Masters Meet: Bonita’s Nikki Wheatley, Marissa Scott, Rowland’s Devin Thompson and Amat’s Darren Andrews hoping to reach state track finals

The Masters Meet at Cerritos begins with field events at 4 p.m., followed by track finals at 6 p.m. You can find all the up-to-minute results by clicking the link.
scottBy Keith Lair, Staff Writer
It’s the strangest track and field meet of the season.
When 16 Valley athletes gather at Cerritos College in Norwalk for today’s CIF-Southern Section Masters Meet, it will not be about winning. It will be be about qualifying for next week’s CIF state meet.
Fist place will be as good as sixth place. Twelfth place in distance events might be as good as first place, too. An event’s first six places or a qualifying standard set by CIF will decide who will be advancing to the two-day meet in Fresno on May 31 to June 1.
“My big goal is to achieve,” La Salle’s Daniel De La Torre said. “There’s a lot more room for improvement.”
Field events start at 4:30 p.m. with running events at 6.
The CIF-SS has been granted six spots, no matter the marks, into the state meet. As many as 10 Valley athletes could advance based solely on the standard.
Continue reading “Masters Meet: Bonita’s Nikki Wheatley, Marissa Scott, Rowland’s Devin Thompson and Amat’s Darren Andrews hoping to reach state track finals” »

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SOFTBALL: Northview’s Jocelyn Marquez hits game-winning HR in Vikes 5-4 win over Barstow, all others bow out

Photo gallery of Northview’s 5-4 win over Barstow
vikings celebration
By Fred J. Robledo, Staff Writer
When you’re hot, you’re hot.
Northview has been riding the power of junior centerfielder Jocelyn Marquez and she delivered again, belting a solo shot to center in the bottom of the sixth inning for the go-ahead run, lifting the Vikings to a 5-4 victory over visiting Barstow in Thursday’s CIF-Southern Section Division 5 quarterfinals.
It was Marquez’s fourth homer of the playoffs and eighth of the season. She also hit two home runs in the Vikings’ second-round 7-1 win over Jurupa Hills.
marquezMarquez led off the bottom of the sixth with the score tied 3-3 and instructions from coach, Jeff Butler.
“Coach told me if you get two balls don’t swing at them unless you can hit it out,” Marquez said. “The first pitch was a foul ball and the second pitch … I felt that one. It felt like a beach ball.”
Northview (21-7) advances to the semifinals on Tuesday for the first time in school history. The Vikings will host Aquinas, a 5-3 winner over Downey Calvary Chapel.
Barstow, didn’t go quietly.
Miranda Peralta led off the seventh with a walk and quickly stole second, moving the Aztecs’ game-tying runner into scoring position with no outs.
The defensive play of the game came next.
Barstow’s Gabby Rodriguez hit a bloop fly to right that was caught by Northview’s Reyanne Gonzales. Peralta tagged and headed for third, but Gonzales’ long throw nailed her for a momentum-changing double play.
Barstow followed with back-to-back hits to keep the inning alive, but Vikings pitcher Ana Mejia got Meagan Alvarez to pop out to end the game.
The Vikings can thank Gonzales for that.
“That’s an unbelievable play,” Butler said of the double play in the seventh. “We had a play like that with (Gonzales) earlier in the season and the same right fielder air mailed the fence, the shed and threw it all over the place. She’s worked real hard, so I’m glad for her that she came through in a real clutch situation.”
marquez2Northview shortstop Sarina Jaramillo, who is headed to the University of Hawaii, was 3-for-3 with two doubles and two runs scored, and also made several dazzling defensive plays.
Freshman Monet Manning doubled home two runs in the first inning and finished with three RBIs.
Mejia was steady in the circle. She didn’t have a strikeout, but she put the ball in play and her defense made outs.
“That’s been our fortay all season,” Butler said. “Ana throwing strikes, them hitting it and us fielding it.”
Trailing 3-1, Barstow battled back to take a 4-3 lead in the third inning. After Gabby Rodriguez’s double drove in a run to make it 3-2, Meagan Alvarez singled home two more to go up 4-3. Alvarez finished with three RBIs.
Northview’s Manning singled home Jaramillo in the fourth to tie the score, 4-4.
That set the stage for Marquez’s heroics in the sixth.
“To be honest, we didn’t think we would go this far,” Mejia said. “But I knew we had it in us. It’s the best feeling in the world to go to the semifinals.”

