The Circus is back in town: Salesian football wins appeal to avoid Catholic League South … For now

The CIF-Southern Section Executive Committee voted 13-3-3 on Wednesday to approve Salesian’s appeal to the 2014-18 Parochial Area Catholic League South football placement, which would have put Salesian in a Pac-5 football league with Loyola, Serra and Bishop Amat. Salesian balked at the idea of essentially moving from Division 10 to Division I and would prefer to play in the Mission League, though rumors persist that it does not want to be in the same league as rival Cathedral, which is currently slated to be in the Mission League. What happens next is that CAA must either propose changes or reaffirm their original plans for final approval or appeal to the CIF-SS on or before April 30. The CAA is set to meet on April 23 to discuss the appeal and map out the next move. The CAA expects to vote on a counter proposal on April 28 that it can send to CIF on April 30 for final approval.

How will it turn out?: Below is what the CAA had approved before Wednesday’s appeal. Question now is what happens to Salesian? My guess is that ultimately, either Cathedral or St. Francis replaces Salesian in the Catholic League South.

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Girls Basketball All-Area: Bonita’s Nikki Wheatley earns third straight player of the year honor; El Monte’s Cristine Butler coach of the year



Bonita High School’s Nikki Wheatley will go down as one of the top girls basketball players in the area has ever produced.
There wasn’t a thing the senior, sans winning a CIF-Southern Section division championship, she didn’t accomplish.
Wheatley earned All-CIF-SS three of her four seasons and was first team All-Area four times, including being Player of the Year her final three seasons.

“As I progressed, I felt I became more of a leader on the team,” Wheatley said. “I was able to have a successful four years. Definitely, having success in the playoffs all four years, and my last year, having (teammate Kandyce Smith) come in was great.”
Wheatley was great, and the key factor in Bonita winning another Hacienda League title and advancing to the finals for the second time during the past four years.
“Nikki is a point guard who is a great floor leader and good court vision and really brings a lot to the position,” said Nevada-Las Vega coach Kathy Olivier, who signed Wheatley to play for the Rebels, beginning next season. “Having a player with her kind of winning background in our class is key.”
WHEATLEYMUGWheatley ranked among the area leaders in scoring and assists and helped the Bearcats go 29-3 and advance to the finals, where they lost, 59-53, to Long Beach Millikan. But Wheatley prefers to look at the overall and what her team accomplished this season.
“I felt really good, even though we couldn’t finish it in the last game,” Wheatley said. “We had a really good season, beat a lot of good teams. We definitely proved ourselves, being in a tougher division. We did really good as a team and a lot of players stepped up, so overall, we had a very good season.”
Wheatley topped it off with an MVP effort in last week’s 11th Tribune/Star-News All-Star Classic, scoring a game-high 18 points to lead the Tribune All-Stars to an 85-60 victory over the Star-News.
Now she looks forward to her collegiate career, which takes Wheatley to Nevada-Las Vegas, where she will team with Smith as two of the Rebels prized recruits.
“Kandyce is going there too, so we’re really excited about that,” Wheatley said. “We’re going to have a really good team. I’m excited.”

Butler has changed the culture at El Monte, turning the program into a player in the Mission Valley League, which over the past decade had been ruled by Rosemead and Arroyo.
Butler, in just her second year at El Monte, has gone 33-20 the past two seasons, with two trips to the CIF-SS playoffs and scoring the school’s first league title since 1991 this season.
The Lions went 17-8 this season.
“Coming into the season, winning league was our goal this year,” Butler said. “It was something we reminded ourselves every single practice, every single game. When we got some big wins early, we knew we had set ourselves up to accomplish that goal.
“It was something very exciting. I’m proud of these girls. They are going to be a very special group for us for a long time.”

Smith, a senior transfer from La Salle, was the difference maker for the Bearcats’ run to the Division 1AA finals this season. She provided the outside game to Wheatley’s drive and dish presence. Her best effort was a 22-point effort in a 56-49 victory over Great Oak in the semifinals. She was first team All-Division 1AA and All-Hacienda League. She will join Wheatley at UNLV.

The senior was another key factor for the Bearcats drive to the divisional finals. She was a solid scoring option, preventing opponents from collapsing on Wheatley and Smith. She was first team All-Hacienda League.

Santana was a mark of consistency for the Lancers, who advanced to the Division 1AA quarterfinals. Shewas one of the better 3-point shooters in the area and ranked among the leaders in scoring. She was also strong without the basketball. The senior was one of three players to earn All-CIF-SS honors, getting a spot at Division IAA.

Ramirez has been a key player for Amat the past two seasons, and provided a scoring option on the inside and outside. She was one of the better scorers in the area. She was All-Del Rey League.

Theus did a little of everything for the Colts. She was a key part of Covina going 19-10 overall and 12-0 in the Valle Vista League. She came up big in wins over Wilson, which clinched the league title. She was league MVP.

Watkins was the top inside player in the area and keyed the Lions to a 17-8 record and their first Mission Valley League title since 1991. She averaged nearly 12 points a game and had 9. 1 rebounds per
contest to help the Lions go 9-1 in league play.

Williams was one of the more versatile players in the area, comfortable on the outside and inside. She ranked among the area leaders in scoring and played a major role in Workman going 18-9 and winningA the Montview League title. She was Montview League MVP.

Dy was a key player for the Panthers, who went 21-7 and finished second in the Hacienda League to Bonita. The senior ranked among the leaders in scoring in the area, and provided both production inside and outside. She was first team All-Hacienda League.

Kawamoto was one of the top shooters in the area. She led the Wildcats with a 15 points a game. The senior also averaged nearly six rebounds a game and 3.5 steals a contest. She keyed Wilson to an 18-10 record and a second-place finish in the Valle Vista League. She was first team All-Valle Vista League.

Tuala was one of the top scorers in the area, leading the Eagles with a 17 point a game average. She also averaged an area-best 19.7 rebounds a game. She was All-Mission Valley League.

Guard: Erin Houston, Charter Oak, Sr.
Guard: Katie Taylor, Northview, Sr.
Forward: Olivia Habern, Glendora, Sr.
Guard: Janae Chamois, Bishop Amat, Sr.
Guard: Jessica Rosas, Gladstone,Sr.
Guard: Amanda Alvarado, Bishop Amat, Sr.
Guard: Alicia Aguirre, Workman, So.
Forward: Kathy Mckiernan, Duarte, Jr.
Guard: Norah Wu, Diamond Bar, Sr.
Forward: Tiana Eaton, Diamond Ranch, Fr.

Bonita: Cassie Martinez, Jr.
Covina: Mariah Sierra, Fr.
Duarte: Mackenzie Barnes, So.
Glendora: Kelly Sera, Sr.
San Dimas: Dymond Mitchell, So.
South Hills: Brittany Wang; Joy Krupa
St. Lucy’s: Maryrose Wintroath; Mary Serafin
Walnut: Kim Mayekawa, Jr.; Katya Echavez, Jr.
West Covina: Adriana Ramirez, Jr.; Briana Ruelas, So.
Wilson: Elizabeth Lau, Sr.; Janae Yip, Jr.

