San Gabriel Valley Bombshell Breaking News: Bonita’s Justin Garza named to Baseball America’s All-America first-team

The awards just keep on coming for Bonita High School pitcher Justin Garza. Garza was named today a first-team All-American by one of the most respected publications in the business, Baseball America. To put that in perspective, Garza is one of only 16 players nationwide and three from California to make the prestigious first team list. Garza, who was 25-1 over the last two years, led the Bearcats to the Division 3 title in a 5-1 victory over Alhambra. This is why I stated earlier that Garza is the best high school pitcher I ever covered.

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Get ready for a Blog Makeover ..

I’ve been hearing for nearly a year our Blogs are moving from Moveable Type to Word Press and it appears we’re finally ready to make the switch. I received an email today explaining that sometime over the next two to three weeks that our blogs will be unavailable for at least a day, and possibly longer, while the blogs are moved from Moveable Type to World Press. When I receive a firm date on exactly when it will happen, I will pass it on. This will happen to all our blogs at the SGVN, not just this one. From what I understand, everything on the current blogs, including the archives, will be moved to the new blogs, a huge plus in keeping our history on file. One of the biggest questions for all of us is how the comments will work. I’m still not sure, but looking at other word press blogs, there appears to be three options, through Facebook, Twitter or by creating a sign-name through word press, similar to what we already have. This will allow commenters who wish to stay anonymous, stay anonymous, which should make a lot of you extremely happy. From what I understand, Word Press is the best and fastest blog server around, but I don’t know much beyond that, nor do I know how the new blogs will look. I’ll wait in anticipation like the rest..

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The week ahead: All-Area and Football

We unveil the all-area teams this week. Baseball will run in Wednesday’s paper and Softball on Thursday. Boys Tennis will run on Friday, the same day as the Hall of Fame All-Star Football game at West Covina High School. Track and Swimming all-area teams will run on June 27 and 28, respectively. At least that’s the plan.

BTW, I’ve declared that Tijuana’s on San Bernardino Road/Azusa Ave, in Covina have the best taco’s in the San Gabriel Valley.

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ESPN ending big chunk of high school coverage

USA Today reports that ESPN is closing its high school business unit, which includes its ESPNHS.com website, two magazines and its event management service, which staged all-star events and high school games at Disney World. With the closing in mid-September, about 75 staffers will lose their jobs. Also check out Aram’s take on “In the Huddle” at what it means to Southland Coverage.

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Bishop Amat’s Adam Alcantara out for the season

It was widely speculated and now official, Bishop Amat safety Adam Alcantara, arguably the Lancers’ best defensive player, will not play his senior year of football because of knee surgery. Alcantara earned Division 4 first-team honors in baseball despite playing on an injured knee, opting to delay the surgery until the season was finished. He hopes to fully recover in time for the 2013 baseball season.

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Sierra League: South Hills’ Ty France and Chino Hills Nikki Girard earns league MVP honors

Sierra All-League
Baseball
Most Valuable Player: Ty France, South Hills, Sr.
First Team
Robert Longtree, Ayala, Jr., Jordan Robinson, Ayala, Jr., Nick Hernandez, Charter Oak, Fr., Jon Reid, Charter Oak, Jr., Chris Iriart, Chino Hills, Sr., Ken Chapman, Claremont, Sr., Jeremy Giles, Claremont, Jr., David Banuelos, Damien, So., Grant Hockin, Damien, So., Jack Spohn, Damien, Sr., Dan Sheehan, South Hills, Sr., Tony Muiz, South Hills, Jr., CJ Saylor, South Hills, Sr., Adrian Dehorta, South Hills, Jr., Kevin McKelvey, South Hills, Sr.,
Second Team
Vahn Bozoian, Ayala, Sr., Tyler Durna, Ayala, Fr., Zo Carrillo, Charter Oak, So., Oscar Montenegro, Charter Oak, Sr., Aaron Dominguez, Chino Hills, So., Austin Harvey, Chino Hills, Jr., Geo Chavez, Chino Hills, Jr., Bailey Falter, Chino Hills, Fr., Joseph Keller, Chino Hills, Sr., Jeremy Steggell, Chino Hills, Jr., Jeremy Steggell, Chino Hills, Jr., Joe Harris, Claremont, Sr., Nick Costello, Claremont, Jr., Dillon Tate, Claremont, Sr., Eric Quezada, Damien, Sr., Kevin Macedo, Damien, Jr., Michael Montalvo, Damien, Sr., Mike Dlugos, South Hills, Sr.

