About Fred Robledo

Fred J. Robledo is the local sports editor for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group

Girls Soccer Playoffs: Bishop Amat and Covina earn top seeds

Girls Soccer brackets

By Fred J. Robledo
The Bishop Amat girls soccer team, with two CIF-SS championships in the past decade, earned the top seed in Division 3 while Covina, winners of the Valle Vista League for its first-ever girls soccer title, was awarded the second seed in Division 5.
The CIF pairings for all divisions were released Monday, with wild card games scheduled Tuesday and first round games on Thursday. All games will either start at 3 p.m. or 5 p.m., depending on the home team’s preference.
South Hills (13-8-1), which won the Division 3 and Southern California Regional Division III state championship championship a year ago, was bumped to Division 1. But after finishing third in the Palomares League, the Huskies will have the tough challenge of hitting the road to take on Baseline League champion Upland (14-3-4) in the first round of the toughest division.
Top seed Bishop Amat (21-3), winners of the Del Rey League, will open the Division 3 playoffs at home against the winner of Tuesday’s wild card between Lancaster (7-12-1) and North Torrance (15-7).
Claremont and Glendora finished tied for the Palomares League title, but Claremont (19-2-2) earned the league’s first-place entry based on head-to-head and will open at home against Desert Sky League third-place Barstow (12-5-5).
Glendora (17-4-2) got what it wanted, a home game in the first round against Del Rey second-place Placentia Valencia (11-11-2) at Citrus College.
In Division 4, Hacienda runner-up Walnut (7-10-1) is on the road at Sunkist League champion Bloomington (12-2-4).
West Covina (12-3-8), winners of the Hacienda League for the first time ever, will take on the wild card winner between Westridge (12-4-2) and Nipomo (10-8-4).
Sierra Vista (12-6-3), which rallied from a slow start to win the Montview League, will host the wild card winner between Eastside (17-5) and Sierra Canyon (13-2-2).
Although Covina (13-5-2) earned the second-seed in Division 5, it has a tough opening game against Desert Valley third-place Cathedral City (16-8-1).
Valle Vista third-place San Dimas (10-11-2) is on the road at Camino Real league champion St. Genevieve (16-2-1) with Rowland (14-7-2) making the long trip to take on top-seed Palm Desert (16-4-4).
Nogales (14-4-4) finished second in the Valle Vista behind Covina and will be on the road at Rancho Verde (12-7-3).
South El Monte (8-10-3) is at Hemet (12-8-1) in a Division 5 wild card.
Duarte is the lone local team in Division 6. Duarte (9-9-4) will be at San Andreas league champion Jurupa Hills (15-3-4).
In Division 7, Mission Valley runner-up Arroyo (11-5-6) and Pomona (10-3) will take on wild-card survivors in the first round.
Arroyo will host the winner between Cantwell Sacred Heart (5-13-1) and St. Mary’s Academy (7-15-1) while Pomona awaits the winner between Capistrano Valley Christian (6-3-2) and Ramona Convent (6-7-2)
El Monte (6-9-3) is at St. Paul (8-9-2) in a Division 7 wild card Tuesday, with the winner advancing to face Dunn (9-3-1).

Girls Soccer playoff schedule
All games tentatively scheduled for 3 p.m. or 5 p.m.
Division 1 – Thursday’s first round
South Hills at Upland
Division 3 – Thursday’s first round
WC winner at Bishop Amat
Barstow at Claremont
Placentia Valencia vs. Glendora at Citrus College
Division 4 – Thursday’s first round
Walnut at Bloomington
WC Winner at West Covina
WC Winner at Sierra Vista
Division 5 – Tuesday’s wild card
South El Monte at Hemet
Thursday’s first round
Rowland at Palm Desert
Nogales at Rancho Verde
San Dimas at St. Genevieve
Cathedral City at Covina
Division 6 – Thursday’s first round
Duarte at Jurupa Hills
Division 7 – Tuesday’s wild card
El Monte at St. Paul
Thursday’s first round
WC Winner at Arroyo
WC Winner at Pomona

