Boys Basketball: Workman rallies past rival La Puente to earn Montview League 3-peat

By Stephen Ramirez
@SteveRRamirez on Twitter
When ever the Workman High School boys basketball team has needed a big play, this season it’s looked to guard J.P. Rodriguez.
The senior came through again on Wednesday.
Rodriguez nailed a 3-pointer with 18 seconds left in regulation to force overtime, than scored seven points in the extra period to help host Workman to a piece of its third consecutive Montview League title with a 61-55 victory over rival La Puente.
The senior had 26 points and Alan Matron and Joshua Paul Rodriguez had 13 each for the Lobos, who improved to 19-6 and 12-1 in league play. It’s also Workman’s fifth title in the past six seasons. La Puente, getting 15 points from Matthew Arguello and 13 and 11, respectivley, from Edvin Peraza and Enrique Ramirez, slipped to 13-11 and 10-3.
La Puente looked like it might get its own piece of the crown late in the fourth quarter after Ramirez buried a 3-pointer from the side for a 46-45 lead at 1:17 and Anthony Burchett made a layup for a 48-45 lead with 35 seconds left. But it was more than enough time for J.P. Rodriguez to respond.
The senior took a pass from James Magaway and nailed a 3-pointer from the corner to tie it at 48. La Puente had a chance for the win, but Peraza’s desperation 3-pointer was long at the buzzer.
Workman assumed control from the start of overtime. Joshua Paul Rodriguez made a layup for the lead at 3:01 and J.P. Rodriguez pushed it to 53-48 with a 3-pointer at 2:19. Matron followed with a 3-footer in the lane for a 55-49 lead, but La Puente countered with a 3-pointer by Peraza to pull within 55-52 with 1:08.
J.P. Rodriguez then made four free throws down the stretch to push it to 61-55 in the final minute.

Workman coach Martin Flores: “J.P.’s been our MVP all year and he made big shots. It’s been a challenging season for us, but we’re really proud that we did a 3-peat and our fifth title in the past six years, because this year for us was going to be a rebuiding year. I really proud of the boys and what they accomplished. They did what they needed to to do.”
La Puente coach Jason Aceves: “We took the lead on that 3-pointer by Kiki (Ramirez). We thought we could ride it out. We had done a good job denying the ball from their best shooter (Rodriguez), but he got open. You go from an extreme high to an extreme low. But it was a good shot. He was wide open and he hit it.”
J.P. Rodriguez: “James (Magaway) gave me a good pass. I was wide open, so I shot it.”

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Sierra League Soccer: Damien boys clinch Sierra; South Hills girls beat St. Lucy’s in overtime, 3-2

Damien 5, South Hills 0
Claremont 2, Chino Hills 0
Charter Oak 2, Ayala 0
Standings: Damien 7-0-2; Claremont 5-0-4; Chino Hills 4-4-1; South Hills 2-5-2; Ayala 1-5-3; Charter Oak 1-6-2

South Hills 3, St. Lucy’s 2, overtime
Chino Hills 4, Claremont 0
Ayala 3, Charter Oak 0
Standings: Chino Hills 9-1; South Hills 5-3-1; Claremont 5-4; Ayala 5-4; St. Lucy’s 2-6-1; Charter Oak 1-8

The Inland Insider Tom Kiss was at Claremont’s 2-0 boys soccer victory over Chino Hills. Watch the highlights and post-game interviews.

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Baldwin Park’s Danny Vega scores twice to lead Braves over Northview 2-0; Vikings question call that would have tied it 1-1 in final minutes

Below: Baldwin Park’s Danny Vega, the Valley’s leading scorer with 31 goals, scores twice in 2-0 win over Northview.

IS THIS A FOUL? Northview’s Robert Munoz appeared to tie the score in the 75th minute, but a mystery call denied it. You be the judge. “It was a pretty tough call,” said second-year Northview coach Miguel Chavez. “You can never rely on refs, you get good refs and bad refs, but it doesn’t matter. I always tell the boys to never rely on the refs, it was just an unfortunate day for us. We were playing with heart, playing well, it was back and forth and there was really no threat from either team except for the free kicks.”

GOAL SCORER: Baldwin Park’s Danny Vega scores his area leading 30th and 31st goals of the season. Check out his free kick in the 75th minute that gave the Braves a 1-0 lead.

Interviews from Northview coach Miguel Chavez, Baldwin Park forward Danny Vega and Baldwin Park coach Ricardo Mira.

By Fred J. Robledo
COVINA – Northview did all it could to deny the East San Gabriel Valley’s leading scorer, shadowing Baldwin Park striker Danny Vega and limiting his opportunities in the final third.
But Northview was helpless against Vega on two second-half free-kicks at the top of the penalty area, watching the senior bury both in the 60th and 78th minutes to lead the Braves to a 2-0 victory to clinch at least of share of the Valle Vista League title, which they can win outright with a victory over Wilson in the league finale on Thursday.
Vega picked his spot on both shots, darting one to the left corner and the other to the right to raise his area-leading goal-scoring total to 31.