Thursday’s quarterfinals results
Division 2

Millikan 5, Ayala 3
Lakewood 2, Chino Hills 0
Oaks Christian 3, Charter Oak 1
Division 5
Montebello 10, Sierra Vista 1
Silverado 1, San Dimas 0, 9 innings
Northview 5, Barstow 4

Northview’s Jocelyn Marquez, Ana Mejia and coach Jeff Butler spoke afterward

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Softball: Hayes pitches Lakewood by Chino Hils, 2-0

By Steve Ramirez
Lakewood High School didn’t need much to beat Chino Hills, but the Lancers don’t need much when Janelle Hayes is in the circle.
Thursday was no exception.
Hayes tossed a four-hit shutout and struck out 11 and Lakewwood advanced to the CIF-Southern Section Division 2 semifinals with a 2-0 victory over host Chino Hills in a quarterfinal game at Big League Dreams Park.
The Lancers, getting a pair of RBI singles from Kylie Lundberg and Montana Dixon, improved to 23-6 and will travel to Millikan, a 5-3 victor over Ayala, in Tuesday’s semifinals.
Trish Parks gave up for hits and struck out 10 for the Huskies, who finished 25-8. Chino Hills, which was seeking its second consecutive CIF-SS title after winning Division 3 last season, also received two hits from Shianne Brannan.
“It is what it is,” Chino Hills coach Mike Southworth said. “We hadn’t been shut out all year, so for them to shut us out, (Hayes) was obviously pretty effective. She worked the outside part of the plate really well, and that’s softball.
Chino Hills coach Mike Southworth: “It is what it is. We hadn’t been shut out all year, so for them to shut us out, (Hayes) was obviously pretty effective. She worked the outside part of the plate really well, and that’s softball. Her placement of her pitches was good enough to cause our kids some problems. It was tough.”
Lakewood coach Andy Miramontes: “We just had little base hits that we were able to cash in. It was a little flair here and there. I told the girls with a pitcher like (Parks), you just have to concentrate on putting the ball in play, which is what they did.”
Lakewood’s Janelle Hayes: They were helping me out, because they were taking some aggressive swings. Lindsay has been making some fantastic plays the past few games, so even when they hit it deep, I knew she was going to make a play. I was confident she was going to catch it.”

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Did South Torrance get robbed of a run in 5-4 loss to Northview? It sure looks like it .. We’ve got video, you decide

Here’s how I described Tuesday’s controversial call in Northview’s 5-4 win over South Torrance. The new video that surfaced seems to show that the South Torrance runner may have touched home. In Tuesday’s story I wrote: South Torrance was still trying to understand a controversial call moments earlier that took its go-ahead run away.
Trailing 4-2 in the top of the seventh, South Torrance loaded the bases with one out. Kyle Henmi doubled in the gap to score the tying runs with the go-ahead runner, Josh Rotuna, rounding third and colliding with Vikings catcher Gabe Rojo in a play at the plate. The umpire ruled Rotuna out, then after noticing that Rojo dropped the ball, ruled him safe, giving South Torrance a 5-4 lead. Northview appealed, arguing the runner never touched home and the umpire agreed, ruling the runner out at home, tying the score 4-4.
“The (umpire) called him out, then safe, then they rule he never touched the plate, a little confusing, “South coach Grady Sain said. “He (runner) wasn’t ruled out until after the play was dead and then they appealed.
“It’s one of those things where it could have gone either way and unfortunately it went their way.” Northview will advance to the quarterfinals to face Oaks Christian. Vikings coach Darren Murphy said he had a clear view of the play at home.
“It (the call) was a huge momentum changer but at the end of the day coaches always want the right call and that was the right call,” Murphy said. “He never touched home plate. Rojo’s tag knocked him off his feet and he was never within two or three feet of the plate.”
This was obviously much closer than two or three feet. It appears Rotuna’s foot did swipe home. In any case, tough for any of the umpires to know for sure, so surprised the call was changed on appeal. If I had to make the call based on the video, I’d rule him safe.