1 Bonita (29-3)
2. Bishop Amat (22-8)
3. Diamond Ranch (21-7)
4. South Hills (18-10)
5. Workman (18-9)
6. Covina (19-10)
7. El Monte (17-8)
8. Wilson (18-10)
9. Duarte (16-10)
10. Diamond Bar (13-14)

Baseline: Etiwanda
Del Rey: Serra, Bishop Montgomery
Hacienda: Bonita
Mission Valley: El Monte
Montview: Workman
Sierra: Chino Hills
Valle Vista: Covina

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Baseball: Glendora edges Upland 5-4

glendorapitcherThe Glendora baseball team has earned some room for error, but veteran coach Dan Henley is far from comfortable. The Tartans edged Upland 5-4 so they now lead the Baseline League and second-place Rancho Cucamonga by two games and Upland and Etiwanda by three.

Henley wasn’t surprised to see the Highlanders rally back and he isn’t feeling totally comfortable with his team’s lead.

“Upland hits the ball and we knew that lead wasn’t necessarily safe. We had some good at-bats early and we’re able to put up just enough runs,” Henley said. “I like our position but I also know there’s a long way to go and anything can happen.”

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St. Paul softball sweeps struggling Bishop Amat, 3-2

By John Honell
The St. Paul softball team got only three hits, but two of them were home runs in a 3-2 win over Bishop Amat on Tuesday.
The win gave the Swordsmen (15-4-1, 5-1) a half-game lead over Amat in the Del Rey League — the first time they have led the Lancers (12-7, 5-2) in the standings since 2007.
“The keys to the game was outstanding pitching by (Koreen Orozco) and timely hitting — the home run by Lovie (Lopez) and the one by Danny Munoz — and then good defense and believing in ourselves,” Swordsmen coach Jim Maier said. “Coming over here and winning in one of the toughest places to win, we took it and we got ’em.”


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Never doubt the heart of a champion: Bonita comes off the deck to beat Walnut, 6-5, in eight innings

By Stephen Ramirez
@SteveRRamirez on Twitter
Never doubt the heart of a champion.
Bonita High School showed why Tuesday.
Alex Gonzalez and Danny Gelalich had RBIs in the the seventh inning and Ethan Muro a game-winning single in the eighth as the Bearcats scored an improbable comeback in a 6-5 victory over first-place Walnut in a key Hacienda League game.
Nick Johnson also pitched 3 2/3 shutout innings for Bonita, which improved to 13-5 overall and 4-1 in league play. Walnut, which got six solid innings from Christian Longoria and two RBIs from Steven Canedo, slipped to 10-7-2 and 2-1.
The teams meet at Bonita on Thursday at 3:30 p.m.
Walnut looked like it might stretch its league lead after leading 5-3 after six innings. But it all fell apart for the Mustangs after Bonita loaded the bases with no outs in the seventh following a walk, a fielding error and a hit-batter.
Gonzalez singles to make it 5-4 before Gelalich worked a one-out walk to tie it at 5.
Montgomery Montenegro then reached third with one out in the eighth on an infield single, a throwing error and a wild pitch. Muro then singled to right for the 6-5 lead.
Walnut, which missed a chance to win in the seventh after putting runners on first and second with no outs, then went in order in the eighth.

Bonita coach John Knott: “Walnut was tough. It was sloppy in the sense that both teams made mistakes, but credit our guys for not packing it in when we were down a couple of runs late. We had some big hits when we needed them, including Ethan Muro in the eighth inning.”

Bonita’s Ethan Muro: “This is kind of way our team’s been all year. We’re kind of underdogs now. Everyone says this is a rebuilding year, and that fires us up. I guess you can say my team wants it more than any team we play.”

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Boys Basketball All-Area: Damien junior Jeremy Hemsley earns second straight player of the year honor

There are very few boys basketball players in the area who are capable of not only leading their respective team in scoring, but can take over a game and do it despite the opposition’s scheme to stop them.
The exception is Damien High School’s Jeremy Hemsley, who proved game after game over the past few years that the not only can accomplish it under those conditions, but also thrive, helping the Spartans to become the area’s elite team.
For his efforts, Hemsely is Tribune Boys Basketball Player of the Year.

“I thought I had a pretty good year,” said Hemsley, who was area player of the year for the second consecutive season, “There are still some things I need to work on, but I think I led my team to the best of my abilities.”
Hemsley played a major role in Damien’s success, which included winning two December tournaments, going 22-7 and advancing two rounds in the CIF-Southern Section Division 1AA playoffs this past season.
The junior, who averaged 22 points a game, was one of three area players to score at least 20 points a contest. But he was also one of the more versatile players in the area, helping the Spartans with five rebounds per game, while also getting five assists and two steals per game. He was All-CIF-SS for the second consecutive season.
Damien, which won the Division 3AA last season, finished short of its goal in repeating, losing to Great Oak, of Temecula, in the second round.
“I don’t think there was more pressure this year,” Hemsley said. “It really came down to having fun, and I don’t think we had as much fun playing the game as last year. I think that played a big part of us not winning games, like we did last year.”
But after tasting the title in 2013 and falling short this season, Hemsley is already looking forward to next season.
“There’s definitely motivation for next season,” Hemsley said. “That (coming up short) always gets me to work harder and do better than the next person.
“I’m improved on my game this season, but I think there’s some things I still need to work on.”
Next season will also be another challenge for the Spartans, who move from the Sierra League to the more highly-competitive Baseline League, which had all of its six teams make the playoffs and now will include powers Chino Hills and Damien. But Hemsley wouldn’t want it any other way.
“I like that a lot,” Hemsley said. “I like the competition. I’m excited (about the move).”

This was a breakout season for Walnut, which has been an up-and-coming program in recent years, and Cameron has been there from the ground up.
Walnut High School, after making solid runs over the past three seasons, went 22-6 and won their first league title in more than a decade, going 12-0 to claim the Hacienda League title. The Mustangs, led by league MVP Zuri Williams and a quartet of seniors, also won 14 of 15 games over the final two months of the season.
“It was a good year for us, obviously,” said Cameron, whose Mustangs have gone 56-29 over the past three seasons. “We had a good group of kids, a good coaching staff. We had come close (to winning league) a couple of times, but it was very special this year to finally beat everyone else. It was a compliment to the players this year.”

Bigornia was one of the top guards in the area, capable of running the floor or knocking down 3-pointers. He ranked among the area scoring leaders while helping Glendora to an 18-10 record. He was first team All-CIF-Southern Section Division 2AA and All-Baseline League.

Rico was part of Glendora’s two-guard tandem with A.J. Bigornia. He was Tribune MVP in last week’s 11th Tribune/Star-News Classic, scoring 19 points, including four 3-pointers, to lead the Tribune to an 87-81 victory. He was second team All-Baseline League.

Williams was a key part of the Mustangs scoring their first league title in more than a decade, going undefeated in the Hacienda League. He earned Hacienda League MVP after scoring 10.3 points per game and averaging nearly five assists and four steals, respectively, per game.

Harrelson was a key factor in Walnut winning the Hacienda League. He ranked among the area leaders in scoring with a 14.5 average and was key inside with 6.5 rebounds per game. He was first team All-Hacienda League for Walnut, which was 22-6. Harrelson scored a game-high 20 points in least week’s all-star game.

