Above: A prayer and moment of silence by Charter Oak and Los Altos football teams along with the families of recently deceased students George Steward and Sabrina Castillo, 2014 graduates of Los Altos, before a prep football game at Los Altos High School in Hacienda Heights, Calif., Friday, Oct. 23, 2015. (Photo by Libby Cline / SGV Tribune)
TRIBUNE SUPER 32 FOOTBALL RANKINGS
1. Bishop Amat (7-2) — Amat is on its bye week, however, if Loyola beats Notre Dame this week, Amat will be guaranteed a playoff spot and will play Loyola in Week 10 for sole possession of second. 2. Charter Oak (7-1) — Should guarantee at least a tie for the Hacienda with a win against Walnut. But Week 10 could get interesting if West Covina beats Los Altos. 3. Glendora (7-1) – Tartans game at Claremont would clinch the Palomares title, and the Tartans would likely finish undefeated in league with Diamond Bar in Week 10. 4. Northview (7-1) –While the Vikes have an easy game with Nogales, it will be paying attention to Covina-San Dimas. A Covina win sets up a championship game against the Colts in Week 10. 5. Bonita (6-2) — ‘Cats control their own destiny. If they beat Diamond Bar and Ayala in the finale, the Cats are in the playoffs. It’s that simple. 6. Diamond Ranch (6-2) — Panthers can clinch a playoff spot with a win over Chino. 7. West Covina (4-4) –– Bulldogs still control their own destiny, but to win the Hacienda it needs to finish with wins over Los Altos and Charter Oak. 8. Pomona (6-2) — Time for the Red Devils to get out of the Miramonte, which they absolutely own. 9. Damien (4-4) — Spartans have played well of late in a tough league. The problem is, even if they beat Chino Hills this week, they’re still a longshot to make the playoffs. 10. San Dimas (5-3) — There are only two big games in the Valle Vista. The Saints lost the first one to Northview. How will it handle the second against Covina? The Rest: 11. Los Altos (4-4), 12. Covina (6-2); 13. Arroyo (7-2); 14. Baldwin Park (5-3); 15. Diamond Bar (4-4); 16. Bassett (6-2); 17. South Hills (2-6), 18. Ganesha (5-3), 19. Rosemead (4-4); 20. Mountain View (4-4), 21. South El Monte (2-6), 22. El Monte (4-5), 23. Sierra Vista (4-4), 24. Walnut (1-7), 25. Nogales (3-5), 26. Azusa (2-7); 27. Workman (2-6), 27. La Puente (3-5), 29. Rowland (1-7); 30. Gladstone (3-5); 31. Wilson (2-6). 32. Duarte (0-8).
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By Aram Tolegian
Not much has gone according to plan for the West Covina High School football team this season.
The Bulldogs haven’t had their two best offensive weapons for the entire season and have had other injury issues that have led to a 4-4 record.
But as the season winds down, West Covina finds itself still very much in the hunt for the Hacienda League championship. But a repeat league championship and even a playoff berth will become a tall task if the Bulldogs can’t get past Los Altos on Friday.
“We want to get to the point where next week (against Charter Oak) would be a league championship game,” West Covina head coach Mike Maggiore said. “It’s just a huge week and it’s the same for Los Altos. They want to get to the playoffs. We want to get to the playoffs.”
West Covina can thank last week’s 21-7 win over Chino for opening a whole range of possibilities. The Bulldogs are 2-1 in league, which puts them tied for second place with Diamond Ranch, which beat West Covina earlier this season. Charter Oak is in first at 3-0.
There’s numerous scenarios that could play out over the next two weeks that could really shuffle the standings. The best thing for West Covina to do is simply win out and let the rest take care of itself.
It’s only fitting the Bulldogs are in such a dramatic situation given the way things have gone this season. Standout Isaiah Love, who was expected to do big things on both offense and defense, hasn’t played this season due to a broken bone in his neck suffered in an offseason car accident.
There’s still a chance that Love may return at some point. That’s not the case for top running back Henry Martinez, a 1,000-yard rusher from a year ago, who suffered a season-ending knee injury in the first game.
“Without Henry and Isaiah, we’ve had to pull together and some other guys have had to step up,” Maggiore said. “Those guys were our two best players coming back and to lose them was not what we expected. It seems like they’re starting to do that, so hopefully we can keep going.”
Last season, Charter Oak and West Covina were co-champions. The Chargers won the head-to-head meeting and went into the playoffs as the No. 1 team. Los Altos finished in third place and advanced the furthest of all by reaching the Central Division championship game.