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Boys Soccer Playoffs: Nogales earns top seed in Division 6

Boys Soccer brackets

By Fred J. Robledo
CIF Southern Section division realignment paid big dividends for the Nogales boys soccer team, earning the top seed in the Division 6 playoffs after winning the Montview League title.Nogales (15-3-4) will open the playoffs on Friday against the winner of Wednesday’s wild-card between Crean Lutheran (10-8-2) and California Academy of Math and Science (8-3-1).
The CIF pairings for all divisions were released Monday, with wild card games scheduled Wednesday and first round games on Friday. All games will either start at 3 p.m. or 5 p.m., depending on the home team’s preference.
In other Division 6 first-round games La Puente (11-2-5) will host South Pasadena (10-4-3) in a battle between second place teams. There are two Division 6 wild card games Wednesday with Carpinteria (5-10-3) at Arroyo (13-6-2) and Azusa (8-8-3) hosting Hawthorne MSA (5-6-1).
Two locals teams will compete in Division 3 with Palomares third-place Diamond Bar (9-9-1) having the tough task of taking on top-seed Garden Grove Santiago (19-1-5) while Bishop Amat (7-14) visits Pioneer League second-place entry West Torrance (11-5-3).
Glendora, the Palomares league champion, is the lone participant in Division 4. Glendora (12-5-2) will host Pacific League third-place Hoover (14-6-4) in the opening round.
The majority of area boys soccer teams are in Division 5 and there are some intriguing local games in the first round.
Rio Hondo runner-up Monrovia (15-7-4) is at Mission Valley League champion El Monte (14-5-2) while Hacienda third-place Walnut (13-7-1) travels to take on Valle Vista league champion Baldwin Park (15-3-3).
Mission Valley third-place Mountain View (7-8-7) is on the road at Miramonte league champion Garey (13-4-3) and Mission Valley runner-up South El Monte (10-2-3) hits the road at Hacienda league champion Chino (17-5-1).
In other Division 5 first round games, Sierra Vista (12-6-4) is at Moreno Valley (15-6-1) while Diamond Ranch (11-9-4) is at Antelope Valley (14-5-2) and Pomona (8-10-2) visits second-seed Rialto (13-2-5).
In Division 7, Northview (8-10-2), who finished third in the Valle Vista league, is at Public Safety Academy (4-7-1) in a wild card game Wednesday.

Boys Soccer playoff schedule
All games tentatively scheduled for 3 or 5 p.m.
Division 3 – Friday’s first round

Diamond Bar at Garden Grove Santiago
Bishop Amat at West Torrance
Division 4 – Friday’s first round
Hoover at Glendora
Division 5 – Friday’s first round
South El Monte at Chino
Mountain View at Garey
Sierra Vista at Moreno Valley
Monrovia at El Monte
Walnut at Baldwin Park
Diamond Ranch at Antelope Valley
Pomona at Rialto
Division 6 – Wednesday’s wild card
Carpinteria at Arroyo
Hawthorne MSA at Azusa
Friday’s first round
WC Winner at Nogales
South Pasadena at La Puente
Division 7 – Wednesday’s wild card
Northview at Public Safety Academy
Friday’s first round
WC winner at Southlands Academy

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Boys Basketball: Damien, Los Altos, Bonita and others learn playoff opponents