Andarza keyed Bishop Amat to a 15-14 record and a trip to the CIF-SS Division 3A quarterfinals, losing to Santa Barbara. The junior averaged 12 points and seven rebounds a game. He was first team All-CIF-SS Division 3A and All-Del Rey League. Anadarza was one of only three area players to earn All-CIF-SS, joining Damien’s Hemsley and Glendora’s Bigornia.

Wilson enjoyed one of its better seasons in recent memory, and Price played a major role in the Wildcats going 12-0 to claim the Valle Vista League title. He averaged 12 points and five rebounds per game and was Valle Vista League MVP.

Rodriguez was the latest star at Workman, which has dominated the Montview League in recent seasons. He keyed the Lobos run to a 21-7 record and another Montview League title. He was league MVP after putting up 21 points and 3.5 assists per contest.

Fitts was a preseason question mark, which he answered by averaging nearly 14 points and seven rebounds per game to help the Spartans to a 22-7 record and advance two rounds in the Division 1AA playoffs. He filled in nicely as the shooting guard role and was All-Sierra League.

Bullock was the top inside player in the area. He was a force in the middle for the Lobos after averaging 14 points and 20 rebounds per game in helping the Nobles to a 14-14 record. He was first team All-Valle Vista League.

Mendoza was arguably the top guard in the Mission Valley League. He led the area with a 22.2 points per game average. He also averaged 8.5 rebounds and 2.5 steals a game. He was first team All-Mission Valley League.

Guard: Leo Li, Diamond Bar, Sr.
Guard: Ben Reaves, Gladstone, Sr.
Guard: Christian Manalo, Diamond Bar, Senior
Guard: Ryan OCampo, San Dimas, Jr.
Guard: Christian Espinoza, Los Altos, Junior
Guard: Eric Fonseca, Bishop Amat, Senior
Forward: Jacob Estrada, South Hills, Senior
Forward: Dane Hollar, Bonita, Senior
Center: Richie Rycraw, Walnut, Sr.
Center: Jayson Jones, Los Altos, Fr.

Azusa: Carlos Montiel, Sr.
Diamond Bar: Bobby Meshesha, Sr.
Diamond Ranch: Ernest Ugoagu, Sr.
Duarte: Eddie Howard, Sr.
El Monte: Jacob Moran, Sr.
Gladstone: Manny Chavira, Sr.
La Puente: Mathew Arguello, Sr.; Edwin Peraza, Sr.
Los Altos: Michael Barrera, Jr.
Walnut: Lawrence Besong, Sr., Jeff Huang, Sr.
West Covina: Jonah Mendoza, Sr.

1. Damien (22-7)
2. Walnut (22-6)
3. Glendora (18-10)
4. Wilson (20-8)
5. Bishop Amat (15-13)
6. Bonita (20-8)
7. Los Altos (17-10)
8. Workman (21-7)
9. Diamond Bar (11-17)
10. San Dimas (12-14)

Baseline: Etiwanda
Del Rey: Serra, Bishop Montgomery
Hacienda: Walnut
Mission Valley: Gabrielino
Montview: Workman
Sierra: Chino Hills
Valle Vista: Wilson

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Glendora High School to name tennis courts after former Glendora tennis tournament director Paul Baiotto

baiottoThere is likely no greater honor for a person than having something named after you, especially something you dedicated a big part of your life to.

That distinction will be bestowed on former Glendora Tennis Tournament director Paul Baiotto, who passed away in 2012. Biaotto, who made the Glendora Tennis Championships arguably one of the top summer events in the Valley for more than 40 years will receive the honor Thursday when the Glendora High School tennis courts will be named in his honor in a ceremony at 3 p.m. prior to the Tartans’ Baseline League match.

“It’s a big honor for Paul and we’re glad he’s getting this honor,” said Karen Baiotto, Paul’s wife. “He would be proud, but he would say it’s not just for him, but for those who worked with him. He would say they deserved the honor as well.”

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El Monte’s Adrian Castro remembered by friends, family at vigil Monday

Photo gallery of Monday’s vigil at El Monte High School



castroThe El Monte football team and football players from teams in the Mission Valley League are expected to attend tonight’s vigil at El Monte high school for Adrian Castro, the 18-year-old football player who died along with nine other people in a horrific bus crash in Orland while en route to Northern California on Friday to visit a college campus. The vigil starts at 7 p.m. El Monte coach Joel Sanchez said. Football teams from South El Monte, Gabrielino, Mountain View, Rosemead and Arroyo, who all compete against El Monte in the Mission Valley League, will all wear their high school football uniforms in honor of Castro, along with El Monte’s football team.

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Softball: Sydnie Trostle hits first-inning grand slam as Etiwanda powers over Glendora, 8-4

By Stephen Ramirez
@SteveRRamirez on Twitter
Sometimes, it’s not how you finish, but how you start that matters most.
It certainly was the case for the Etiwanda High School softball team Monday.
Sydnie Trostle and Vanessa Taukeiaho each hit first-inning home runs as the Eagles scored six runs in their opening at-bat en route to an 8-4 victory over host Glendora in a Baseline League game.
Etiwanda, also getting six shut innings from relief pitcher Alyssa Chavez, improved to 11-3-1 overall and 5-0 in league play. Glendora, getting two RBIs from Emilee Cain, slipped to 9-6 and 2-2.
Trostle, after the first three Eagle batters reached safely, got Etiwanda off to a quick start with a grand slam for a 4-0 lead in the first. Taukeiaho followed with a home run before Kiahna Silva singled home Christina Valdez for a 6-0 lead.
The Tartans didn’t go away quietly. They got back into it, making it 6-4 in their half of the first following an RBI single by Morgan Cutler, an RBI double by Kayla Sok and a two-run single by Cain.
Chavez limited Glendora to four hits over the final six innings to give Etiwanda the victory. She also struck out four and ended scoring chances in the second with a strike out and in the fifth by inducing a ground ball.

Etiwanda’s Sydnie Trostle: “She (Glendora starter Morgan Cutler) put it right there for me, where I like it inside. I just went for it, and I got it. It’s great to come out early and get the lead. It helps us in the end, and we got the win.”

Glendora’s Emilee Cain: “We just had to battle back. It’s hard, but we all pushed through. It was good that we didn’t hang our heads and kept pushing to get (the) runs back.”

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Best win over the weekend? Bonita knocks off Harvard-Westlake, 2-1 behind strong performance from Dakota Reidelbach

How impressive was Bonita’s 2-1 win at Harvard-Westlake on Saturday? Very. Pitcher Dakota Reidelbach pitched six strong innings, giving up one run while scattering four hits before giving way to Joe Willard to close the seventh. Chris Lopez and Brandon Bradshaw each had two hits as the ‘Cats improved to 12-5 while dropping Harvard-Westlake to 12-4.