Softball
Most Valuable Player: Nikki Girard, Chino Hills, Sr.
First Team
Danielle O’Toole, St. Lucy’s, Sr., Danielle Mavridis, St. Lucy’s, Sr., Laura Swan, St. Lucy’s, Sr., Brandi Harkness, St. Lucy’s Sr., Britney Rodriguez, South Hills, Sr., Paige Gumz, Chino Hills, Sr., Garie Blando, Chino Hills, Sr., Patricia Parks, Chino Hills, So., Tannon Snow, Chino HIlls, Fr., Nikki Innamorato, Chino Hills, Sr., Brooke Clemetson, Charter Oak, Sr., Alison Strycula, Charter Oak, Jr., Nicki Sprague, Charter Oak, Jr., Sarah Moore, Ayala, Sr., Alyssa D’Agostino, Ayala, Jr.

Second Team
Morgan Ettinger, Ayala, Jr., Ashley Moore, Ayala, Sr., Sara Ketesleger, Ayala, So., Brianna Celaya, Ayala, Sr., Danielle Velez, Ayala, Jr., Sam Valadez, Charter Oak, Jr., Kayla Papez, Charter Oak, Sr., Shianne Brannan, Chino Hills, So., Nina Gurgian, Claremont, Sr., Alexis Solis, Claremont, So., Kristen Stewart, South Hills, Sr., Brittney Amezquita, South Hills, So., Caroline Smith, St. Lucy’s, Jr., Jazmine Sosa, St. Lucy’s, Sr., Katherine Jimenez, St. Lucy’s, So.

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Your way-to-early-to-predict Spring Super 35 Pre-Summer, Pre-Season Football Poll

Spring is over, it’s time time to concentrate on High School Football. Based on last year and what’s coming back, here is my way-to-early Super 35 Tribune Football rankings. Unlike Aram, I’m seriously considering ranking teams based on who I think is the best, period, because I’ve grown tired of the best pound-for-pound nonsense. If Amat’s 3-7 and La Puente’s 9-1, you know IT DOES NOT MEAN La Puente is better, so why rank ‘em that way. So here ya go.


