This might not be a popular topic with school’s, but who has the worst athletic facilities in the SGV?

This is Los Altos’ stadium field, one of the worst I’ve seen. I’m not saying Los Altos has the worst athletic facility in the SGV, but it’s somewhere in the top ten. Can you think of other schools in need of major facelifts? If you ask who has the BEST athletic facility, I’d go with Damien.

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Workman and Keppel provide the best atmosphere in basketball .. Yes, Workman and Keppel

“Go somewhere else with the “they recruit” allegations, whatever they’re doing, it’s good for basketball, good for players and the schools.” Fred Robledo, quoting himself

Workman and Keppel have become hotbeds for boys and girls basketball and all four varsity teams are among the best in the Valley. Workman boys are 22-1 and the Lobos’ girls are 20-4, having beaten previously undefeated Duarte in back-to-back games recently. The Keppel girls are among the best in the Southern Section at 20-4 and the boys are tied for first in the Almont with a 17-8 overall mark. How do they do it? You don’t necessarily think of Keppel and Workman as basketball factories, but that’s what they’ve become. Go somewhere else with the “they recruit” allegations, whatever they’re doing, it’s good for basketball, good for players and the schools. What’s even more impressive is the atmosphere. Both schools remind me of the 80s and 90s when gyms were packed and the crowds were into it. There’s not enough of that lately.

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Have you been paying attention to the high school soccer scene? If so, who are your players of the year?

I have a strong feeling who I’m considering for the boys and girls soccer players of the year, and a list of candidates under consideration for the all-area teams. But obviously, playoffs and how teams and players perform in the post-season is where you can make your strongest arguments. But with a week left before the knockout rounds begin, who has impressed you the most?

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Charter Oak hosting a passing tournament in May? That’s right, May

By Aram Tolegian, SGVN
If you’re one of those people who roll their eyes when they hear about a football-related event long before the season starts, then Charter Oak High School football coach Lou Farrar has a doozy for you.
Farrar announced earlier this week his program will host an eight-team passing tournament on May 18. To put it in perspective, that’s the same day as the Preakness Stakes … and just one day after the first round of the CIF-Southern Section baseball playoffs.
Speaking of the baseball playoffs on May17, that’s also the night of the Hall of Fame All-Star Game for soon-to-be graduated local football standouts.

Yes, the era of the overlapping sports season has arrived.
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Arroyo’s Primitivo Gomez moves Knights step closer to a league title, scores 28 in 65-58 win over Gabrielino


By Aram Tolegian

Only a rare talent can score two points in one quarter and one point in another and still take over the game, lead all scorers and ultimately earn his team a win.

That was the case for Arroyo High School basketball standout Primitivo Gomez on Wednesday. The 6-foot-5 senior erupted for 15 points in the third quarter on his way to a game-high 28 points as Arroyo moved a step closer to a Mission Valley League championship with a 65-58 win over visiting Gabrielino.

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Checkmate! Covina clinches first outright league crown in more than two decades with 64-55 win over Nogales

By Steve Ramirez, SGVN
It’s checkmate in the Valle Vista League.
Mike Peters scored 17 points and Blythe Curry had 15 and Covina High School won its first outright league title in more than two decades with a 64-55 victory over visiting Nogales on Wednesday.
The Colts, who shared the Valle Vista with Wilson and Northview last season, also are back-to-back champions for the first time since the early 1980s. Covina, which improved to 18-5 overall and 10-0 in league, also received 12 and 10 points, respectively, from Matt Hicks and Eddie Hays.
James Santiago had 24 points for Nogales, which slipped to 5-19 and 1-8.
Covina’s Mike Peters: “It’s great to go back-to-back. It’s what we’ve talked about doing. To go back-to-back, I’m ready for the next level (playoffs) now.”
Covina coach Will Bissman: “It’s (the school’s) first back-to-back in 30 years. That’s what is nice. But the outright is a lot better than last year, when we shared it.”