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Soccer Polls: Sierra Vista boys No. 1 and still undefeated; Bishop Amat girls return to top spot


1. Sierra Vista (18-0-2) — Second in Division 4 behind nationally ranked Cathedral.
2. Damien (12-3-4) – Needs win or tie in final two to clinch the Sierra League title.
3. Diamond Bar (15-7-1) — Closing in on Hacienda League title.
4. Arroyo (10-3-4) – Back in first in MVL thanks to Mountain Views win over El Monte.
5. Northview (14-3-2) — Gets Baldwin Park rematch today for the Valle Vista League title.
6. Baldwin Park (14-4-2) – Needs to sweep Northview to claim Valle Vista
7. El Monte (11-3-0) – Back to back losses to South El Monte and Mountain View
8. Los Altos (10-5-6) — Only a game back of Diamond Bar after beating Brahmas, 2-1.
9. Bishop Amat (9-5-3) — At Cathedral, ranked fourth in the state by MaxPreps on Wednesday.
10. Duarte (13-6) — Gave Sierra Vista run for their money twice.

1. Mario Saenz, Sierra Vista, 24
2. Sebastian Ocampo, Sierra Vista, 23
3. Andre Gamboa, Diamond Bar, 21
4. Michael Flores, Sierra Vista, 15
5. Jacob Bianchessi, Damien, 12
6t. Guy Horcasitas, Diamond Bar, 11
6t. Evan Ball, Glendora, 11
6t. Federico Hurtado, Charter Oak, 11
9t. Manuel Medina, Los Altos, 10
9t. Julio Sanchez, Duarte, 10

1. Bishop Amat (17-5-3) — Doing what it always does, playing best at the end of the year and No. 3 in Division 3
2. Los Altos (16-2-3) — Defense wins Hacienda for Conqs, giving up only three goals in league.
3. South Hills (15-3-2) – Needs wins over St. Lucy’s and Ayala to guarantee playoff spot in the Sierra.
4. Sierra Vista (17-3-0) — So dominant in the Montview it outscored its opponents 81-4.
5. Diamond Bar (14-4-3) — Loses Hacienda title game to Los Altos, 1-0
6. San Dimas (14-6-0) — Saints third in Division 6 behind No. 2 Sierra Vista.
7. St. Lucy’s (8-12-2) – Regents playoff hopes fade after back-to-back losses.
8. Charter Oak (8-12-0) – Chargers aren’t this bad and will benefit from re-leaguing next season.
9. Wilson (11-9-3) – Ranked ninth in Division 6
10. Azusa (9-4-4) — Solid second in Montview behind powerful Sierra Vista

Goal Scoring Leaders
1. Jessica Lopez, Sierra Vista, 28
2. Sofia Serafin, Bishop Amat, 25
3. Daisy Duran, San Dimas, 24
4. Jaline Miranda, Azusa, 22
5. Alison Kung, Wilson, 21
6t. Hailey Zerbel, South Hills, 18
6t. Samantha Verduzco, Los Altos, 18
8. Jamie Peters, Bishop Amat, 16
9. Daisy Ruiz, Sierra Vista, 15
10. Alejandra Vargas, Sierra Vista, 14

Baseline League
Del Rey League
Hacienda League
Mission Valley League
Montview League
Sierra League
Valle Vista League

Baseline League
Del Rey League
Hacienda League
Mission Valley League
Montview League
Sierra League
Valle Vista League

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Boys Basketball: Walnut wraps up Hacienda with 64-60 win over Los Altos

By Stephen Ramirez
@SteveRRamirez on Twitter
Zuri Williams scored 16 points and Lawrence Besong had 14 and Walnut High School put the chase for the Hacienda League boys basketball championship to rest with a 64-60 victory at Los Altos on Monday night.
The Mustangs, ranked No. 1 in the area this week, won their 12th consecutive game to improve to 20-5 overall and 10-0 in league play. Albert Jelowicki also had 10 points for Walnut. Los Altos, getting 16 points from Michael Barrera and 12 points and eight rebounds from Jayson Jones, slipped to 16-8 and 5-5.
Walnut, after outscoring Los Altos, 27-14, in the third quarter, looked like it might cruise to the title. But Los Altos found it’s rhythm in the fourth quarter. The Conquerors put to together a 16-6 surge to pull within 57-56 with 2:27 remaining following consecutive 3-pointers by Barrera and a free throw by Calvin Kao.
But like it did in a 65-55 victory over the Conquerors on Jan. 22. Walnut came up big down the stretch to seal the victory. Besong scored on a drive to the basket to push it to 59-56 at 2:37 before he made one of two free throws for a 60-56 lead with 2:15 to play.
The Mustangs, who were 16 of 29 from the free throw line, made four of six free throws in the final minute to clinch it.