Above: Amat’s next quarterback, Junior Koa Haynes

Tribune Super 35 Preseason Rankings
1. Bishop Amat – Go ahead and say what you wish, but the fact remains that Amat continually finishes the season with better wins on the resume than anyone else, against a tougher schedule than anyone else, and without a doubt, the best coaching staff in the Valley. Aram loves to point out how Amat has fewer D-1 kids than the Monrovia’s, Charter Oak’s and West Covina’s, so for them to do what they do only proves they have the best coaching staff in the Valley. And in terms of depth, Amat has more than anyone else, which makes up for its lack of game-changers. I’ll change my tune when a Valley team beats Amat, so to Charter Oak and Chino Hills, it’s your turn, you’re up next on the schedule in 2012.
2. West Covina — The Bulldogs are what Charter Oak, South Hills and Los Altos were from the late 90s until Gano left Los Altos and Charter Oak and South Hills were moved to the Sierra — Totally Dominant. Maggiore has won three titles and deserves to be mentioned with the greats in Valley history. And what I love about West Covina is unlike some other public schools, they take their shots at D-1 competition. They’ve played and lost to Mater Dei and Amat in recent years and will get a second shot at Loyola this fall at home. West Covina has more playmakers than anyone in the Valley, but I’m waiting for the Bulldogs’ signature win against a super power and beating Loyola would be just that. If Noodles is as great as they say he is, West Covina will add its third-straight Southeast Trophy.
3. Chino Hills – QB Matt Simko going from Colony to Chino Hills changes everything. He’s arguably and probably the best quarterback in the Valley in 2012 and this team always has depth, numbers, athletes and great coaching. Quarterbacks are game-changers in high school football so there is probably no better time for Chino Hills to take on Amat than right now. But I’ll still take Amat.
4. Charter Oak – No Travis Santiago? No Kurt Scoby? That’s not a good recipe for the type of schedule they’re about to play, so hopefully RB Donovan Washington is everything he’s advertised to be. Charter Oak has athletes, they always do, and Farrar and Co., are a great coaching staff. To win consistently with the type of schedule they face, however, you need a monster defense and a great quarterback, and those are question marks. But based on history, just like Amat, there is nobody on the list ranked below I would take over Charter Oak in a head-to-head game. Based on reputation, just like Amat, you have to give them that.
5. Damien – This SHOULD be Gano’s finest hour with the Spartans. Of all the Sierra League teams, they have the most returning, best depth and I love how much Gage Pucci grew at quarterback last year. Next to Simko, Pucci might be the Valley’s second best.
6. Bonita – This might be a surprise to a lot of you, but I love Bonita and QB Tanner Diebold in this spot. Bonita will be great with Medrano taking over and Podley still there to mentor him. They have a lot returning and if you look at last year, injuries derailed their season more than talent. I think this is their bounce-back year. Seriously, who ranked below should beat them?
7. South Hills — You’ve probably heard by now how solid their offensive and defensive lines are and regardless of recent years records, South Hills continually beats the teams ranked below head-to-head. Heck, they even beat Mid-Valley monster Monrovia. I guess Ayala and Claremont have proved their capable, but I still like the Huskies.
8. Diamond Bar – Sorry Diamond Ranch, now that the Diamond Bar coaching staff has a year under its belt, this is the year they take another step forward. Heard nothing but good things about their program and Snoop Doggs son Cordell Broadus, a sophomore, is supposedly something special. I know I wrote this last year about them, but this HAS to be their time.
9. San Dimas — I don’t care who Zernickow plugs in the Wing T, he consistently has his team chasing a Valle Vista and Mid-Valley title. San Dimas is sort of like Amat in that Zernickow and Co., get the most with what they have and often beat teams more talented on paper.
10. El Monte — I’m going with what I think is the third best quarterback in the Valley in El Monte’s Brandon Martinez. The Lions have a lot returning and a lot of upside after last year’s historic run as far as El Monte football is concerned. B-Mart’s senior year should look a lot like Arroyo All-Everything Steven Rivera’s senior year. I can envision BMart in the player of the year debate. He is that good. Okay, so maybe ranking El Monte this high is a bit of a stretch in terms getting away from the pound-for-pound argument, but this is their year! I’ll stay on course with the remaining choices.
The Rest: 11. Ayala, 12. Claremont, 13. Diamond Ranch, 14. Glendora, 15. Covina, 16. Los Altos, 17. Azusa, 18. La Puente, 19. Arroyo, 20. Rosemead, 21. Duarte, 22. Northview, 23. South El Monte, 24. Pomona, 25. Rowland, 26. Walnut, 27. Sierra Vista, 28. Nogales, 29. Baldwin Park, 30. Mountain View, 31. Workman, 32. Gladstone, 33. Wilson, 34. Ganesha, 35. Bassett

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Bishop Amat Girls Basketball Camp from June 25-28, contact coach Wiard for details

Bishop Amat High School girls’ basketball coach Richard Wiard is holding his annual Lady Hoopster Basketball Camp June 25-28 from 1:30-5:00 daily. The camp is open to girls entering the 5th-9th grades. Girls will receive instruction in basketball fundamentals, a camp t-shirt, and the chance to win daily prizes. The cost of the camp is $85. For more information, contact Coach Wiard at rwiard@bishopamat.org or 626-962-2495 ext. 5868.

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ALL-CIF BASEBALL: Bonita’s Justin Garza and coach John Knott named player and coach of the year in D-3 .. To view all teams click thread

Click the thread to view the All-CIF Southern Section 2012 Baseball teams for all Divisions. Locally, South Hills’ Ty France, Danny Sheehan and Glendora’s Wyatt Wood were first team in D-2. Bonita’s Justin Garza and coach John Knott were the player and coach of the year respectively in D-3 with Los Altos’ Steven Camberos, Joe Munoz, Bonita’s Thomas Castro and Tyler Heslop on the first-team list. In D-4, Bishop Amat’s Daniel Zamora, Adam Alcantara and Nogales’ Erik Gonzalez and Adrian Guzman made the first eam.

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ALL CIF SOFTBALL: Chino Hills’ Nikki Girard and Mike Southworth named player and coach of the year in D-3; to view all teams click thread

Click the thread to view the All-CIF Southern Section 2012 Softball teams for all Divisions. Locally, West Covina’s Summer Knight, Rowland’s Kaylea Snaer and Los Altos’ Alyssa Villalpando were named first team in D-2. Chino Hills’ Nikki Girard and coach Mike Southworth were named the player and coach of the year in D-3. Others on the D-3 first-team list included Chino Hills’ Nikki Innamorato, St. Lucy’s Brandi Harkness, Bishop Amat’s Alexis Gonzalez, Ayala’s Sarah Moore and Charter Oak’s Nicki Sprague. In Division 5, South El Monte’s Ashley Diaz and Demi Nguyen were named to the first team.

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