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Girls Soccer: Bishop Amat gets its swag back with 1-0 win over second-ranked St. Joseph

Bishop Amat-St. Joseph’s Photo Gallery

Bishop Amat’s Yazmin Montoya speaks after 1-0 win over St. Joseph’s …

Bishop Amat’s Kathleen Zamora talks after scoring the game-winner in the 67th minute…

By Fred J. Robledo, Staff Writer
The Bishop Amat girls soccer team might not be as powerful as the team that won the CIF-Southern Section Division 3 title in 2011 or the one that advanced to last year’s championship game, but don’t tell the Lancers they’re not contenders anymore.
They think they’re and went out and showed why.
Feeling snubbed after being left off this week’s Division 3 poll, Bishop Amat responded with a 1-0 victory over second-ranked St. Joseph on Wednesday, avenging a 3-2 loss to the Jesters earlier in the season.
“It was a big win,” Amat midfieder Jazmin Montoya said. “We have hard workers and players who want to win. We’re not the most talented team as we have been, but we’ll work as a team to win.”
The victory moves Amat (12-4-5, 5-1) and St. Joseph’s (16-4-4, 5-1) into a first-place tie in the Del Rey League with two games left.
Both teams had opportunities in front of the goal, but Amat had better opportunities on set pieces, trying to convert long throw-ins and corners.
Finally, in the 67th minute, Amat’s Cassadra Reyes took a pass and darted down the left side, crossing a ball in front that senior Kathleen Zamora headed home for the lone goal.
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Boys Basketball Rankings: Chino Hills showing the way

Glendora is losing its way in the rough and tough Baseline League.
Keith Birmingham/ San Gabriel Valley Tribune

1. Chino Hills (18-4) — Cruising in the tough Sierra
2. La Verne Lutheran (21-6) — Continuing the tradition
3. Damien (17-4) — Showed a lot in loss at APU
4. Bonita (18-5) — Still the top cat in Hacienda
5. Glendora (16-7) — Shackled in the Baseline
6. Workman (21-1) — Taking care of business
7. Covina (17-5) — Clinched a share league title
8. Claremont (15-8) — Enjoying a solid season
9. Rowland (15-7) — Looked good on Saturday
10. Diamond Bar (12-10) — Challenging in league

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Girls Basketball Rankings: Amat says it all on the court

Workman moved up a slot after sweeping Duarte, ending the Falcons’ 39-game league win streak.
SGVN staff f photo by Leo Jarzomb

1. Bishop Amat (17-6) — Showed why it’s No. 1 at APU
2. Bonita (18-5) — 0-2 vs. Del Rey League
3. Workman (18-4) — Still doubting the Lobos?
4. Duarte (17-2) — Swept by Workman
5. Ayala (14-7) — Enjoying life in Sierra
6. Diamond Ranch (15-6) — Still a very scary foe
7. Wilson (14-6) — Cruising in the Valle Vista
8. Rosemead (15-6) — League streak continues
9. Glendora (15-7) — Holding its own in Baseline
10. South Hills (12-10) — Enjoyed good split last week

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Boys Soccer: Damien solidifying the top spot

SGVN/Staff photo by Watchara Phomicinda

1. Damien (11-2-3) — Sits atop Sierra League
2. Sierra Vista (14-1-3) — Cruising in Montview League
3. Walnut (12-2-1)- Lost only game last week
4. South Hills (9-6-3) — Suffers another split week
5. Nogales (9-2-1) — Faces Pomona for first
6. Claremont (8-6-1) — Staying close in Sierra League
7. Los Altos (11-6-2) — Beat Walnut, Diamond Bar last week
8. Diamond Bar (11-5-2) — Rebounded from loss
9. Baldwin Park (9-4-1) — Playing its best late
10. Ayala (10-7-3) — Making noise in league

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Girls Soccer Rankings: Chino Hills keeps on rolling

SGVN/Staff photo by Watchara Phomicinda)

1. Chino Hills (14-2-4) –Won six of last seven
2. Claremont (18-3-2) — Eyeing Chino Hills’ rematch
3. Diamond Bar (13-3-3) — Looking like Hacidena’s best
4. Bishop Amat (11-4-5) — Making a late push
5. Sierra Vista (15-2-1) — Toying with league foes
6. San Dimas (12-4-2) — League championship is a formality
7. St. Lucy’s (8-4-3) — Playing its best
8. Walnut (8-4-1) — Diamond Bar’s chief league foe
9. Los Altos (11-7-2) — Drops after double loss
10. South Hills (8-7-3) –Humbled by Sierra League

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Breaking News: Rowland names Ryan Jacobson football coach

Ryan Jacobson has been named head coach at Rowland, replacing Craig Snyder, who resigned earlier this month. Jacobson is a Rowland graduate who teaches Special Education at Rowland. He’s been in the football program for the past ten years, the last seven as a varsity assistant.

Rowland Athletic Director, Ralph Harris: “We are absolutely thrilled to bring Ryan on as our head coach. He brings incredible energy and leadership qualities that will serve us well. He is a principled man who will carry on the ideals and values that we have come to know in our football program. Ryan is a great fit for us.”