LINKS: Boys Basketball pairings

By Fred Robledo
There were no big surprises following the release of the CIF Southern Section boys basketball pairings on Sunday, just a lot of playoff matchups to dissect now that the road to the championships are clear.One year after Damien advanced to the quarterfinals of the CIF Southern Section Open Division playoffs, the Spartans are hoping that a difficult schedule has prepared them for a deeper run in 2017.But the Spartans’ road could come with an extremely difficult second-rounder should it survive the opener.
Damien (24-3), whose only losses were to Chino Hills (twice) and Mater Dei, the second and third seeds respectively, will host Corona Centennial (23-6), a second-place team from the Big VIII, in the first round on Friday. The winner will likely take on top-seed Sierra Canyon (25-1) in the second round.
Essentially, Damien was given an eighth seed.
“I was confident we would be seeded either five or eight,” Damien coach Mike LeDuc said. “We couldn’t be six or seven because Chino Hills earned the second seed so we couldn’t be on that side of the bracket. The committee obviously felt Santa Margarita (20-6, fifth seed) was above us.
“But really, I feel like all 16 teams are great. Whoever you play is a ridiculously tough challenge, just step up and do the best you possibly can. If you win, you have to play one of those big four teams in the second round so don’t worry about it, just play.”
In any case, Damien is guaranteed at least two games in the divisional playoffs because of a consolation bracket in the Open Division, and it also is an automatic qualifier for the state playoffs in March.
One of the most intriguing local divisions for area fans is Division 1A, where Los Altos and super sophomore Jarod Lucas are hoping the chances of hanging a first banner are real.
Los Altos (20-5) earned the third-seed and will have a bye to the second round. It will play the winner between Peninsula (17-9) and Thousand Oaks (16-10) in the second round on Friday.
In Division 1A first round games Wednesday, Walnut (20-7), which finished second to Los Altos in the Hacienda, will be home against Loyola (16-9) while Palomares league champion Bonita (19-6) hosts Tesoro (16-10) .
Division 3A boasts an exciting first-round game on Wednesday with Valle Vista league champion San Dimas (19-8) hosting Hacienda at-large Charter Oak (14-10). West Covina (16-11) will be at Arroyo Grande (16-11).
Bishop Amat (20-6), which tied for second in the Camino Real, will host a first round game in Division 3AA against Mission Viejo (14-12).
Glendora and Diamond Bar were both awarded at-large berths to Division 3AA and will be on the road in the first round. Glendora (15-12) is at Ocean View (21-6) while Diamond Bar (14-13) is at Godinez (25-3).
Division 4AA appears wide open with several locals having a good chance to go deep, especially Montview League champion Workman (20-5), who will host Jurupa Valley (15-10) in the first round Wednesday.
South Hills (14-14) earned an at-large berth from the Palomares and is on the road at Westminster (13-13). If South Hills and Workman win it will meet in the second round.
Rowland (18-8) finished second to San Dimas in the Valle Vista, and will host Jurupa Hills (14-12) in the first round while Covina (17-11) travels to take on San Marino (13-13).
Rosemead (10-12) was the lone team in Division 4A and will be on the road at Salesian (12-14).
In Division 5AA, Sierra Vista (12-15) will host Arrowhead Christian (15-9) and Nogales (9-17) will make the trip up the hill to take on Big Bear (14-10) in wild card games Wednesday. Mountain View (17-10) will host Edgewood (19-6) in a the first round on Friday.

All games start at 7 p.m.
Open Division – Friday’s first round
Corona Centennial at Damien
Division 1A – Wednesday’s first round
Los Altos bye (Peninsula-Thousand Oaks winner Friday)
Loyola at Walnut
Tesoro at Bonita
Division 3AA – Wednesday’s first round
Mission Viejo at Bishop Amat
Glendora at Ocean View
Diamond Bar at Godinez
Division 3A – Wednesday’s first round
Charter Oak at San Dimas
West Covina at Arroyo Grande
Division 4AA – Wednesday’s first round
Jurupa Valley at Workman
South Hills at Westminster
Covina at San Marino
Jurupa Hills at Rowland
Division 4A – Wednesday’s first round
Rosemead at Salesian
Division 5AA – Wednesday’s wild card
Arrowhead Christian at Sierra Vista
Nogales at Big Bear
Edgewood at Mountain View (Friday’s first round)

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Girls Basketball: Glendora earns top seed in 3AA with Rowland No. 3 in 2AA

LINKS: Girls Basketball pairings

By Fred Robledo
There are several local teams with shots at chasing girls basketball divisional titles following the release of the CIF Southern Section girls basketball pairings on Sunday.
It might come as a huge surprise that Glendora and Bishop Amat, despite not winning league titles, were awarded the top two seeds respectively in Division 3AA.