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How sweep it is: Tribune boys and girls takes two from Star-News in 11th Tribune/Star-News Classic

Glendora's Thomas Rico (#5) with the Tribune All-Stars gets tied up by the Pasadena Star-News All-Stars in the Boys Basketball All-Star Classic at Damien High School in La Verne on Friday April 11, 2014. (Staff Photo by Keith Durflinger/San Gabriel Valley Tribune)

Glendora’s Thomas Rico (#5) with the Tribune All-Stars gets tied up by the Pasadena Star-News All-Stars in the Boys Basketball All-Star Classic at Damien High School in La Verne on Friday April 11, 2014.
(Staff Photo by Keith Durflinger/San Gabriel Valley Tribune)

By Stephen Ramirez
@SteveRRamirez on Twitter
Which side of the San Gabriel Valley is the best basketball played?
For one night, it appears its the east side that reigns surpreme after sweeping the boys and girls games Friday night in the 11th Tribune/Star-News All-Star Classic at Damien High School.
The Tribune All-Stars, getting 20 points from Walnut’s Rob Harrelson and 19 from Glendora’s Thomas Rico, rallied to beat their Star-News counterparts, 89-81.
In the girls game, Bonita’s Nikki Wheatley capped arguably one of the top area high school careers by scoring 18 points in leading the Tribune to a 85-60 victory.
Wheatley and Rico were their team’s game MVPs. The Star-News MVPs were Muir’s Dejon Williams, who had 12 points in the boys game, and the Mustangs’ Chy’annea Hodges, who had 11.
The Tribune now leads the boys’ series, 6-5, with the Tribune trimming the Star-News’ lead in the girls series to 6-5.
“This was great,” Rico said. “They were saying we’re undersized, so it’s great to come out and get the win.”
The Star-News, which rallied back from a 21-point deficit to tie the score at halftime, 44-44, looked like it might split the doubleheader when Alhambra’ Miles Ford (13 points) hit a 3-pointer and Keppel’s Adam Thompson converted a fast-break layup for a 70-66 lead. But then Rico, one of the area’s best 3-point shooters, got hot, scoring the next 12 points on three 3-pointers and a 3-point play for a 78-72 lead with 3:23 left.
The Star-News cut it to 87-81 with less than a minute left, but missed back-to-back 3-pointers with 30 seconds to play.
“I just wanted to make sure we got the win,” Rico said. “It got close, and I was able to take over and get us the win.”
The first half of the boys game was two halves in one before the teams settled for a 44-44 deadlock.
The Tribune, which got 13 first-half points from Harrelson, opened with a 34-13 blitz. Harrelson; Damien’s Cade Cunniff, who was a late replacement, and Glendora’s Thomas Rico each hit 3-pointers during the run.
But the Star-News team rallied back with runs of 11-0 and 20-8 to tie it at 44 at halftime.

Bonita's Nikki Wheatley (#10) with the Tribune All-Stars makes a shot as they play the Pasadena Star-News All-Stars in the Girls Basketball All-Star Classic at Damien High School in La Verne on Friday April 11, 2014. (Staff Photo by Keith Durflinger/San Gabriel Valley Tribune)

Bonita’s Nikki Wheatley (#10) with the Tribune All-Stars makes a shot as they play the Pasadena Star-News All-Stars in the Girls Basketball All-Star Classic at Damien High School in La Verne on Friday April 11, 2014. (Staff Photo by Keith Durflinger/San Gabriel Valley Tribune)

In the girls game, the Tribune All-Stars put it away early in the second half after opening with an 18-3 surge for a 56-30 lead with about 10 minutes to play. Wheatley, who also had six steals, scored 10 in the second half to put the finishing touches on her high school career, which includes being a four-time All-Area player.
“It feels good to finish with all these amazing girls,” Wheatley said. “It was really fun, and to play with these amazing players was a great way to end my high school career.”
Bishop Amat’s Paulina Santana and Dagmar Ramirez had 15 and nine points, respectively, for the Tribune

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El Monte football player Adrian Castro was killed in Thursday’s tragic bus crash that was carrying students to Humboldt State … RIP No. 1

“Adrian Castro will be missed as a student and football player. He was a good young man with a bright future. He will always be remembered by the El Monte family.” El Monte football coach Joel Sanchez

castroAdrian Castro, an El Monte High School senior who was on the bus that crashed in Orland Thursday was killed, an El Monte school official said.
Castro played on El Monte’s football team and was hoping to attend Humbolt State University, friends said.
Seniors Yohana Martinez and Lilianna Aldama said they were friends with Castro and that they observed a moment of silence for Castro after being told by teachers during their second period class that Castro died.
“Everybody was shocked. I just started crying,” Martinez said.
“He wanted to see his school and now he is gone,” Aldama said. “He just brought so much energy to people, he was always there for you, even if he didn’t know a person, he would talk to them.”

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Girls Soccer All-Area: Los Altos’ Samantha Verduzco and coach Chris Reeder earn top honors

TOP ROW (Left to Right): Jamie Peters (Bishop Amat), Jessica Lopez (Sierra Vista), Morgan Quarternik (San Dimas), Allison Kung (Wilson), Samantha Verduzco (Los Altos), Sophia Seraphin (Bishop Amat), Kelly Richardson (Los Altos).
BOTTOM ROW (Left to Right): Sabrina May (Diamond Bar), Daisy Duran (San Dimas), Evelyn Fierros (Bishop Amat), Hailey Zerbel (South Hills), Shayla Harris (South Hills).

PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Samantha Verduzco, Los Altos, Senior

Los Altos coach Chris Reeder maintains he’s had better superstar players in the past, but few could match-up to what Samantha Verduzco gave her team to help win the Hacienda League title and advance to the CIF-Southern Section Division 3 semifinals before finishing the season, 21-3-3.
A target striker, Verduzco used her size to get create havoc on set-pieces, particularly long throw-ins and corner kicks that she could rise up and finish. But she was also nifty with the ball, finding ways to get off her own shot or create better ones for others.
“That’s kind of how she scored all year long, she makes big plays up top,” is how Los Altos coach Chris Reeder described her. “She’s kind of a ball-hawk around the (penalty area).”
The Hacienda League MVP and CIF-SS Division 3 first-team honoree made everyone better for one of the area’s best teams and has been selected the girls soccer player of the year.
Verduzco, who is heading to Biola next, finished with 21 goals and 10 assists.
She scored the lone goal in a 1-0 victory over Diamond Bar that ultimately paved the way for the league title

REEDERCOACH OF THE YEAR: Chris Reeder, Los Altos
By his own admission, few expected the Los Altos girls soccer team to not only win the Hacienda League title but advance to the CIF-Southern Section Division 3 semifinals before losing a heartbreaker in sudden-death overtime, losing on a penalty kick minutes before a penalty shootout to Lakewood St. Joseph’s, falling 1-0. “I’m proud of our girls,” Reeder said following the loss. “This is the best team I’ve ever coached. I’ve had better players, but I’ve never had a better team.”
Reeder, who has been named the Tribune coach of the year for the second time, deserves credit for that. He molded his team into a defensive monster by only allowing five goals in league and only 15 all season before finishing up 21-3-3. It was also the second time in four years that he had led his team to the semifinals.

KELLY RICHARDSON, Los Altos, Senior, Defender

The Hacienda League first-team selection also was named to the CIF-SS Division 3 first-team after leading the best defense in the area as the central back. The Conquerors only allowed 15 goals all season, finishing 21-3-3 and advancing to the semifinals before losing in penalty kicks to Lakewood St. Joseph.

