

The Wildcats defense held high-scoring Ashli Badorf to three points. Badorf was averaging 18 points per game coming into the contest.

“It wasn’t what I expected,” Wildcats coach Tracy Calton said. “They’re very tough inside and they like to drive to the basket. We did a good job of packing in our zone and took that away from them.”

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Girls Hoops: Duarte’s Yasmine Wilson dominates in Glendora tourney title game, finishing with 27 points and 23 rebounds in win over Eagle Rock

Duarte High School point guard Imari Brown admits she was not on top of her game.

It did not matter. Yasmine Wilson was there to rescue the Falcons.

The senior center scored four consecutive baskets in a key stretch of the fourth quarter to propel Duarte to the Glendora Tournament championship for the second consecutive year, holding off Eagle Rock, 66-63, on Thursday night.

“We’ve been trying to do that for the last three years,” Duarte coach Mark Smith said of getting the ball to Wilson.

“Normally we’ve got Imari Brown and she goes wild. They had her number and that’s OK. We have other weapons.”

The Falcons took advantage of the Eagles’ lack of height. Wilson scored 27 points with all of her field goals made from underneath the basket. She also had 23 rebounds.

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Duarte’s Imari Brown scores 31 points to lead the Falcons to a 55-37 win over Glendora to reach Thursday’s championship against Eagle Rock

By Fred J. Robledo, Staff Writer
It’s difficult to understand why the Duarte High School girls basketball wasn’t ranked in the CIF-Southern Section Division 4AA preseason poll.
All the Falcons did last year was finish 25-3, advance to the divisional quarterfinals, earn an invitation to the state playoffs and return all five starters, including Tribune first-team selection Imari Brown, who nearly averaged a quadruple-double as a sophomore. And despite a sore ankle, the junior is at it again.
Brown finished with 31 points, seven rebounds, eight steals and three assists in Duarte’s 55-37 victory over host Glendora to finish undefeated in Pool B of the Glendora girls basketball tournament on Wednesday, earning the Falcons a ticket to tonight’s championship against Eagle Rock at 7:30 p.m., at Glendora High School. (To continue click thread).

Glendora Girls Basketball Holiday Tournament
Monday’s round-robin results
Eagle Rock 59, La Serna 49
Schurr 40, Claremont 29
Duarte 65, Hoover 32
Glendora 37, Charter Oak 35
Tuesday’s round-robin
Duarte 57, Charter Oak 43
Eagle Rock 44, Schurr 40
La Serna 44, Claremont 39
Glendora 61, Hoover 29
Wednesday’s round-robin
Eagle Rock vs. Claremont, 3 p.m.
Schurr vs. La Serna, 4:30 p.m.
Hoover vs. Charter Oak, 6 p.m.
Duarte vs. Glendora, 7:30 p.m.
Championship on Thursday, 7:30 p.m., at Glendora

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Rose Bowl Updates: Wilson is Badgers’ X-Factor


Associated Press photo

As part of our coverage of the 98th Rose Bowl Game, here’s my story on Wisconsin’s Russell Wilson:

LOS ANGELES – There are a lot elements that were key for Wisconsin as the Badgers returned to the Rose Bowl Game
The X-factor is quarterback Russell Wilson, who is not a typical Wisconsin signal caller.
Wilson, a senior transfer from North Carolina State, added athleticism to a position that for years required nothing special, just someone who minimized mistakes while guiding an offense that used its mammoth front line and big running backs such as Ron Dayne and John Clay as focal points.
Wilson, at least for this season, changed that perception.
“The true sign of a great player is someone who can make something out of nothing,” said Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema, whose Badgers face Oregon in the 98th Rose Bowl Game on Monday. “A lot of times it might be a call offensively where the scheme for the success of that play shuts down and you have to make a change.
“Russell has made changes this year on first, second, third and even fourth down that have allowed us to stay alive and make a play.”
Wilson’s biggest audible came not at Camp Randall Stadium, but off the field.
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Boys Hoops: Damien too big and too good for Northview again; Rowland fends off California to meet Spartans in Wednesday’s semifinals; Covina beats South Hills at the buzzer

By Fred J. Robledo, Staff Writer
Northview High School boys basketball coach Ron Rice shrugged trying to come up with a reasonable answer. Northview is one of the top teams in the area, but Damien is on another level entirely, which it proved again with a 59-39 victory over the Vikings in the quarterfinals of the 58th annual Covina Christmas tournament on Tuesday.
Damien (11-1) will take on Rowland, a 59-50 winner over California in the semifinals tonight at 7 p.m., at Covina High School. (To continue click thread)

Covina wins on buzzer-beater: The oldest boys basketball tournament west of the Mississippi River has had its share of great finishes, but none arguably were better than a 3-point buzzer-beater by Edgardo Campos that gave Covina a 55-52 win over South Hills in the 58th annual Covina Christmas Tournament on Tuesday night.