Glendora (22-5), which tied for second in the Palomares League, will be on the road at Mission Valley League champion Gabrielino (16-8) in the second round on Saturday after both teams were given bye’s to the second round. Because Glendora is a second place team, it is on the road despite earning the top seed.
Second-seed Bishop Amat (18-7) finished second in the Camino Real and also was given a bye to the second round where it will await the winner between Tahquitz (15-7) and Serrano (10-6).
In other Division 3AA first round games, Diamond Ranch (13-12) is at Palos Verdes (18-9) while El Monte (10-15) is at Gahr (14-11).
Rowland, the area’s top-ranked team, was seeded third in Division 2AA after an impressive season that saw it finish 24-1.
Rowland will host the Temescal Canyon (21-5), Lakewood St. Joseph’s (17-7) winner in the second round on Saturday.
Los Altos (23-3), co-champions with Walnut in the Hacienda league, earned the fourth seed and also has a bye to the second round.
Los Altos will face the St. Monica Catholic (20-6)-Arcadia (14-12) winner in the second round.
In Division 2AA first round games on Thursday, Palomares league champion Bonita (18-8) will host Channel League at-large Dos Pueblos (19-6) while Walnut (23-3) hosts Almont third-place San Gabriel (18-7).
The best local matchup in Thursday’s first-round is in Division 2A with Covina (23-5), second to Rowland in the Valle Vista, hosting West Covina (17-10), a third-place team from the competitive Hacienda.
One year after the Duarte girls basketball team advanced to the Division 4AA championship game, the Falcons’ regular season success has continued, but now they will have to compete in Division 1A, where even a first round game is tough.
Duarte (25-4) will host Murrieta Valley (18-8) in the first round on Thursday.
Diamond Bar (20-7), which earned an at-large berth to Division 1A, will be on the road at Citrus Belt league champion Yucaipa (20-4), with the winner taking on top-seed Martin Luther King in the second round.
Sierra Vista (10-13) was the lone area participant in Division 3A and will be home in the first round on Thursday against Rancho Verde (14-12).
In Division 4AA first round games Thursday, San Dimas (10-17) is at Nipomo (15-11) while Arroyo (14-14) hosts Sherman Oaks Notre Dame (14-14).
Bassett (10-15), which finished second in the Miramonte, will be on the road in a Division 4A first-round game at Pioneer (17-11).
In Division 5AA, Workman (11-10) will host Heritage Christian (19-8) in a Wednesday’s wild card while Rosemead (16-10) hosts a first-round game Saturday against La Reina (10-11).
In 5A, La Puente (9-14) is at Riverside Prep in a wild card on Wednesday.

All games start at 7 p.m.
Division 1A – Thursday’s first round
Murrieta Valley at Duarte
Diamond Bar at Yucaipa
Division 2AA – Thursday’s first round
Rowland bye (Temescal Canyon-Lakewood St. Joe’s winner Saturday)
Los Altos bye (St. Monica Catholic-Arcadia winner Saturday)
Dos Pueblos at Bonita
San Gabriel at Walnut
Division 2A – Thursday’s first round
West Covina at Covina
Division 3AA – Thursday’s first round
Glendora bye (at Gabrielino Saturday)
Bishop Amat bye (vs. Tahquitz-Serrano winner Saturday)
Diamond Ranch at Palos Verdes
El Monte at Gahr
Division 3A – Thursday’s first round
Rancho Verde at Sierra Vista
Division 4AA – Thursday’s first round
San Dimas at Nipomo
Sherman Oaks Notre Dame at Arroyo
Division 4A – Thursday’s first round
Bassett at Pioneer
Division 5AA – Wednesday’s wild card
Heritage Christian at Workman
La Reina at Rosemead (first round Saturday)
Division 5A – Wednesday’s wild card
La Puente at Riverside Prep

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Glendora settles for 0-0 tie with Claremont to share Palomares girls soccer title

It was fitting that Glendora and Claremont’s girls soccer teams posed together for pictures following Wednesday’s 0-0 tie that resulted in a share of the Palomares League title, because both teams shared chances and opportunities that just wouldn’t fall.
For Claremont (18-4-1, 9-1), the tie had extra meaning, because the Wolfpack, ranked fourth in CIF Southern Section Division 3, will head to the playoffs as the league’s top team by virtue of beating Glendora 4-1 in its prior encounter to earn the head-to-head nod over the Tartans (17-5-1, 9-1), ranked seventh in Division 3.“It was a good game by two good teams,” Claremont coach Tim Tracey said. “We knew we were going to have our hands full with Glendora. But we also knew what leaving here with a tie meant. It’s always nice to go the playoffs as the top team.”