MORGAN QUARTERNIK, San Dimas, Senior, Defender
Was the central defender on the undefeated Valle Vista league champions that only allowed four goals in league. She helped the Saints reach the Division 6 quarterfinals and was named to the Division 6 first team. She also earned league first-team honors for the second consecutive season.

SABRINA MAY, Diamond Bar, Sophomore, Defender
One of two sophomores on the first team, May was named to the CIF-SS Division 3 first team and also was a Hacienda League first-team selection. She was part of a defense that only allowed five goals in league and helped the Brahmas reach the Division 3 quarterfinals.

SHAYLA HARRIS, South Hills, Senior, Defender
Considering how brutally difficult the Sierra League was, earning defensive league most valuable player honors and being named to the Division 2 first team was an impressive accomplishment. She was the central defender on a team that only allowed 21 goals against an extremely tough schedule.

JAMIE PETERS, Bishop Amat, Junior, Midfielder
The Lancers’ attacking midfielder could finish as well as set others up, finishing with 16 goals and 19 assists for the Del Rey league champion Lancers. She started on a CIF championship team as a sophomore and earned league first-team honors this past season in helping her team reach the second round.

JESSICA LOPEZ, Sierra Vista, Senior, Midfielder
The areas leading scorer had another remarkable season in leading the Dons to their fourth straight Montview league title while picking up most valuable player honors for the second straight season. She finished with 35 goals and 30 assists in leading her team to a 21-4 overall record and Division 6 quarterfinal appearance.

DAISY DURAN, San Dimas, Senior, Forward
The goal-scoring machine finished with 29 goals and 14 assists for the Valle Vista league champion Saints, who advanced to the CIF-SS Division 6 quarterfinals. Duran was named the league most valuable player and also was selected to the Division 6 first team.

SOPHIA SERAFIN, Bishop Amat, Freshman, Forward
The only freshman on the first team had an incredible first season, finishing with 28 goals and 16 assists for the Del Rey league champion Lancers, who also advanced to the CIF-Southern Section Division 3 second round. Serafin was named the Del Rey league most valuable player and also was named to the Division 3 first team.

HAILEY ZERBEL, South Hills, Sophomore, Forward
Was part of one of the best Huskies teams ever, finishing second in the Sierra League to eventual CIF-SS Division 2 champion Chino Hills while helping her team to an 18-4-2 overall record and second-round appearance in the Division 2 playoffs. She was named to the Sierra League first team, finishing with 21 goals and four assists

ALLISON KUNG, Wilson, Senior, Forward
One of the best attackers in the area, Kung was rewarded by being selected to the CIF-SS Division 6 first team while also earning Valle Vista league first team honors. Kung helped her team to the second round of the Division 6 playoffs, finishing with 24 goals and six assists.

EVELYN FIERROS, Bishop Amat, Senior, Goalkeeper
Was named the Del Rey league goalkeeper of the year, finishing with 14 shutouts while only allowing 24 goals. She helped the Lancers reach the second round of the CIF-SS Division 3 playoffs and won a championship as a junior.

Defender: Joni Gener, Bishop Amat, Sr.
Defender: Kelci Boone, South Hills, Sr.
Defender: Jazzmyn Esquivel, Los Altos, Jr.
Midfielder: Leah Kolek, Diamond Bar, Sr.
Midfielder: Hanna Armandariz, Bishop Amat, Jr.
Midfielder: Heidi Serna, South Hills, Sr.
Midfielder: Holly Abdelkader, St. Lucy’s, Sr.
Midfielder: Rachel Curley, Bonita, Jr.
Forward: Daisy Ruiz, Sierra Vista, Sr.
Forward: Amber Marinero, South Hills, So.
Goalkeeper: Britain Chaputa, San Dimas, Jr.

1. South Hills (18-4-2)
2. Los Altos (21-3-3)
3. Diamond Bar (18-5-3)
4. Bishop Amat (19-6-3)
5. San Dimas (18-7)
6. Sierra Vista (21-4)
7. Wilson (12-10-4)
8. Azusa (10-6-4)
9. Baldwin Park (9-8-5)
10. Bonita (10-13)

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Boys Soccer All-Area: Sierra Vista’s Michael Flores and Baldwin Park’s Danny Vega share top honors

TOP ROW (Left to Right): Guy Horcasitas (Diamond Bar), Elmer Jacobs (Sierra Vista), Mario Saenz (Sierra Vista), Manny Medina (Los Altos), Alfredo Navarro (Arroyo), Michael Flores (Sierra Vista), Eduardo Suarez (Baldwin Park), Javier Jasso (Baldwin Park)
BOTTOM ROW (Left to Right): Andre Gamboa (Diamond Bar), Jesse Hernandez (Northview), Isaiah Romero (Los Altos), Danny Vega (Baldwin Park), Andy Castillo (Baldwin Park).

SOCPLAYERSCO PLAYERS OF THE YEAR: Michael Flores (Sierra Vista); Danny Vega (Baldwin Park)
Both seniors, Sierra Vista’s Michael Flores may go down as the best player in school history while Baldwin Park’s Danny Vega finished off one of the greatest runs in area history to share San Gabriel Valley Tribune player of the year honors.
Flores helped Sierra Vista to one of its best seasons in history, advancing to the CIF-Southern Section Division 4 semifinals before losing its only game of the season, a 2-1 loss to Oak Hills, to finish 23-1-2.
Flores was the midfield general, earning Montview league MVP honors as well as being named to the CIF-SS Division 4 first team after finishing the season with 16 goals and 28 assists.
Vega finished among the section leaders in goals scored, finishing with an area-leading 40 that was topped with a clutch playoff run that resulted in the Braves winning the CIF-Southern Section Division 5 championship in a 5-4 penalty shootout over Marshall after a scoreless regulation and two overtimes.
Vega started the playoffs by scoring all four goals in a 4-0 win over Laguna Beach, while also scoring in wins over Diamond Bar, Estancia and notching the final penalty kick in the shootout to help the Braves raise their second championship trophy in four years. Vega was named the Valle Vista league MVP and also was named to the CIF-SS Division 5 first team.

mIRACOACH OF THE YEAR: Ricardo Mira, Baldwin Park
The longtime Braves coach earned his second coach of the year honor after leading the Braves to the Valle Vista league championship and CIF-Southern Section Division 5 title, beating Marshall 5-4 in penalty kicks after a 0-0 tie in regulation and two overtimes.
It was the second championship in four years for the Braves coach, who also won the Division 5 title in 2011 and advanced to the finals in 2010.

JESSE HERNANDEZ, Northview, Senior, Defender
The Valle Vista League first-team selection helped the Vikings to their best season in history, finishing second in league to eventual Division 5 champion Baldwin Park while advancing to the quarterfinals. Hernandez was the central back given the assignment of marking the opposing teams top players.

ELMER JACOBS, Sierra Vista, Junior, Defender
Arguably the areas best defender the junior was named first team all Montview League and was selected to the CIF-SS Division 4 first team. He was part of a team that lost one game all season, in the Division 4 semifinals to Oak Hills, helping his team finish a remarkable 23-1-2 while leading a defense that only allowed 17 goals all season.

