About Fred Robledo

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

Damien hangs on with 62-61 victory over Roosevelt, will face Mater Dei in Friday’s championship

Damien will face Mater Dei in final: Damien High School basketball coach Mike LeDuc started his 48-team tournament this year because he wanted to provide his team some good competition to prepare it for upcoming Baseline League games.Mission accomplished.
The Spartans advanced to the championship game of The Classic at Damien with a dramatic 62-61 win over Roosevelt on Thursday. Damien (15-0) plays Mater Dei, a 51-49 semifinal winner over Corona Centennial, Friday night at 8:30 p.m.

Watch the final 30 seconds as Damien hangs on for 62-61 victory over Eastvale Roosevelt to advance to Friday’s Gold Division championship at the Classic against either Mater Dei or Corona Centennial. Friday’s game is at 8:30 p.m.

Upper Bracket

Mater Dei 54, Lynwood 41
Birmingham 81, Oak Park 78
Corona Cetennial 70, Alemany 50
Etiwanda 66, Las Vegas Centennial 62
Bottom Bracket
Long Beach Poly 71, Rancho Christian 55
Damien 85, Moreau Catholic 64
Eastvale Roosevelt 87, Santa Monica 63
St. John Bosco 73, Crespi 41
Mater Dei 74, Birmingham 67
Corona Centennial 77, Etiwanda 63
Damien 71, Long Beach Poly 63
Eastvale Roosevelt 74, St. John Bosco 65
Mater Dei 51, Corona Centennial 49
Damien 62, Eastvale Roosevelt 61
Damien vs. Mater Dei, 8:30 p.m.

lucas4Los Altos’ undefeated season ends in Silver semifinals: In several of Los Altos High school boys basketball team’s wins this season, which included two tournament titles, the Conquerors fell behind and found a way to win and stay undefeated. But coach Jeff Lucas knew their good fortune wouldn’t last forever.
In the Silver Division semifinals of The Classic at Damien High School on Thursday, Los Altos fell behind by 11 points to CIF San Diego Section’s Vista in the third quarter and did what it usually does, rally to tie the game midway through the fourth quarter.

Upper Bracket

Taft 64, Highland 45
Claremont 67, Mission Prep 66
Leuzinger 63, Rancho Verde 42
Dominguez 49, Price 47
Bottom Bracket
Windward 71, Knight 70
San Diego Vista 82, Colony 69
Rancho Cucamonga 63, St. Bernard 56
Los Altos 69, Long Beach Jordan 57
Taft 61, Claremont 54
Dominguez 79, Leuzinger 63
San Diego Vista 64, Windward 58
Los Altos 77, Rancho Cucamonga 76
Taft 72, Dominguez 69
San Diego Vista 77, Los Altos 69
Taft vs. Dominguez, 5:30 p.m.
Los Altos vs. Dominguez, third place, 8 p.m.

Upper Bracket

La Canada 72, Rialto 49
Kaiser 67, Trinity Classical 29
Diamond Bar 56, Victor Valley 42
San Dimas 68, Pomona 34
Bottom Bracket

La Salle 63, Arizona Verrado 43
West Covina 64, Silerado 59
La Sierra def. Alta Loma
Hesperia 63, El Rancho 27
La Canada 57, Kaiser 47
Diamond Bar 56, San Dimas 54
La Salle 89, West Covina 86
Hesperia 43, La Sierra 36
La Canada 61, Diamond Bar 59
Hesperia 62, La Salle 49
La Canada vs. Hesperia, 4 p.m.

Three knock-out style tournaments headlines THE CLASSIC at Damien High next week, a Gold Division featuring the best of the best, along with Silver and Bronze Divisions that feature some of the area’s best teams, and solid teams from all over Southern California. Will update scores and schedule each morning.
Damien advances to Gold semifinals: The Damien High School boys basketball team had its first big matchup of an anticipated many this season on Tuesday evening.
It was a match in more ways than one, too. Long Beach Poly is ranked higher than the Spartans in the CIF Southern Section poll. The Jackrabbits also had a big size advantage.