The 58th Annual Covina Christmas Tournament began Monday and we will update each morning throughout the tournament.

Tonight’s semifinal games
Rowland vs. Damien, 7 p.m.
Covina vs. J.W. North, 8:30 p.m.

Monday’s first-round results
Top Bracket
California 64, Bosco Tech 37
Rowland 75, Azusa 49
Northview 76, Garey 54
Damien 59, Wilson 42
Bottom Bracket
Bishop Amat 51, Los Altos 45
JW North 69, Charter Oak 49
South Hills 71, Jurupa Hills 49
Covina 66, Sierra Vista 52

Tuesday’s quarterfinals
Top Bracket
Rowland 59, California 50
Damien 59, Northview 39
Bottom Bracket
JW North 54, Bishop Amat 36
Covina 55, South Hills 52
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Boys Hoops: Nogales Christmas Tournament

The Nogales High School Boys Basketball Tournament begins on Monday and concludes with Thursday’s championship on Dec. 29 at Nogales High at 7:30 p.m. This is an old-school bracket-style knockout tournament, just the way I like it……

Monday, Dec. 26 first-round at Nogales High
Top Half Bracket

Walnut vs. Alta Loma, 6:30 p.m.
Nipomo vs. Notre Dame, Noon
La Mirada vs. Don Lugo, 1:45 p.m.
Renaissance Academy vs. El Rancho, 3:30 p.m.
Bottom Half
Serrano vs. Bloomington Christian, 10:30 a.m.
West Covina vs. La Serna, 5 p.m.
Savanna vs. Glenn, 9 a.m.
Basett vs. Nogales, 8 p.m.

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San Gabriel Valley Tribune’s 2011 All-Area Football Team: Arroyo’s Steven Rivera, Charter Oak’s Travis Santiago and West Covina’s Justen Meaders earn top honors; West Covina’s Mike Maggiore named coach of the year

To read Steven Rivera’s players of the year story along with Travis Santiago and Justen Meaders’ offensive and defensive honors, and Mike Maggiore’s coach of the year story, click the thread.

RIVERA .. MAGGIORE …. MEADERS .. SANTIAGO

Player of the year: Steven Rivera, Arroyo, Sr.
Coach of the year: Mike Maggiore, West Covina
Offensive Player of the Year: Travis Santiago, Charter Oak, Sr.
Defensive Player of the Year: Justen Meaders, West Covina, Sr.
First Team Offense
QB — Travis Santiago, Charter Oak, Sr.
RB — Jalen Moore, Bishop Amat, Sr.
RB — Jimmy Frazier, West Covina, Sr.
WR — Hunter Duran, Arroyo, Sr.
WR — Aaren Vaughns, Charter Oak, Jr.
WR — Jamie Canada, South Hills, Sr.
ALL — Vinny Venegas, Covina, Sr.
OL — Jesse Gaytan, El Monte, Sr.
OL — Alec Zenner, San Dimas, Sr.
OL — Nick Enriquez, Chino Hills, Sr.
OL — George Castro, West Covina, Sr.
OL — Louis Oliva, Charter Oak, Sr.
K — Jack Schneider, Charter Oak, Jr.
First Team Defense
DL — Nick Hynes, Covina, Sr.
DL — Philip Romano, Covina, Sr.
DL — Justen Meaders, West Covina, Sr.
LB — Dorrin Turner, West Covina, Sr.
LB — Johnny Padilla, Covina, Sr.
LB — Justin Fa;’aola, Los Altos, Sr.
LB — Alex Arevalo, Damien, Sr.
DB — Desmond Reed, Azusa, Sr.
DB — Michael Patini, La Puente, Sr.
DB — Chris Solomon, West Covina, Sr.
DB — Jonathan Thropay, Charter Oak, Sr.
P — Brian Drulias, Diamond Bar, Sr.