EDUARDO SUAREZ, Baldwin Park, Senior, Defender
The smooth defender/midfielder was named to the Valle Vista first-team and also was selected to the CIF-SS Division 5 first-team as part of the Braves’ championship squad. He was pivotal in the final against Marshall, helping his team pitch a shutout to get to the penalty shootout, which the Braves won 5-4 on PKs.

JAVIER JASSO, Baldwin Park, Senior, Midfielder
The architect on the field was a playmaker and goal scorer for the Braves and turned the volume up in the playoffs, culminating with a Division 5 title and earning Jasso Division 5 player of the year honors. He scored big-time goals in the playoffs and also was named to the Valle Vista League first team after helping the Braves to the league title.

GUY HORCASITAS, Diamond Bar, Junior, Midfielder
The Hacienda League first-team selection finished with 16 goals and five assists for the league co-champion Brahmas, who advanced to the Division 5 quarterfinals before losing a heartbreaking game to eventual champion Baldwin Park, 2-1. The attacking midfielder will be a force in 2014-15 along with scoring partner Andre Gamboa.

FREDDY NAVARRO, Arroyo, Junior, Midfielder.
The Knights’ sturdy playmaker was named co-most valuable player of the Mission Valley League in helping the Knights to a second-place finish along with El Monte, finishing only a half-game back of Mountain View in the highly competitive league.

ANDY CASTILLO, Baldwin Park, Senior, Midfielder
One of four Braves players named to the CIF-Southern Section Division 5 first team and also a Valle Vista league first-team selection for the league champion and CIF championship squad. Castillo worked both sides of the midfield, getting back on defense on counters and working the offensive end on breakaways.

MANNY MEDINA, Los Altos, Senior, Forward
Named the Hacienda League most valuable player after helping the Conquerors share the league title along with Diamond Bar. Medina finished with 13 goals and two assists, including a hat-trick in a 4-2 victory over West Covina.

ANDRE GAMBOA, Diamond Bar, Junior, Forward.
One of the areas best pure goal scorers, Gamboa was named Hacienda League co-most valuable player and finished with 22 goals and 10 assists. He helped the Brahmas to an upset over second-seed Monrovia in the second round of the Division 5 playoffs and helped take eventual champion Baldwin Park to the wire before losing 2-1 in the quarterfinals.

MARIO SAENZ, Sierra Vista, Senior, Forward
One of the areas best goal scorers, Saenz finished with 25 goals and four assists, earning Montview League first-team honors as well as being named to the CIF-SS Division first team. Saenz helped the Dons to one of its best seasons in history, finishing 23-1-2 in advancing to the Division 4 semifinals before losing its only game of the season 2-1 to Oak Hills.

ISAIAH ROMERO, Los Altos, Senior, Goalkeeper
Named the Hacienda League most valuable goalkeeper on the co-league championship team. Romero boasted nine shutouts and allowed just 26 goals all season.

Defender: Garret Souza, Damien, Jr.
Defender: Steve Flores, Charter Oak, Sr.
Defender: Tim Ebiner, Damien, Jr.
Defender: Spencer Brose, Diamond Bar, Sr.
Midfielder: Juan Gonzales, Los Altos, Sr.
Midfielder: Eli Sanchez, Damien, Sr.
Midfielder: Miguel Cruz, El Monte, Sr.
Midfielder: Christian Palacios, Northview, Sr.
Forward: Jacob Bianchessi, Damien, Sr.
Forward: Brandon Arconado, Bishop Amat, Jr.
Goalkeeper: Cesar Rosales, Sierra Vista, Sr.

1. Sierra Vista (23-1-2)
2. Baldwin Park (21-5-2)
3. Damien (14-4-4)
4. Northview (17-5-2)
5. Diamond Bar (17-8-3)
6. Los Altos (12-6-6)
7. Bishop Amat (10-7-3)
8. El Monte (12-3-1)
9. Arroyo (12-4-4)
10. Duarte (15-7)

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Biggest Little Track Meet in the Country: Arcadia Invitational starts on Friday

Arcadia Invitational
Friday Night Relays session from 4:30 to 10 p.m.
Saturday Open session from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Saturday Invitational session from 4 p.m. -10 p.m.
Adults, $7
; Students w/ HS ID, $7; 
Children 12 & under, $5.

Saturday (All Day): 
Adults, $15; 
Students w/ HS ID, $10; 
Children 12 & under, $5

ARCADIA INVITE PREVIEW: Track and field in the U.S. might be back on an upswing.
It still may not be the first pulse of the average American adult, but it apparently is hitting heartbeats among the nation’s youth.
Arcadia Invitational track and field meet director Rich Gonzales knows it is happening. It is why he will be pushing for bigger fields in future years,
“Honestly, we’re at the point where we need to find a way to make it larger,” he said. “There are so many people not getting in.
“The demand is obviously there. There are so many people that are turned away and they are good people. Our cutoff on the bottom end gets tougher each year.”
The three-day 47th annual meet, which begins today at Arcadia High School, has nearly 4,000 athletes from 712 high schools in 30 U.S. states, Canada, Mexico, Australia and New Zealand competing. It’s been roughly the same amount of athletes competing for the last several years.


Bob Ramsey is a former San Gabriel Valley area coach who created a webpage specifically for our area, ranking the best performers in the Tribune, Star-News and Whittier Daily News area. Here are his top ten boys/girls area track rankings. For individual rankings, click on the thread.


1. Arcadia
2. Walnut
3. Monrovia
4. South Pasadena
5. Glendora
6. La Salle
7. Muir
8. Bishop Amat
9. Bonita
10. South Hills
1. Damien
2. Walnut
3. Arcadia
4. California
5. Santa Fe
6. Covina
7. Monrovia
8. St. Francis
9. Glendora
10. Maranatha

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Baseball: Damien makes South Hills pay for miscues, routs Huskies, 10-2, to take control of Sierra League race

Damien's Grant Hockin (C), left, celebrates with teammate David Banuelos (C) (18) after scoring in the second inning of a prep baseball game at Damien High School in La Verne, Calif., on Wednesday, April 9, 2014.  (Keith Birmingham Pasadena Star-News)

Damien’s Grant Hockin (C), left, celebrates with teammate David Banuelos (C) (18) after scoring in the second inning of a prep baseball game at Damien High School in La Verne, Calif., on Wednesday, April 9, 2014.
(Keith Birmingham Pasadena Star-News)

By Stephen Ramirez
@SteveRRamirez on Twitter

LA VERNE – When your success relies on pitching and defense and you don’t catch the ball, bad things usually happen.
They did for South Hills High School Wednesday afternoon, and host Damien took full advantage.
Grant Hockin and Jonathan Olsen each had two hits and two RBIs and Hockin was solid on the mound as the Spartans took control of the Sierra League baseball race with a 10-2 victory over the Huskies.
Damien, also getting two RBIs from Jordan Abernathy, improved to 12-2 and 4-0 in league play. Hockin gave up five hits and struck out five in six innings to improve to 7-0. Damien had eight hits.
South Hills, which committed five errors before breaking the shutout with a two-run home run by Francisco Ramirez in the sixth, slipped to 12-2-1 and 3-1.
Hockin got Damien rolling early with a triple to lead off the second inning. He then scored for a 1-0 lead following back-to-back errors. The Spartans pushed it 2-0 in the third on a double by Olsen and a RBI single by Grant Woodward before scoring five unearned runs in the fourth with help from two South Hills’ errors for a 7-0 lead. Hockin and Olsen each had two-run singles as Damien sent 10 batters to the plate.