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Transfer Antonio “Noodles” Hull hires attorney to take on CIF

By Aram Tolegian Staff Writer
The family of Diamond Bar High School football player Antonio “Noodles” Hull has hired an attorney to help appeal the CIF-Southern Section’s declaration of his ineligibility until Nov. 9. 2013.
VBULLDOGSHull, a junior-to-be, transferred from West Covina to Diamond Bar this offseason with hopes of playing for the Brahmas this fall. Earlier this month, the CIF-Southern Section office declared him ineligible for varsity football participation until Nov. 9, 2013 after West Covina disputed the transfer on grounds that it was athletically motivated.
West Covina provided the CIF-Southern Section office with a letter from Hull’s father, which left the ruling body no choice but to declare Hull ineligible under Rule 510, which includes athletic motivation among other things.
Hull’s family will now state its case to a state appeal committee and they’ll do it under the guidance of Chris Prussak, an Orange County-based attorney who claims he specializes in CIF appeals cases.
“One hundred percent of athletes who make their appeal to CIF, they’re athletically motivated,” Prussak said. “They want to play athletics, therefore they are athletically motivated. Tell me the different degrees. It doesn’t say there are different degrees in the blue book, so I don’t understand that term.”
Hull shined as a sophomore at West Covina last fall, earning Tribune Newcomer of the Year honors after playing quarterback, running back and safety for the Bulldogs.
He was expected to be in the mix to play quarterback for Diamond Bar and also start at safety for the Brahmas.
On Aram’s In the Huddle blog, he further wrote that Prussak will also argue that it’s unconstitutional for CIF to step in and say Hull is ineligible when he made a valid change of residence. Other parts of his case will include academics and safety/threat issues that have been alleged in other emails.
Broadus gets another offer
broadusDiamond Bar wide receiver Cordell Broadus added LSU to his growing list of suitors when the Tigers became the latest big-name college team to offer the junior-to-be.
Broadus, whose father is famous rapper Snoop Dogg, already has offers from USC, UCLA and Washington, to name a few.
Scoby to miss spring
New Monrovia running back Kurt Scoby won’t join the team until after spring practice in order to focus on academics, according to Wildcats coach Ryan Maddox.
scobydoScoby, who last played at St. Paul, decided to transfer to Monrovia after several stops this offseason. Under an agreement with Monrovia principal Darvin Jackson to get his academics in order, Scoby won’t participate in team drills until this summer.
“He’s in the process of getting everything squared away grades-wise,” Maddox said. “He’s in good standing. He wanted to focus on his education and focus on getting into a Division I college.
“He’ll join us in the summer. Kurt will make the adjustments and know what’s doing. He’ll be just fine.”
Monrovia is loaded at running back with returner Darione Jones and two sophomores-to-be with bright futures in Cameron Johnson and Anthony Marquez.

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Can Northview handle Oaks Christian’s 96 MPH Phil Bickford, a MLB first-round prospect?

Northview baseball will likely face Oaks Christian’s 6-foot-4 righthander Phil Bickford in Friday’s Division 4 quarterfinal at home. Bickford, a potential Major League Baseball first-round selection in this year’s draft, was clocked at 96 MPH during a 4-1 victory over Bonita for the Redondo tournament title. Bickford draws a lot of attention from scouts, so expect a big crowd tomorrow. Interestingly, Bickford, a starter all season, has not started in the playoffs, making relief appearances in both. Bickford took over in the fourth in the Lions’ 1-0 win over San Marino and didn’t enter until the sixth inning in the Lions’ 5-2 win over Savanna. “It’s a little unusual, I’m not sure if he’ll start or of this is their way of using him in every game,” said Vikings coach Darren Murphy, who expects to face him at some point. “He’s as good as advertised, that’s for sure. We don’t need five or six (runs), we need one or two and hopefully you do that by plugging away and hoping there’s a crack.”

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