Second Team Offense
QB — Billy Livingston, Covina, Sr.
RB — Kurt Scoby, Charter Oak, So.
RB — Sir Darius Yarbrough, Pomona, Sr.
WR — Chris Gilchrist, Charter Oak, Sr.
WR — Justin Mason, Covina, Sr.
WR — Jack Austin, Chino Hills, Jr.
ALL — Dillon Corona, San Dimas, Sr.
OL — Lake Aiono, South Hills, Jr.
OL — Jared Kough, Pomona, Sr.
OL — Moises Morales, Los Altos, Sr.
OL — Raymond Amaya, West Covina, Sr.
OL — Adrian Pena, La Puente, Sr.
K — Brandt Davis, Bonita, Jr.
Second team Defense
DL — Sal Velasquez, Bishop Amat, Jr.
DL — Logan Tracey, Damien, Sr.
DL — Jesse Ojeda, San Dimas, Sr.
LB — Skyler Crall, Glendora, Sr.
LB — Naim Colbert, Chino Hills, Sr.
LB — D.J. Daniels, Bishop Amat, Jr.
LB — Matt Eddy, Rosemead, Sr.
DB — Lonzel Barnett, West Covina, Sr.
DB — Khari Garcia, Charter Oak, Jr.
DB — Ajee Montes, Bishop Amat, Sr.
DB — Garrett Horine, Bonita, Sr.
P — Jose Esparza, Rosemead, Sr.

Tribune players of the Year (1969-present)
1969 Fred McNeil, Baldwin Park RB
1970 Pat Haden, Bishop Amat QB and John McKay Jr., Bishop Amat WR
1971 Mike Vicino, Royal Oak RB
1972 Rob Hertel, Los Altos QB and Ron Himes, Walnut QB
1973 Dennis Sproul, Los Altos QB
1974 Brian Bethke, South Hills QB
1975 Richard Nyden, Azusa QB
and John Van Vuren, South Hills RB
1976 Bob Epps, West Covina DL
1977 Don Roberts, Temple City RB
1978 Ron Stivers, West Covina RB
1979 Ray McNeill, El Monte WR
and Danny Trejo, Baldwin Park WR
1980 Bill Stone, Royal Oak RB
1981 Blake Smith, Los AltosQB
and Steve Lauter, Los Altos WR
1982 Mike Smith, Los Altos QB
1983 Randy Tanner, Bishop Amat; Paul Hewitt, Monrovia
1984 Michael Johnson, Baldwin Park QB
1985 Eric Bieniemy, Bishop AmatRB
1986 Eric Bieniemy, Bishop Amat RB
1987 Bill Gallis, Northview QB
1988 Jason Martin, Los Altos TE/DB
1989 Marshawn Thompson, Bassett RB
1990 Jason Patterson, Bishop Amat FB/DE
1991 Marc Ruiz, Baldwin ParkQB
1992 Lawrence Phillips, Baldwin Park RB-DB
1993 Miguel Meriwether, West Covina QB/DB
1994 Daylon McCutcheon, Bishop Amat RB/FS
1995 Oscar Interiano, Sierra Vista RB
1996 Oscar Arzu, Sierra Vista RB
1997 Nick Covarrubias, Covina QB/DB
1998 Steve Stevenson, Charter Oak WR/RB/DB
1999 Jason Wright, Diamond Bar, RB/DB
2000 – Felipe Aguilar, Los Altos, QB
2001 – Donnie McCleskey, Bishop Amat RB
2002 – Daniel Drayton, Randall Brown, Los Altos RBs/DBs
2003 – Brigham Harwell, Los Altos DE
2004 – William Wagner, Bishop Amat RB
2005 – Mike McDonough, Covina QB
2006 – Mike McDonough, Covina QB
2007 – Dorian Wells, South Hills, RB
2008 – Chris Allen, Charter Oak, RB
2009 – Adam Muema, Charter Oak, RB
2010 – Chris Solomon, West Covina, RB
2011 – Steven Rivera, Arroyo, QB

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Two assistant coaches from state champion Santa Margarita football team convicted of misdemeanor marijuana possession in September, but still coached the rest of the season

The Orange County Register reports that the two assistant coaches were arrested last December and convicted in September, but they remained with the Santa Margarita football team the remainder of the year, including the state championship....From the Orange County Register: Two football coaches of the Santa Margarita state championship football team were convicted of misdemeanor marijuana possession charges during the season, a spokeswoman for the Orange County District Attorney’s office confirmed Thursday. Both participated as Santa Margarita varsity football assistant coaches when the team won CIF-Southern Section and CIF State championship games this month.