La Salle beats West Covina in Bronze quarters: Size was the strength for the La Salle High School boys basketball team as it wore down, then held off a tenacious West Covina squad, 89-86, in the quarterfinals of the Bronze Division of The Classic at Damien on Tuesday night.
The Lancers (7-3) will play the winner of the La Sierra/Hesperia game in the semifinals on Thursday at 6 p.m.
“It came down to the end,” said West Covina head coach Damien Tate. “But I think the factor was (La Salle’s) size that got us.”

Monday’s Games
Los Altos opens with Silver Division win:
A slow start gave way to a fast finish for the Los Altos High School boys basketball team.The Conquerors trailed by 10 points at halftime before storming back in the second half to defeat Long Beach Jordan, 69-57, in the first round of the Silver Division of the Classic at Damien tournament.
Los Altos (9-0) will play the winner of the St. Bernard-Rancho Cucamonga game in the quarterfinals at 8 p.m. on Tuesday.
“Our defense picked up (after halftime),” Los Altos head coach Jeff Lucas said. “It helped they missed some shots too but we were harping defense at halftime and that made the difference in the second half.”

San Dimas 68, Pomona 34 — Donnell Leffridge scored 15 points and Spencer Bandow added 11 points and had four rebounds for the Saints (8-3) in a Damien Tournament bronze division first-round victory. Also for San Dimas, Elijah Jackson had six assists and Russell Ocampo had five assists. Ivan Richmond had eight points for Pomona. San Dimas will host Diamond Bar today at 4:30 p.m.

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Chino Hills and host Glendora will square off in Friday’s girl basketball title game

Final Four is set: The Covina High School girls basketball team overcame a slow start with a strong push in the second quarter to defeat La Serna 62-35 in pool play action of the Glendora tournament on Wednesday night. With the win, Covina advances to the semifinals Thursday night against Chino Hills.
“This is our third tournament this season and the third time reaching the semifinals,” Covina coach Nick Masi said. “I’m excited. The whole team is. The toughest part will be the fourth game in four days.”

Glendora Girls Basketball After Christmas Tournament
Pool A: Glendora, Westminster La Quinta, Temple City, Montclair
Pool B: Covina, Monrovia, West Covina, La Serna
Pool C: Charter Oak, Moreno Valley, Chino Hills, Lancaster
Pool D: Yucaipa, La Salle, Chino, La Quinta
Monday’s round robin
Temple City 49, Montclair 32
La Salle 49, Yucaipa 32
Chino Hills 58, Lancaster 29
Glendora 74, Westminster La Quinta 11
Chino 50, La Quinta 33
Charter Oak 38, Moreno Valley 37
Covina 66, Monrovia 28
West Covina 56, La Serna 37
Tuesday’s round robin
Chino Hills 44, Charter Oak 19
La Salle 42, La Quinta 23
Lancaster 62, Moreno Valley 30
Glendora 68, Temple City 29
Westminster La Quinta 36, vs. Montclair 32
Covina 57, West Covina 47
La Serna 53, Monrovia 42
Yucaipa 70, Chino 35
Wednesday’s round robin
West Covina 58, Monrovia 32
Temple City 34, Westminster La Quinta 22
Chino Hills 60, Moreno Valley 7
Lancaster 63, Charter Oak 31
Yucaipa 61, La Quinta 38
La Salle 60, Chino 39
Glendora 73, Montclair 37
Covina 62, La Serna 35
Thursday’s semifinals
Glendora 64, La Salle 41
Chino Hills 36, Covina 35
Friday’s championship
Glendora vs. Chino Hills, 7:30 p.m.

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St. Francis wins Nogales boys basketball title with 85-79 win over La Serna

St. Francis wins the title: The third time proved to be the charm for the St. Francis High School basketball team.
Joey Walsh scored 31 points and Malakhi Jensen had 16 as the Golden Knights won their first tournament in three tries this month with an 85-70 victory over La Serna to take the Nogales tournament title at Nogales High.
Sean Stephen had 10 points and Lucas Shin and Omari Moore had nine each for St. Francis, which improved to 9-3.