Aram Tolegian Last week: 35-5; Season: 274-75
Fred Robledo Last week: 35-5; Season: 275-74 Last week: With two-weeks left I maintained by one-game lead. We both went 35-5 this past week, both missing St. Paul’s upset over Salesian, Gabrielino’s win over Mountain View and Burbank’s win over Arcadia. I called an upset taking St. Francis over Cathedral, but Aram got me back taking Harvard-Westlake over La Salle.
This week’s games and predictions
All games start at 7 p.m., unless noted
Del Rio League
Whittier vs. California at Pioneer — Robledo (Cal); Aram (Cal) Pacific League
Pasadena vs. Burbank at Burroughs — Robledo (Burbank); Aram (Burb) Rio Hondo League
Blair vs. Temple City at Muir — Robledo (TCity); Aram (TC)
Alhambra vs. Schurr at Montebello — Robledo (Schurr); Aram (Schurr)
Montebello at Bell Gardens — Robledo (Montbello); Aram (Montebello)
San Gabriel at Keppel — Robledo (SG); Aram (SG) Angelus League
Cathedral at Harvard-Westlake — Robledo (Cathedral); Aram (Cath)
Salesian at La Salle — Robledo (Salesian); Aram (Sal)
St. Paul at St. Francis — Robledo (St. Francis); Aram (SF) Baseline League
Damien at Chino Hills — Robledo (CHills); Aram (CH) Del Rio League
Pioneer at El Rancho — Robledo — Robledo (El Rancho); Aram (Pioneer)
Santa Fe vs. La Serna at Pioneer Freeway League
Fullerton vs. Sonora at La Habra — Robledo (Sonora); Aram (Son)
Sunny Hills vs. La Habra at Buena Park HS — Robledo (La Habra); Aram (LH) Hacienda League
Charter Oak at Walnut — Robledo (COak); Aram (CO)
Diamond Ranch at Chino — Robledo (DRanch); Aram (DR)
West Covina at Los Altos — Robledo (Los Altos); Aram (LA) Miramonte League
La Puente at Ganesha — Robledo (Ganesha); Aram (Ganesa)
Pomona at Bassett — Robledo (Pomona); Aram (Pomona) Mission Valley League
Gabrielino at Arroyo — Robledo (Arroyo); Aram (Arroyo)
Marshall at Rosemead — Robledo (Rosemead); Aram (Rosemead)
Mountain View at South El Monte — Robledo (South); Aram (SEM) Montview League
Azusa vs. Gladstone at Citrus College — Robledo (Azusa); Aram (Gstone)
Sierra Vista at Duarte — Robledo (Duarte); Aram (SV)
Workman at Baldwin Park — Robledo (BPark); Aram (BP) Olympic League
Maranatha at Cerritos Valley Christian — Robledo (VC); Aram (VC) Pacific League
Glendale at Muir — Robledo (Muir); Aram (Muir)
Hoover vs. Arcadia at Glendale — Robledo (Arcadia); Aram (Arc) Palomares League
Bonita at Diamond Bar — Robledo (Bonita); Aram (Bonita)
Glendora at Claremont — Robledo (Glendora); Aram (G-High)
South Hills at Ayala — Robledo (Ayala); Aram (Ayala) Prep League
Firebaugh vs. Pasadena Poly — Robledo (PPoly); Aram (Poly)
Flintridge Prep at Rio Hondo Prep — Robledo (RHPrep); Aram (RHP) Rio Hondo League
La Canada at San Marino — Robledo (San Marino); Aram (SM)
South Pasadena at Monrovia — Robledo (Monrovia); Aram (SP) Santa Fe League
Bosco Tech vs. Mary Star of the Sea – Robledo (Mary Star); Aram (Mary Star) Suburban League
Mayfair at La Mirada — Robledo (La Mirada); Aram (LM) Valle Vista League
Covina vs. San Dimas at CDF — Robledo (Covina); Aram (SD)
Northview at Nogales — Robledo (Northview); Aram (Nview)
Rowland at Wilson — Robledo (Rowland); Aram (Rowland)
Friday’s results Baseline League
Damien 44, Etiwanda 20 Hacienda League
Charter Oak 49, Los Altos 35
West Covina 21, Chino 7
Diamond Ranch 44, Walnut 0 Miramonte League
Pomona 2, Garey 0, forfeit Mission League
Bishop Amat 30, Chaminade 22 Mission Valley League
Gabrielino 41, Mountain View 38
Rosemead 41, El Monte 34, final Montview League
Baldwin Park 34, Gladstone 6
Sierra Vista 28, Workman 27 Palomares League
Claremont 42, Diamond Bar 13 Valle Vista League
Covina 42, Rowland 14
San Dimas 55, Nogales 14
Northview 42, Wilson 0
Thursday’s results Palomares League Glendora 39, Ayala 14
Bonita 27, South Hills 7 Miramonte League
Bassett 48, La Puente 6 Mission Valley League
South El Monte 39, Marshall 6 Montview League Azusa 28, Duarte 26
Bonita gets first Palomares victory: Playing like its playoff life depended on it, Bonita came from behind to beat defending Palomares League champion South Hills 27-7 on Thursday night.