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Arroyo’s El Primitivo Gomez leads the SGV in scoring (25 ppg) and hopes to lead the Knights past Gabrielino once more

“We practiced it every day. I worked out at home on my own just for this moment. I watched video every day. It was in the back of my mind every day.” Arroyo’s Primitivo Gomez after beating Gabrielinio 67-66 in early January. El Primo is averaging a Valley best 25 points to go with 10 boards per game. Arroyo and Gabrielino meet again on Wednesday.

By Steve Ramirez

Arroyo’s boys basketball team edged Gabrielino, 67-66, when the teams played for first place in the Mission Valley League on Jan. 11 in San Gabriel.
A similar nailbiter is expected Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. when the rivals meet at Arroyo with first place on the line.
The host Knights, who are 16-6 overall and 6-0 in league play, are led by senior swing player Primitivo Gomez, who is averaging 25 points a game – including a team-high 36 3-pointers – and 10 rebounds per game.

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Los Altos’ Stephanie Contreras closing in on CIF-SS all-time goal-scoring record in girls water polo

By Steve Ramirez, SGVN

Los Altos High School has had its fair share of elite athletes over the years.
The list includes football players Mike Smith and Shaun Cody, baseball player Sergio Santos and golfer Bob May.
The latest Conqueror to shine is senior girls water polo player Stephanie Contreras, who is on the verge of becoming the all-time goal-scoring leader in the CIF-Southern Section. La Salle’s Kara-Leigh Huse (2004-08) is the all-time leader with 620 goals.

Contreras will attempt to inch closer to history today while also helping Los Altos in its biggest game of the season, a 3:30 p.m. Hacienda League encounter against first-place Bonita at Los Altos.

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Workman beats Duarte (again) in Montview classic …

“Imari can have a game like that every single night. That’s a dream player. We have other players beside Imari, who normally all year long have been putting up 17 points a game. We don’t want to call it ‘The Imari Show’, but sometimes the girls get caught looking. I tell the girls to stop looking like they do with Kobe (Bryant). Sometimes they just watch her play and you can’t do that.”– Duarte coach Mark Smith

By Aram Tolegian
DUARTE — After ending Duarte’s Montview League win streak at 39 games last Friday night, the Workman High School girls basketball game was out to prove the victory was no joke … and maybe start a prolonged league winning streak of its own.

Mission accomplished on the both ends.

Freshman guard Leslie Rivera score 25 points, including several clutch 3-pointers in the second half, as Workman took another giant step toward the Montview League title with a 74-68 victory over host Duarte on Monday night.

Workman (18-4, 10-0) led 57-47 late in the third quarter, but Duarte (17-2, 7-2) rallied behind standout Imari Brown to forge a 64-63 lead with 2:50 to play. That’s when things got a little too crazy in the stands as a packed house of Lobos and Falcons fans mixed it up enough to the point that the game was delayed a few minutes while sherriff’s deputies calmed things down.

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SoCal Shootout Results: Glendora ends four-game skid, Damien battles, then falls to Centennial; Bishop Amat girls still best in the Valley

Saturday’s Southern California shootout
Glendora 58, La Canada 44Four-game losing streaks are a rare thing for the Glendora High School boys basketball program.
That’s why the Tartans were leaving nothing to chance on Saturday afternoon against perennial power La Canada in the Southern California Shootout at Azusa Pacific University.
Glendora jumped all over the Spartans in the first half and never looked back in a 58-44 win – ending a four-game skid it endured in the rugged Baseline League.

Corona Centennial 72, Damien 66 The Damien High School boys basketball team knows right where it stands.
The Spartans now know they can compete with Southern California’s best. That was evident in the 11th annual Southern California Shootout on Saturday evening at Azusa Pacific University.
In one of the shootout’s marquee games, Centennial of Corona went on a 3-point barrage to defeat Damien, 72-66.

Girls, Bishop Amat 49, Bonita 42 Strong defense at the start of the third quarter was enough to send the Bishop Amat High School girls basketball team to a win over Bonita in a battle of the area’s top two teams Saturday at the Southern California Shootout at Azusa Pacific University.
The Lancers put the clamps on Bonita early in the third, and held the Bearcats scoreless for the first four minutes of the quarter to build a comfortable enough lead that ultimately resulted in a 49-42 victory.