Nogales Boys Basketball After Christmas Tournament
Pool A: Bassett, Nogales, Montebello, St. Francis
Pool B: Don Lugo, Yucaipa, La Serna, Norco
Monday’s round-robin
Yucaipa 50, Norco 49
La Serna 63, Don Lugo 37
St. Francis 74, Montebello 46
Bassett 68, Nogales 55
Tuesday’s round-robin
La Serna 68, Norco 64
Yucaipa 79, Don Lugo 66
St. Francis 117, Bassett 50
Montebello 46, Nogales 42
Wedneseday’s round-robin
Montebello def. Bassett
La Serna 51, Yucaipa 42
Norco 72, Don Lugo 49
St. Francis 79, Nogales 45
Thursday’s championship
St. Francis 85, La Serna 70

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Whittier beats Charter Oak 78-63 to capture the Wilson boys basketball tourney title

Charter Oak falls in final: Whittier High School boys basketball coach Chris Dalley said he and his team sat on the bench reflecting on what could have been.
The Cardinals handled tough Charter Oak 78-63 in the Wilson tournament championship game on Thursday night. But Dalley said he and his team thought about how they could’ve won two tournament championships this season.He was referring to a 55-51 heartbreaking loss to San Dimas earlier this month in the Glendora Winter Shootout championship. Dalley said the win over Charter Oak was redemption.
“This was a confidence-builder heading into league play,” Dalley said. “We talked about winning a championship and knowing what it would be like heading into league play.”

Wilson’s Boys Basketball Battle For the Ball Christmas Tournament
Pool A: Whittier, La Habra, Bell Gardens, Wilson
Pool B: Perris, Rowland, Charter Oak, Dymally
Monday’s round robin
Rowland 51, Perris 47
Charter Oak 74, Dymally 14
Whittier 63, La Habra 55
Bell Gardens 55, Wilson 50
Tuesday’s round robin
Rowland 84, Dymally 40
Charter Oak 70, Perris 31
La Habra 72, Bell Gardens 25
Whittier 83, Wilson 72
Wednesday’s round robin
Perris 74, Dymally 23
Charter Oak 64, Rowland 61, OT
Whittier 75, Bell Gardens 49
La Habra 79, Wilson 56
Thursday’s championship
Whittier 78, Charter Oak 63

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Glendora’s Marissa Montoya headlines Tribune Girls Volleyball All-Area Team

By Keith Lair
Tribune Girls Volleyball Player of the Year
Marissa Montoya
Outside hitter, senior, Glendora

montoyaIt is every high school athlete’s dream that in the final year of school to win nearly every match and make a long run in postseason play.
Marissa Montoya accomplished that dream, and more, in the 2016 volleyball campaign. She helped Glendora High School to a co-Palomares League title and helped get the Tartans to the CIF Southern Section Division 3 championship match.

It is the furthest the Tartans have advanced in postseason play.
“We worked really hard this year,” Montoya said after a quarterfinal sweep of Bishop Montgomery. “This was our goal and we finally made it. Getting to the finals would be a dream come true.”
Glendora defeated host Foothill of Santa Ana in the semifinals to get to that dream and Montoya added to it by earning San Gabriel Valley Tribune Player of the Year honors.
In the division final, Glendora won the first set against St. Joseph of Lakewood, but the Jesters came back to win the title in four sets.
“We kind of put our heels back,” the outside hitter said of those final three sets. “We thought maybe it would be easier on us. They definitely pushed through. They were just at a fast tempo and that definitely was a problem.”
Montoya led the Tartans in kills in the match.
But the season was not over. Glendora earned a berth in the CIF State Division II playoffs, eventually losing in the Southern California semifinals to state champion Cathedral Catholic of San Diego in four games.
Montoya was one of the three Tartans’ go-to girls, which created havoc for defenses. She finished in the top 25 in the CIF-SS in kills with 381. She had a .246 hitting percentage.
She never left the court either, and was just as impressive in the back row. She had 449 digs, which was among the top 20 in the CIF-SS. She also had 52 aces.