Damien’s Grant Hockin: “Wining this game means a lot, because now we’re in first place alone. South Hills is kind of like our arch rival, so it feels really good to beat them. They made errors and we capitalized on them. The score showed that.”

South Hills coach Darren Murphy: “This was bound to happen. We’ve played really well, we’ve hit well, we’ve played good defense, we’ve pitched well. When it rains, it pours, and we opened the door against a good team and a good team exposed us.”

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Rankings the Tribune’s best softball pitchers of all-time: You have to go with Charter Oak’s Christy Tucker at No. 1

With South Hills freshman pitcher Natalie Lugo already committed to Florida and one of the best pitchers to arrive on the area scene in years with this much potential, it got me wondering who are the ten best area pitchers of all time (Tribune area). I’m going to take a stab at this, here goes … Pictured below is former St. Lucy’s pitcher Danielle O’Toole, who checks in at No. 9.
1. Christy Tucker, Charter Oak – Won two championships. She led the Chargers to the 1990 4A championship as a freshman and won another title as a senior in Division II in 1993 while also earning D-II player of the year honors after recording 28 wins, which ranks amongst best all time for a single season. Um, family also owns Tucker Tire in Covina, my favorite place.
2. Rhonda Wheatley, Workman — Was named Division 2A co-player of the year in 1983 after leading the Lobos to a 1-0 victory over South Hills in the 2A final. She is the mother of former Tribune player of the year Courtney Gano, and Wheatley was among the NCAA’s best while setting all sorts of records at Cal Poly Pomona.
3. Mary Letourneau, Covina – Led Colts to 3A title in 1989 and was named player of the year. Widely considered among best ever.
4. Monica Messmer — Incredibly, she threw five consecutive no-hitters, which is one shy of the all-time CIF record. She was named co-player of the year with Wheatley in 1983, losing the 2A final in dramatic fashion, 1-0.
5. Jamee Juarez, Wilson — She went 19-3 with a 0.17 ERA and 251 strikeouts in 2002 for the Wildcats and went on to star at Ohio State.
6. Stacy Vogliardo, South Hills – Led Huskies to 1997 Division IV title in 2-1 victory over St. Paul and was named the D-IV player of the year and made the LA Times’ first team.
7. April Valdez, Wilson — Named 2000 Division III player of the year after leading the Wildcats to the title, winning 8-0 over Pacifica.
8. Erica Spano, San Dimas — She led the Saints to the Division IV title in 2001, winning 3-2 over Lompoc. She was named the Division IV player of the year.
9. Danielle O’Toole — The St. Lucy’s pitcher was the best I’ve seen over the last decade. She was named to the All-Area team three times during her stint with the Regents from 2009-12, earning all-CIF honors her senior year. O’toole is turning heads now at San Diego State.
10. Diana Lynn-Patterson – She’s the only back-to-back area player of the year over the last decade, earning the award in 2008 and ’09.

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Softball Rankings: South Hills and freshman newbie pitcher Natalie Lugo lead the way

lugoTribune Softball Rankings
1. South Hills (11-3) — Hearing freshman pitcher Natalie Lugo is the real deal. She’s already verbally committed to Florida and is 7-1 with a 0.25 ERA.
2. Bishop Amat (11-4) — Already 4-1 in the Del Rey. As pitching improves so does its record.
3. Glendora (10-4) — Won San Dimas tournament and hoping to make a run at the Baseline League title.
4. Bonita (7-3) — Clearly the favorite to win the Hacienda after opening with a win over West Covina.
5. Charter Oak (10-4) – Can beat anyone, but also loses a surprising game here and there.
6. West Covina (8-5) – Hit and miss. When Bulldogs are on they’re really on. When they’re not, they’re not.
7. San Dimas (7-6) – Best team in the watered-down Valle Vista.
8. Los Altos (6-4) — Already 2-0 in the Hacienda.
9. St. Lucy’s (6-7-1) – Advanced to the finals of the Northview tournament with a young squad.
1-. Edgewood (9-1) — My alma mater has some hitters and is already gearing up for 2015 in the new Miramonte.

Hitting Leaders (Based on Maxpreps)
1. Idalis Jimenez, Edgewood, .625 (20-for-32)
2. Alex Rodriguez, West Covina, .595 (22-for-37)
3. Celeste Wood, Los Altos, .583 (14-for-24)
4. Ashley Diaz, South El Monte, .576 (19-for-33)
5. Ciara Granado, Edgewood, .576 (19-for-33)
6. Alyssa Yanes, Edgewood, .567 (17-for-30)
7. Jenna Rodelo, Rowland, .560 (14-for-25)
8. Jocelyn Marquez, Northview, .545 (20-for-44)
9. Evelyn Sandoval, Arroyo, .542 (13-for-34)
10. Taylor Muse, Baldwin Park, .538 (14-for-26).

HOME RUN LEADERS: Ashley Diaz, South El Monte (6), Ciara Granado, Edgewood (6); Shannon Skrzynski, Diamond Ranch (5).
RBI LEADERS: Idalis Jimenez, Edgewood (26), Ciara Granado, Edgewood (26), Ashley Diaz, South El Monte (20)
ERA LEADERS: Natalie Lugo, South Hills (0.25), Princess Nava, Covina (0.76), Brooke Clemetson, Charter Oak (1.00)
WIN-LOSS LEADERS: Cambria Keefer, Glendora, (8-1); Natalie Lugo, South Hills, (7-1); Nicole Nishimura, Diamond Ranch (6-2).

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Baseball Rankings: No. 1 South Hills and No. 2 Damien both 3-0 in Sierra and meet on Wednesday

Tribune Baseball Rankings
1. South Hills (12-1-1) – Won a tournament in South Carolina and faces Damien for first in Sierra on Wednesday.
2. Damien (11-2) — Spartans’ only two losses by one run each heading into Wednesday’s showdown with South Hills.
3. Glendora (9-4) – Advanced to the semifinals of the tough Boras Classic.
4. San Dimas (9-5) – After a quick start, Tribune’s pre-season No. 1 has lost three straight.
5. Bonita (9-5) — Allowing more runs than in past years, but still Hacienda league favorite.
6. Diamond Bar (10-6) — Why do the Brahmas always lose to Bonita? Oh wait, they finally got them.
7. Bishop Amat (5-6) — Against the best-of-the-best, Amat is an average team with an average record. But still favored to win the Del Rey.
8. Nogales (10-3-1) — Record impressive again, but will it be good enough to make a run at the Valle Vista league title?
9. Sierra Vista (10-2) – Already 4-0 in the Montview
10. Charter Oak (8-5) – Winners of four straight after winning the Don Lugo tournament.