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Boys Basketball: Grant Jerrett named tournament MVP in prestigious Chick-Fil-A tournament in South Carolina; Trojans finish third, defeating Lower Richland, 64-56

Mighty La Verne Lutheran defeated South Carolina’s Lower Richland 64-56 to finish third in the Chick-Fil-A Tournament in South Carolina, which is considered one of the most prestigious high school tournaments in the country. Arizona-bound Grant Jerrett finished with 25 points and 9 rebounds in the Trojans’ win over Lower Richland, and was named the Tournament MVP — quite an accomplishment considering MVPs normally go to the tournament champion. Lutheran’s Mckay Anderson had five 3-pointers to go with his 22 points and nine rebounds to help the Trojans’ win. Eric Eves scored 18 points and Vincent Hicklin contributed 16 points for Lower Richland.

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Boys Hoops: Glendora awaiting the return of super junior Nick Colletta; Covina Boys Basketball tournament starts Monday

By Aram Tolegian, Staff Writer
Fans of the Glendora High School boys basketball team may get a late Christmas present this year with the expected return of standout Nick Colletta when the Tartans resume their season on Monday.

Colletta has been dealing with a back injury that’s limited him to just two games and very few practices since Nov. 1. The 6-foot-5 junior forward who led the Tartans in scoring last season may be back when the team starts the Century Tournament right after the holiday.

“The bad news is he’s been out for the better part of six weeks,” Glendora coach Mike LeDuc said. “He’s hopefully going to be released to start working out again right after Christmas, and if everything goes well he will hopefully be able to start playing again right after Christmas.”

If Colletta returns, the Tartans soon could be the healthiest they’ve been this season. Glendora has dealt with injuries at other key spots but managed to start the season with an 8-3 record. Two of the losses were by one point.

With only the Century Tournament and a nonleague game against Ontario left before league play, Glendora will have to put things together quickly to be ready for the difficult challenges that lay ahead in the Baseline League. Glendora opens league play at home on Jan. 10 against powerful Etiwanda.

“Obviously we have no choice but to find the positive side to this,” LeDuc said. “The truth is we’d much rather have the chemistry of playing together. That would be a greater positive. We didn’t have that situation the past six weeks, so we’re doing the best we can to turn it into a positive and be competitive.

“I think we were (competitive). Two of our three losses were by one point and we don’t feel we played very well in either game.”

Colletta averaged 24 points per game last season.

Up for the challenge
After winning last week’s Pride of the Foothills Tournament, Damien has its sights set on taking on another local event when the Spartans begin play in the Covina Tournament on Monday.

Damien (9-1) is one of the favorites to win, but it won’t be easy with the presence of talented J.W. North. The Spartans open play against Wilson at 2:30 p.m. on Monday.

Damien coach Matt Dunn knows what type of game he’ll get out of his players will be anybody’s guess considering they will have spent the previous day opening gifts and eating with family.

“I would say the ugliest day of basketball every year is December 26,” Dunn said. “It’s a really tough day for kids to play, I think. Teams always do not play their best.

“But we’ve been telling our guys that this is the best time of year to be a basketball player because all you have to do is play basketball. This is fun for our guys.”

Damien could match up with Northview again if both teams win their opening games. The Spartans just beat the Vikings in the championship game of the Pride of the Foothills Tournament. That may be a nice game for local fans, but Dunn isn’t exactly excited about the prospect of seeing Northview again.

“If it works out we have to play Northview again, that would be twice in a one-week span and that would be a little scary,” Dunn said. “This is the first time we’ve ever been in the Covina Tournament and I think our guys are excited. It’s got a nice mix of local teams and teams from out of the area.

“I think it’s a really good field. I haven’t seen J.W. North, but from everything I’ve been told they’re very good.”

Upset special?

Rowland very well could be the wild card in the Covina Tournament field.

The Raiders are 7-4 and had some close losses to end the Pride of the Foothills Tournament. One of those defeats was against Bishop Amat, which also is in the Covina Tournament.

The Raiders have beaten South Hills, which also is in the tournament. If Rowland gets hot from the perimeter, coach Gordon Hamlow’s team could make a run.

“You’re spending all your time right now trying to develop your offense and your defense,” Hamlow said. “Every one of these games is an opportunity to get prepared for league.