Coach of the year
Clara Lowden, Glendora

claralowdenThe Glendora High School girls volleyball team never could seemingly get over that final hump.
Coach Clara Lowden finally helped the Tartans accomplish the feat. After two consecutive years of elimination in the CIF-SS quarterfinals, Glendora made it past the quarters. Way past. The Tartans played for their first CIF-SS title in program history and made their first CIF State appearance, reaching the Southern California semifinals.
Lowden earns San Gabriel Valley Tribune Coach of the Year honors for the feat.
She took over the team four years ago and in the last three years Glendora has won the Palomares League each year, tying for the title this season. Glendora has had at least 20 victories in each of those seasons.

First team
Giselle Alarcon
Middle blocker, Senior, El Monte

alarconAlarcon tried to help the Lions overcome Gabrielino for the Mission Valley League title; their lone two league defeats. She had a team-high 122 kills and a team-high 18 blocks. “Our season was spectacular,” she said. That included a playoff victory over Whittier.

Kaitlyn Iwamoto
Libero, Senior, Los Altos

iwamotoThe senior helped the Conquerors win their fifth consecutive Hacienda League title with her stellar defense. Los Altos went 10-0 in league play. The Conquerors had a top defensive backcourt and it was Iwamoto leading the way. She had 374 digs, more than twice as many than any of her teammates and she successfully handled 308 serve/receive opportunities, nearly three times more than any other teammate.

Alexis Lowden
Outside hitter, Junior, Glendora

alexislowdenLowden may have been the Tartans’ most versatile player and biggest option. She was one of Glendora’s top hitters, but she was just as adept at the backrow with big defensive plays while still contributing to the offense. She consistently had backrow kill attempts that forced defenses to scramble.

Sahara Martinez
Setter, Senior, Bonita

martinezThe Bearcats’ run to the CIF-SS Division 4 quarterfinals was squarely put in Martinez’s passes. The senior had nearly 2,000 assists, teammates combined for only 28 more assists. She had only 10 ballhanding errors on the season. She also had 36 aces, 17 blocks, 60 kills and 261 digs, second-most on the Bearcats. She will play at UTEP next season.

Lisette Ramos
Middle hitter, Junior, Gladstone

ramosRamos has helped the Gladiators to the best of times. Gladstone won its second consecutive Montview League title and was the top seed entering the CIF-SS Division 8 tournament. But Gladstone was knocked out in the quarterfinals. ”I think the pressure got to us,” Ramos said. “But we were really prepared as a team.” She led the Gladiators with 287 kills and 32 blocks. She also served 57 aces.

Kaylee Sadler
Outside hitter, Senior, Northview

sadlerThe Vikings won their second consecutive Valle Vista League title and Sadler has been the key component each time. She was the league MVP on a team that went 21-9, but was upset in the first round of the CIF-SS playoffs. “It was painful, definitely painful,” she said.

Emma Svagdis
Outside hitter, Senior, Glendora

svagdisSvagdis made defenses think twice. Defenders could not just concentrate on Marissa Montoya. They had to content with Svagdis, too. It made the Tartans a dangerous offensive team, enough to get to the CIF-SS championship match for the first time. She will play at Azusa Pacific next season.

Second team
Rachel Demerjian, setter, junior, Glendora
Julia Hooper, libero, senior, Northview
Carrie McGlohon, opposite, senior, Bonita
Anadina Morales, outside hitter, senior, Duarte
Kellie Pichotta, outside hitter, senior, Bonita
Jocelyn Portillo, outside hitter, junior, Duarte
Celina Vargas, outside hitter, senior, Gladstone

Honorable mention
Kassandra Aguilera, middle blocker/outside hitter, senior, Bassett
Jenna Bailey, setter, senior, St. Lucy’s
Patti Delgadillo, outside hitter/middle blocker, senior, Los Altos
Selena Jara, setter/opposite, senior, Gladstone
Cassidy Marshman, libero, senior, Glendora
Brennan Miller, libero, senior, St. Lucy’s
Johanna Rodriguez, setter, senior, Edgewood