Rio Hondo Prep 56, Alta Loma 49 After being held to just two points in the first half, Robert Cartwright scored 16 points in the second half to lead Flintridge Prep to a come-from-behind 56-49 win over Alta Loma (8-13) in the Southern California Shootout at Azusa Pacific University.
Other Scores:
Etiwanda 56, La Costa Canyon 51
Rowland 69, Saddleback 26

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Legendary coaches Mike LeDuc and Tom Hofman talk about today’s legendary meeting, and how they’ve done it all these years


Flintridge Prep v. Alta Loma, 9 a.m.
Rowland vs Saddleback, 10:30 a.m.
Bishop Amat vs. Bonita (girls), Noon
La Canada vs. Glendora, 1:30 p.m.
Colony vs. Murrieta Valley, 3 p.m.
Claremont vs. Rancho Verde, 4:30 p.m.
Damien vs. Corona Centennial, 6 p.m.
La Costa Canyon vs. Etiwanda, 7:30 p.m.
Los Osos vs. Maranatha, 9 p.m.

By Aram Tolegian

It seems nobody knows for sure when the last time was that the storied Glendora and La Canada high school boys basketball programs played each other.

Spartans legendary head coach Tom Hofman speculated it was in the early 1990s, but didn’t know the exact year for sure. Tartans legendary head coach Mike LeDuc said he had it in a book somewhere, but didn’t seem in a rush to find it.

The fact is that it hasn’t happened nearly enough, according to this fan/writer and most area hoops fans. But that will change, at least for one year anyway, on Saturday when La Canada takes on Glendora in the Southern California Shootout at Azusa Pacific University. Tipoff is at 1:30p.m.

Saturday’s game figures to be one of those rare events in which the score of the game or talent on the court may not matter as much as the spectacle of seeing two of the best coaches not only in Valley history, but state history as well, square off against each other.

LeDuc has won a staggering 779 games in his 33 years as a head coach. Hofman has won 587 games in 27 years.

LeDuc has four CIF-SS championships. Hofman has two.

A big reason for those impressive numbers is that both men have mastered the art of maximizing the talent they have to work with, whether it be players who went on to the NBA, blue-chip recruits or the kid whose career ended after the 12th grade.

“I would hope that my impressions (of him) are the same as anybody’s in the coaching community, he’s an incredible coach,” LeDuc said of Hofman. “He gets the most out of his players every single year. Sometimes, they win CIF titles when their players are a little bit better than other years. Then, other years, they maybe win 20 games and win the league. He maximizes his talent, and every kid who’s ever played for him has had a great experience.”

The feeling was mutual when Hofman was asked his thoughts on LeDuc.

“He’s a great coach, an outstanding coach,” Hofman said. “He really knows how to coach offense. When I get a chance to watch them play, I’m studying the game more than I’m being a fan. I’m more of a student when I watch those guys play.”

In an era in which most of the top coaches are out hustling for talent on the travel ball circuit, Hofman and LeDuc are throwbacks. They prefer to let their record and expertise be the selling point for their programs. And if that doesn’t lure the next big prospect in the area, then so be it.

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Friday Scoreboard: Glendora falls to Rancho Cucamonga, 67-60, San Dimas beats Baldwin Park 52-51

That was some atmosphere at the Duarte-Workman girls hoops game. Loud, passionate it, into it .. my kind of crowd. Check out Keith Birmingham’s photo gallery of the game.

Boys Basketball

Rancho Cucamonga 67, Glendora 60
Mission Valley
South El Monte 65, El Monte 52
Valle Vista
San Dimas 52, Baldwin Park 51
Covina 65, Wilson 46 — Covina is now 16-5 and 8-0
Girls Basketball
Bonita 62, Diamond Ranch 45 – Nikki Wheatley scores 23 points in 2nd half, finishes with 29 and 9 rebounds.
Workman 77, Duarte 68 – Lobos snap Falcons’ 39-game league winning streak, and end their undefeated season.
Boys Soccer
Sierra League

Damien 3, Ayala 0 - Sam Williams scored and drew a PK to pace the league leaders on the road.
Chino Hills 3, Charter Oak 0 – -The Huskies got goals from Chandler Cullum, Jaie Peshawaria & Thomas Neel.
Claremont 1, South Hills 0 - Steven Macia scored a goal in the 86th minute for the winner.
Girls Soccer
Sierra League

St. Lucy’s 1, Ayala 0 - Sami James scored to keep the Regents in the playoff hunt, next up second-place Claremont.
Claremont 2, South Hills 1
Chino Hills 3, Charter Oak 0 – Ashley Gonzales scored twice for the Huskies.