Glendora obviously wanted to come away with the victory, but first-year coach Steve Jimenez talked about the positives that his team can build on.
“Welcome to the Palomares league,” Jimenez explained. “Every game in this league is a battle. We wanted the league title by ourselves but at the end of the day, this is the first girls soccer title in Glendora history, so we’ll build on this and take this momentum to the playoffs.”
Claremont forced the pace early and nearly took the lead in the 30th minute on a goal that was called back on offside.
A few minutes later, forward Lexi Deahl got around Glendora goalkeeper Sarah Reyes in the 35th minute, but her open netter floated over the crossbar.
Glendora was also fortunate to escape two tackles in the box in the final moments of the half that easily could have resulted in Claremont penalty kicks.
But Glendora had its chances in the first half too, particularly on set pieces, but it couldn’t put shots on frame or get on the end of crosses and corners.
Reyes saved Glendora in the early minutes of the second half, turning away two point-blank shots from Claremont’s Mackenzie Boulware. It was a spark that allowed Glendora to regain some momentum.
“I’ve always said bigtime players come up in big games,” Jimenez said. “She made some big saves that kept the game at zero, that’s all you can ask from your (goalkeeper).”
Glendora’s two bigtime strikers, Texas Tech-bound Alexis Rushlow and Washington State signee Hanna Goff, had a few chances, but not enough.
A lot of credit goes to Wolfpack central defender Hope Hyland and her outside backs for doing their best to contain the Tartans’ duo.
“It’s always really tough playing Glendora, they have Rushlow, Goff and all these good players,” Hyland said. “It’s good we tied, but I wish we would have won.”
In the two overtimes, Claremont hit the post and Rushlow nearly broke free in the final minute to win it.

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Boys Basketball Rankings: Damien and Los Altos have been 1-2 all season

Boys Basketball Rankings
1. Damien (23-3)
— Has beaten everyone it’s supposed to beat.
2. Los Altos (20-4) — Tough schedule has prepared it for the playoffs.
3. Bonita (17-6) — Clings to one game lead in Palomares with two left.
4. Walnut (18-7) — Was swept by Los Altos in Hacienda.
5. San Dimas (17-8) — Two wins from perfect 10-0 in Valle Vista.
6. Workman (19-5) — Will it finally go on a deep playoff run?
7. Bishop Amat (18-6) — Better than expected season.
8. Rowland (16-8) — Battles Covina for second on Tuesday.
9. Charter Oak (14-10) — Tied with West Covina for third in Hacienda.
10. Glendora (14-11) — Is only 3-5 in Palomares.

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Girls Basketball Rankings: No. 1 Rowland having a dream season

Girls Basketball Rankings
1. Rowland (22-1)
— Can clinch Valle Vista outright with win over Covina.
2. Walnut (21-3) — Beats Los Altos in rematch to tie for Hacienda lead.
3. Los Altos (21-3) — Is 7-1 and tied in Hacienda with Walnut with two to play.
4. Covina (22-4) — Can share Valle Vista title by beating Rowland.
5. Glendora (21-4) — Beat Bonita 51-38 to tie for Palomares lead.
6. Duarte (23-4) — Dominated Montview, ready for the playoffs.
7. Diamond Bar (19-6) — Still fighting for a playoff spot.
8. Bishop Amat (18-7) – Clinched second in Camino Real.
9. Bonita (16-8) — Tied for Palomares lead with Glendora, both 6-2.
10. West Covina (16-10) — Bulldogs a solid third in tough Hacienda.

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