It was the first league win for the Bearcats (6-2,1-2) and it moved them into a third place tie with two games left to play in the regular season.
“We really needed this win,” Bearcats coach Adrain Medrano said. “Our backs were against the wall. We really needed to run the ball tonight and we did a reasonable job of that but we really played well on defense.”
The Huskies (2-6, 1-2) scored first, marching 90 yards in 10 plays after forcing a turnover deep in their own territory. Andrew Segura capped the drive with a four yard run early in the second quarter. Segura carried the ball 25 times for 111 yards to lead the Huskies.
The Bearcats came right back to tie the score on an 18-yard run by Romeo Guttierrez. Taylor Trujillo threw the block that sprang Guttierez loose for the score with 6:34 left in the first half.
Two plays and 36 seconds later Dylan Flores intercepted a Huskies pass and took it 30 yards for the score the put the Bearcats ahead to stay.
“That pick six changed the momentum,” Huskies coach Albert Rodriguez said. “They picked us twice and we failed to convert three fourth down plays, that’s five turnovers and you can’t do that against a quality team like Bonita.”
Tanner East completed 16 of 26 passes for 185 yards and one touchdown, to Darien Darien Gamell, to lead the Bearcats.
He completed three passes to Logan Zylstra for 86 yards. Zylstra also intercepted an attempted screen pass to shut down any chance the Huskies might have had.
“Logan made a couple of big plays,” Medrano said. “He’s been a big play guy for us all season on both sides of the ball. Dylan Flores had a couple of big plays and we had a couple of guys step up for us in the offensive line.”
By Aram Tolegian
It was around this time last year that the Los Altos High School football team handed Charter Oak its worst loss of the season.
Very few people saw it coming. Sure, the Conquerors were huge up front and had a formidable running back to take advantage of it. But 29-7?
“They were a very good football team, just look at where they went,” Charter Oak head coach Lou Farrar said of Los Altos, which ultimately wound up playing in the Central Division championship game. “That just tells you how good they were. They had some outstanding kids up front and a very good running back. That’s the kind of football team they were last year and we weren’t. We’re still not.
“Our league right now, they’re all physical teams. There’s a big emphasis on power football.”
Charter Oak is once again a prohibitive favorite to beat its longtime rival. The Chargers are 6-1 overall and 2-0 in the Hacienda League. They’re also ranked No. 1 in the Central Division. Los Altos is 4-3 overall and 1-1 in league. Kickoff is 7 p.m. at Los Altos High.
The Conquerors still have considerable size up front, but it’s not was cohesive as it was last year. Running back Tyler Nevens is also still around and capable of taking over games. Charter Oak’s defense has gotten downright stingy, though, during its five-game win streak. The Chargers are allowing just 11 points per game.
Charter Oak has spanked Chino and Diamond Ranch to start league play. Conversely, Chino just beat Los Altos in overtime last week.
“A lot of the kids that are doing well right now were juniors last year at this time,” Farrar said. “Now that they’re seniors, they’ve learned from previous outings and they know what they have to do. There’s no substitute for experience.” The game has special meaning for Los Altos, which will honor former player George Steward, who passed away on Sunday in a car accident in Hacienda Heights. Steward played on last year’s team and was currently on the team at Mt. San Antonio College.
ARROYO AND ROSEMEAD FOR MVL TITLE?
It’s looking like the Mission Valley League championship will come down to, who else, Arroyo (6-2, 4-0) and Rosemead (3-4, 3-0).
The Knights are Panthers are scheduled to play at Rosemead High in Week 10. Given the way the league standings are trending, that game will be for the league championship. But the good news is that the loser will likely have a playoff spot locked up.
El Monte’s loss to South El Monte has opened the door for Arroyo and Rosemead to pull away from the pack, assuming Rosemead can beat the Lions on Friday. Rosemead is the defending league champion.