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Workman’s young girls basketball team is the real deal, shocks undefeated Duarte 77-68 after the Falcons’ Imari Brown fouls out with 33 points

By Fred J. Robledo, Staff Writer
Workman High freshman Leslie Rivera went nuts in the fourth quarter to help the Lobos pull off a comeback thriller over undefeated Duarte in front of packed house that never stopped shouting on Friday.
Rivera scored 15 of her 21 points in the fourth quarter to help Workman rally past Duarte 77-68 to snap the two-time Montview League champions 39-game league winning streak.
Workman improved to 18-4 and 9-0 while the Falcons dropped to 17-1 and 7-1.
Rivera is one of three super freshman that start for the Lobos. Freshman combo guard Alize Williams finished with 18 points and sophomore sharpshooter Denise Gonzalez finished with a team high 24 points.
Duarte led 58-51 going into the fourth, but Rivera opened the quarter with back-to-back 3-pointers, then got a steal and layup to give the Falcons a 59-58 lead. (click to continue reading)

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Friday’s Big Games: Undefeated Duarte at league undefeated Workman in girls hoops, 6 p.m.

Boys Basketball
Valle Vista

Covina (15-5, 7-0) at Wilson (11-11, 5-2), 6:30 p.m.
Baldwin Park (16-7, 5-2) at San Dimas (11-9, 4-3), 6:30 p.m.
Baseline League
Rancho Cucamonga (18-4, 4-1) at Glendora (15-6, 1-4), 6:30 p.m.
Girls Basketball
Montview League

Duarte (17-0, 7-0) at Workman (17-4, 8-0), 6 p.m.
Hacienda League
Diamond Ranch (15-6, 6-1) at Bonita (17-4, 7-0), 5 p.m.
Boys Soccer
Sierra League

Ayala (10-7-3, 3-2) at Damien (10-2-3, 4-1), 5:30 p.m.

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Video/Story: Former Amat legend Mark Paredes introduced as Damien’s next football coach

On facing former schools ..
“Bishop Amat is a high school that I love, JW North is a school that I love, St. Paul is a school that I love,” Paredes said. “I would not go and seek playing them only because you have mixed emotions. Let me put it this way, if I have to play them, I will play them. If I don’t have to play them, I won’t play them.”

By Aram Tolegian
Story: Mark Paredes, who coached Bishop Amat to arguably its best-ever season in 1992, was named the new varsity football head coach at Damien High School on Thursday.

Paredes, who spent the past three seasons as the head coach at JW North in Riverside, replaces Greg Gano, who resigned in December after four seasons at the school. Gano has since been named head coach at Tustin.

“I toyed with the idea and really didn’t think I was in the ballpark, and finally it came to fruition,” Paredes said of being hired. “It’s one of those things that everything came to be in place. They wanted me and I wanted them, and I decided that it was a good situation. I’m excited about building a program and continuing the Damien tradition.”

After leading Amat to California’s first-ever 15-0 season in 1992, which included a CIF championship and a win in the now-defunct Reebok Bowl, Paredes left in 1994.

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Bonita not ready to surrender Hacienda, beats Rowland 51-43

“Bonita is the class of the league right now,” Raiders coach Gordon Hamlow said. “They’re 30-1 in the last three years and until someone knocks them off, it doesn’t matter.”
Photo gallery of Bonita-Rowland

By John Honell
Two-time defending Hacienda League boys basketball champion Bonita stayed on top of the league race with a hard-fought 51-43 win over Rowland on Wednesday night.

The Bearcats (18-5, 6-1) had chances to fold in the fourth quarter but got key baskets from Dane Hollar and Riley Brungard to hold off the Raiders (14-7, 4-3).

“Bonita is the class of the league right now,” Raiders coach Gordon Hamlow said. “They’re 30-1 in the last three years and until someone knocks them off, it doesn’t matter.”

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Sierra League Soccer Results; Damien boys, Chino Hills girls lead after first round

Wednesday’s Sierra League boys soccer results
Damien 4, Charter Oak 0
South Hills 2, Chino Hills 1
Ayala 3, Claremont 2
Damien 4-1
Claremont 3-2
South Hills 3-2
Ayala 3-2
Chino Hills 1-4
Charter Oak 1-4

Wednesday’s Sierra League girls soccer results
Chino Hills 4, South Hills 0
Claremont 0, Ayala 0
St. Lucy’s 3, Charter Oak 1
Chino Hills 5-0
Claremont 3-1-1
Ayala 2-1-2
St. Lucy’s 2-2-1
South Hills 1-4
Charter Oak 0-5

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Girls Basketball: Rosemead wins 41st straight Mission Valley contest with 42-24 victory over El Monte

By Fred J. Robledo, Staff Writer
Any thoughts the El Monte High School girls basketball team had of snapping Rosemead’s 40-game Mission Valley League winning streak disappeared under the pressure of the Panthers’ hawking defense.
Rosemead pressed and forced turnover after turnover to build a quick 12-point lead and never let up, winning 42-24 for its 41st straight league win.
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