Hitting leaders (based on Maxpreps)
1. Mark Gonzales, Pomona, .600, (14-for-29)
2. David Banuelos, Damien, .543 (19-for-35)
3. Matt Arguello, La Puente, .531 (17-for-32)
4. Jordan Abernathy, Damien, 500 (18-for-36)
5. Brandon Buna, Rowland, .500 (13-for-26)
6. Ryan Viramontes, West Covina, .488 (20-for-41)
7. Michael Guzman, Baldwin Park, .485 (16-for-33)
8. Eric Hernandez, Sierra Vista, .485 (16-for-33)
9. Derian Torres, Sierra Vista, .484 (15-for-31)
10. Erick Morales, La Puente, .457 (16-for-35)

HOME RUN LEADERS: Francisco Ramirez, South Hills (3), Jordan Abernathy, Damien (3), David Banuelos, Damien (3).
RBI LEADERS: David Banuelos, Damien (18), Alex Gonzalez, Bonita (16), Jordan Abernathy, Damien (16).
ERA LEADERS: Gavin Velasquez, South Hills (0.31), Anthony Deeter, West Covina (0.43), Christian Longoria, Walnut (0.67).
PITCHING RECORDS: Grant Hockin, Damien (6-0), Christian Longoria, Walnut (5-0), Anthony Deeter, West Covina (5-0).

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CIF-SS Baseball, softball polls: South Hills baseball No. 2 in D2; Bishop Amat softball No. 4 in D3

This week’s CIF-Southern Section baseball and softball polls are out, and South Hills leads the way among area teams, ranked No. 2 in Division 2 baseball. Six area teams are ranked among the seven divisions. Damien and Glendora are Nos. 8 and 9, respectively, in D2, with San Dimas and Nogales No. 3 and 10 in Division 4 and Sierra Vista No. 6 in Division 5.
In softball, Bishop Amat is ranked the highest, sitting at No. 4 in Division 3 for the second consecutive week. South Hills and Charter Oak are Nos. 6 and 10, respectively, in Division 2, with San Dimas No. 9 in Division 5.


sB polls

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Four-time champion and former South Hills football coach Steve Bogan will take over at Maranatha

STORY: Steve Bogan, who won four CIF championships during a highly successful 20-year run at South Hills, has been named the new head coach at Maranatha.
Bogan resigned from South Hills in early 2012. He won four CIF championships, 13 league championships and was 31-10 in the playoffs. He recently returned to coaching at South Hills, but at the freshman level.

IN THE HUDDLE: Absolute coup by Maranatha. Bogan’s track record is just about unparalleled around these parts and he should be the long-term fit that Maranatha’s been needing to take things to the next level and beyond — Aram Tolegian.


Maranatha press release: Maranatha High School is pleased to welcome Steve Bogan as their new Head FootballCoach. With over 30 years of coaching experience, Coach Bogan brings to Maranatha significant experience in building a quality football program and developing student-athletes. He served as the head coach of South Hills High School for 20 years. During that tenure he led his teams to 10 League Championships, reaching the CIF Quarterfinals 11 years in a row, and made 8 Semi-Final appearances. His teams have reached the CIF Finals 5 times, winning 4 CIF Championships in three different divisions.

Regarded by many as one of the best coaches in Southern California, Coach Bogan was named the San Gabriel Valley Tribune Coach of the Decade (2000-2009), during which time the Tribune and CIF-SS also named him Divisional Coach of the Year twice. He has coached in numerous All-Star games and has been a presenter at a number of coaching clinics throughout the years. Coach Bogan’s teams at South Hills had a 32 – 12 playoff record (73%) covering three league and four divisional moves over a 20-year period.

Continue reading

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South Hills baseball wins Mingo Bay Classic, beats Myrtle Beach 9-0 in South Carolina to improve to 12-1-1

frankieThe Huskies wreapped up the Mingo Bay Classic with their fifth win to claim the championship, defeating Myrtle Beach in South Carolina, 9-0. Frank Ramirez, who was named tournament MVP, went 2 for 4 with a pair of doubles and RBIs. Gavin Velasquez threw four scoreless innings with eight strikeouts and just one hit allowed to earn the win, improving to 3-1. Marcus Campos pitched two innings in relief and tallied three hits. Johnny Dearth threw the final inning to complete the shutout for the Huskies, who belted outs 12 hits to improve to 12-1-1

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Boras Classic: Slow start dooms Glendora in 4-1 loss to Vista Murrieta

By Stephen Ramirez
@SteveRRamirez on Twitter
Sometimes it’s not how you finish, but how you start that can make the difference in a high school baseball game.
It certainly was the case for Glendora Thursday.
Vista Murrieta took advantage of five walks and an error during the first two innings to score a 4-1 victory over the Tartans in a Boras Classic semifinal game at JSerra Catholic School.
The Broncos, who were held to two hits by Glendora pitchers Ryan Beyer and Jake Nelson, improved to 10-3 and will face either Mater Dei or Temecula Valley for the championship at 6 p.m. on Saturday at Mater Dei. Glendora, getting a RBI double from Nick Kaye, slipped to 9-3. The Tartans will face the Mater Dei-Temecula Valley loser for third place at Mater Dei at 3 p.m.
Glendora coach Dan Henley: “They are a quality ball club. We struggled early with throwing strikes, so they had a lot of opportunities, a lot of base runners. I look at the score, I was pleased we had an opportunity (late). We’re finding ourselves. This (tournament) is a positive experience for us. But if we want to get better, we have to execute early on.”

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Bishop Amat boys, girls find out what Del Rey Leagues (other than football) they will compete in next year if approved


Now that football is settled, the Del Rey League association is divided into three leagues for boys and girls sports starting in the fall. These are the recommendations that will be sent to league principals to get an email vote for approval. If they get approved as expected, they will become final and sent to CIF. But knowing how things have gone, nothing’s ever final until its final.




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Boras Classic: Kale Morton pitches Glendora over San Dimas to advance to semifinals

By Stephen Ramirez
@SteveRRamirez on Twitter
The area was already guaranteed of placing a team in the Boras Baseball Classic semifinals when San Dimas faced Glendora in the tournament quarterfinals Tuesday at Mater Dei High School.
Kale Morton made sure it was the Tartans who advanced.
The senior tossed a two-hitter to lead Glendora to a 5-0 victory over the Saints in a battle featuring two teams ranked in the area top 10.
The Tartans, also getting two RBIs each from Griffen Herrera and Justin Cage, led 3-0 after the first inning. Glendora improved to 9-2 and will face either JSerra or Vista Murrieta in Thursday’s semifinals at 6 p.m. at JSerra in San Juan Capistrano.
San Dimas, getting hits from Josh Avila and Daniel Millwee, slipped to 9-3. The Saints will play the loser of JSerra-Vista Murrieta game in a seventh-place semifinal at 3 p.m. on Thursday at Mater Dei.
Morton, who improved to 4-0, retired the first eight batters and didn’t allow a hit until Avila bunted for a single in fifth. Morton then hit David Vargas, but retired Jessie Garcia to end the inning. Millwee had an infield single in the sixth before Morton retired San Dimas in order in the seventh for the win.
Glendora took a 3-0 lead in the first, taking advantage of three walks by Peter Lambert before Herrera doubled to left for a 2-0 advantage. Cage followed with a RBI single to make it 3-0. The catcher also had a RBI single in the fifth for a 5-0 lead.
Glendora’s Kale Morton: “I felt good today. I commanded the zone, every pitch was working. I liked the first inning when we scored three runs. It gives me less pressure to pitch.”

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