Continue reading

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SGV All-Star football game Jan. 27; La Canada’s Beasley nominated to play

By Aram Tolegian
High school football season isn’t over quite yet.The top players in the local area and its surrounding parts will get a chance to showcase their talent one last time in the SGV East/West All-Star Classic on Jan. 27 at West Covina High. Game organizer and West Covina football head coach Mike Maggiore announced over the weekend that Montebello’s Pete Gonzalez will coach the West team while Diamond Ranch’s Eric Martinez will coach the East.
“We’re excited because both guys have a lot of connections in their areas and they have a lot of contacts,” Maggiore said. “I think they’re going to get out the best players in the area. Both guys run wide-open offenses and know what they’re doing.”
Gonzalez guided Montebello to a 11-2 record and the Almont League championship. The Oilers were also semifinalists in Division 11. Martinez, the second-year coach at Diamond Ranch, led the Panthers to the playoffs for the second consecutive season. Continue reading

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Damien beats Bonita to take La Canada boys tournament title

Saturday’s championship
Damien rallies to beat Bonita: Domination might be the best word to describe the performance of the Damien High School boys basketball team going into the La Canada Tournament championship. The Spartans won their first three games in the tournament by an average of 40 points.Bonita came into the title game wanting to show it could hang with its neighbor in La Verne. The Bearcats did just that but Damien proved to be too much for Bonita as it won the tournament championship with a 75-59 victory on Saturday night.
“Bonita is really good,” said Damien head coach Mike LeDuc. “They did a great job of setting the tempo in the first quarter. We had a hard time getting started but fortunately in the second quarter we got our tempo started.”


damien4Damien advances to finals: The battle for boys basketball supremacy in La Verne will take place about 30 miles west right off the 210 Freeway. Damien High will face Bonita Saturday night in the La Cañada Tournament championship.
The Spartans defeated St. Francis 83-59 in pool play on Friday night to advance to the championship. Bonita punched its ticket to the title game thanks to a 68-60 victory over Glendale.
Damien (9-0) continued its dominance this season with its win over the Golden Knights. The Spartans have won each of their games by at least 17 points. Damien won all three of its pool-play games in the tournament by an average of 40 points. It defeated Arcadia 89-45 and Marina 90-38 earlier in the week.

Bonita nets big win Thursday: A huge fourth-quarter scoring burst lifted the Bonita High School boys basketball team over La Canada 82-74 in pool-play action of the La Canada Tournament on Thursday night.
The Bearcats found themselves down 55-50 early in the final quarter of the mostly back-and-forth game before scoring 32 points in the quarter.
“I thought our kids played fantastic,” said Bonita head coach Tim Godley. “I thought they weathered several storms. When they got down they didn’t fade. They continued to get after it.”

Damien 90, Marina 39 — Justin Hemsley scored 25 points and had 10 rebounds, Cameron Shelton had 23 points, five assists and five steals and Ezekiel Alley added 14 points and had five assists for the Spartans in a La Canada Tournament win. Damien will play against St. Francis in a semifinal game today.

La Canada Boys Basketball Holiday Classic
Pool A: La Canada, Bonita, Glendale, Hollywood
Pool B: Arcadia, Damien, St. Francis, Marina

Monday’s round robin
La Canada 82, Hollywood 30
Tuesday’s round robin
St. Francis 70, Marina 29
Damien 89, Arcadia 45
Bonita 62, Hollywood 44
La Canada 48, Glendale 43
Thursday’s round robin
St. Francis 69, Arcadia 64
Glendale 51, Hollywood 41
Damien 90, Marina 39
Bonita 82, La Canada 74
Friday’s round robin
Bonita 68, Glendale 60
Arcadia 54, Marina 44
Damien 83, St. Francis 59
Saturday’s champioship
Damien vs. Bonita, 7:30 p.m.

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