“This tournament is important because we have to put all the pieces together. We’ve had a couple of pieces out and getting them back would make us better than we were last week.”

Rowland appears to be on the fringe of the area’s upper-echelon teams such as Damien, Glendora (when healthy), Northview and La Verne Lutheran. But when the Raiders are shooting well from distance, they can prove awfully dangerous.

“I think we shoot the ball as well as anybody. It’s just going to be matter of how we defend,” Hamlow said.

Rowland has attempted a whopping 189 3-pointers this season in just 11 games. The Raiders have made 60 of them.

“It’s more than we’ve taken in the past, but we think that’s one of our strengths,” Hamlow said. “We have some pretty good outside shooters. It’s not just one or two guys. We think we have several guys who can hit the outside shots.

“Last week, we didn’t get as well of interior play than we needed. If we get balance, I think that’s when we’re at our best. We lose to Amat last week and make nine out of 20 3s. It wasn’t our shooting. It was our inability to defend as well in the second half.”

COVINA CHRISTMAS TOURNAMENT
Monday’s First-Round games at Covina High School
Top Bracket

Bosco Tech vs. California, 10 a.m.
Rowland vs. Azusa, 11:30 a.m.
Northview vs.Garey, 1 p.m.
Wilson vs. Damien, 2:30 p.m.
Bottom Bracket
J.W. North vs. Charter Oak, 4 p.m.
Bishop Amat vs. Los Altos, 5:30 p.m.
South Hills vs. Jurupa Hills, 7 p.m.
Covina vs. Sierra Vista, 8:30 p.m.

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All Serra League Football: Bishop Amat’s Jalen Moore earns first team second straight year

Serra All-League Football
Most Valuable Player
: Kyle DeVaugn (Alemany)
Most Valuable Defensive Player: Eamon McKosker (Loyola)
Most Valuable Offensive players: Steven Mitchell (Alemany), Kodi Whitfield (Loyola)
Most Valuable Lineman: Jordan Simmons (Crespi)
First Team Offense
Backs: Jalen Moore (Bishop Amat)
Backs: Mike Davison (Crespi)
Backs: Khalfani Muhammad (Notre Dame)
Backs: Devon Dunn (Alemany)
WR: Chaz Anderson (Loyola)
WR: Chris Harper (Crespi)
WR: Sam Robinson (Notre Dame)
OL: Travis Harvey (Loyola)
OL: Josue Najera (Notre Dame)
OL: Kyle Sulka (Notre Dame)
OL: Stephen Hutchinson (Crespi)
OL: Tyler Ansoms (Alemany)
OL: John Trice (Alemany)
PK: Pat Casserly (Crespi)
First Team Defense
DL: Lester Cienfuegos (Alemany)
DL: Kourey Gabriel (Crespi)
DL: Josh Anderson (Notre Dame)
DL: Sal Velasquez (Bishop Amat)
LB: Quentin Tartabull (Alemany)
LB: JJ Muno (Notre Dame)
LB: LJ Wilkerson (Crespi)
LB: Tim Patricio (Loyola)
DB: Tyler Forman (Crespi)
DB: Ajee Montes (Bishop Amat)
DB: Jerico Richardson (Alemany)
DB: Cameron Walker (Loyola)
DB: Nick Holland (Notre Dame)
P: Conrad Ikropina (Loyola)

Second Team Offense
Backs: Rio Ruiz (Bishop Amat), Robert Jenkins (Loyola), Nick Cotton (Loyola)
WR: Jack Neuheisel (Loyola), Zach Shay (Bishop Amat), Devin Ross (Alemany).
OL: Jacob Spear (Crespi), Coleman Shelton (Loyola), Eric Cuevas (Loyola), LeRoy Tanoai (Notre Dame), Philip Castellanos (Bishop Amat), Aubry Jackson (Alemany)
Second Team Defense
DL: Deyon Glass (Alemany), Nick Mortle (Loyola), Cameron Wall (Bishop Amat), Derick Turner (Notre Dame)
LB: Bryce Henderson (Alemany), Anthony Gutierrez (Notre Dame), DJ Daniels (Bishop Amat), Vernon Yancy (Loyola), Kenan Stevenson (Loyola).
DB: Noah Cecil (Crespi), Deron Smith (Alemany), Dionza Blue (Bishop Amat), Darren Andrews (Bishop Amat), Matt McNab (Notre Dame).
P: Dylan Pritchard (Notre Dame)

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