Walnut coach Josh Cameron: “It took us about three years to get going,” said Walnut coach Josh Cameron. Once we did, we made some good runs. We made it to the quarterfinals three years ago, but we never had a chance to win league. It means the world to me, it means the world to all these guys who were here when they were freshman and sophomores. We committed to each other that this was going to be the team that finally turns the tide. We did it. I’m very proud of these guys.”

Los Altos coach Jeff Lucas: “We made a great run. We told our team after that they put in a great effort. A effort is always nice, but it’s not the W. We gave them too many points in transition. It kind of hurts, because we feel they didn’t earn it. We gave it to them with those turnovers.”
Zuri Williams: “We were able to hit some big shots down the stretch. We played some really good defense. With their point guard (Christian Espinoza) out, it definitely helped us.”

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Basketball Rankings: Walnut boys take over top spot; Bonita girls stay No. 1

CIF-SS BOYS BASKETBALL POLLS: Damien ranked tenth in Division 1AA and not on open Division watchlist. The top 9 in 1AA are still on the list, meaning Damien will likely get a top four seed.
CIF-SS GIRLS BASKETBALL POLLS: Bonita girls ranked ninth in 1AA, but no longer on CIF Open Division watchlist. The top eight in 1AA are still on the watchlist. If all eight go, Bonita could get the top seed.

walnuthoopsBasketball Rankings
Boys Basketball Top 10

1. Walnut (19-5) — The new No. 1 hasn’t lost in 2014. Winners of 11 straight playing the best defense in the Valley.
2. Damien (20-5) — I know what your going to say, they beat Walnut twice, how do you drop them? A: Both games were close. B: Rankings about what you’ve done lately.
3. Glendora (18-7) — Big week with coach Mike LeDuc earning 800th coaching victory.
4. Wilson (19-7) — Best season in years.
5. Los Altos (16-7) — Still a game ahead of Bonita for third.
6. Bonita (15-7) – When was the late time the Bearcats were 4-5 in the Hacienda?
7. Workman (18-6) — Rallied to beat Gladsone for the Montview League title.
8. South Hills (12-13) – Huskies are what they’re, a good Valley team in over their head in the Sierra.
9. Bishop Amat (13-12) – As far as Bishop Amat boys basketball is concerned, a winning record is considered progress.
10. Gladstone (19-3) — Great season regardless of both losses to Workman.

workmangirlsGirls Basketball Top 10
1. Bonita (21-2) — Still on the Open Division bubble but my sources believe they won’t get selected, which is actually a good thing.
2. Bishop Amat (19-6) — There once was a day when the Lancers were capable of competing for the Del Rey. Not anymore.
3. Diamond Ranch (17-5) — Don’t be surprised if it goes deep in the playoffs.
4. Covina (16-9) – Colts just keep on winning.
5. South Hills (15-8) — Still on only 3-5 in the Sierra.
6. Walnut (12-9) — How did they lose to West Covina?
7. Wilson (15-9) – Solid second in the Valle Vista.
8. Workman (14-8) — Closing in on second straight Montview title.
9. El Monte (12-7) — Showdown with Gabrielino on Wednesday.
10. Duarte (12-9) — Will finish second in the Montview.

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Northview wrestling does it again, wins CIF Division 2 Dual Title; Arroyo, Rowland advance to divisional finals

NORTHVIEW WINS DIVISION 2 TITLE: Northview High’s wrestling team left no doubt to any spectators in the South Hills High School gym Saturday night as to which team is the the best in Division II.
The Vikings claimed their third Division II CIF Dual championship in four years with a dominating 42-30 win over Servite.
“Each CIF championship is special, but this one is really special,” said Northview coach Bobby Bellamy. “We lost last year to Bosco, so we were able to get a little redemption and bring back the championship.”

ARROYO NEARLY WINS DIVISION 5 TITLE: Arroyo High’s wrestling team needed to win the final two matches of Saturday’s CIF-SS Division 5 Dual Meet Championships to dethrone defending champion Yorba Linda.
The Knights did just that, but not by enough points.
In Saturday’s second-to-last match at Irvine High, 220-pounder Joseph Pinon earned a 1-0 victory, which pulled Arroyo within five points of the Mustangs. That meant heavyweight Luis Hernandez needed to pin Yorba Linda’s Abe Ochoa for six team points.

ROWLAND SHOCKS EVERYONE ADVANCING TO DIVISION 3 FINALS: If you looked at the seedings, as well as history, it was supposed to be top-seeded, host and two-time defending champion Victor Valley facing No. 2-seeded and legendary Santa Ana Calvary Chapel in the finals.
But it was instead a pair of upstarts, No. 4-seeded Lake Elsinore Temescal Canyon and No. 3-seeded Rowland, fighting for the CIF-SS Division 3 Dual Meet Wrestling Championship.

BLOOMINGTON WINS DIVISION 4 TITLE: The celebration started earlier than expected for Bloomington in the finals of the Southern Section Division IV dual-meet wrestling championships Saturday night at Quartz Hill High.
Four matches remained, but the result was a foregone conclusion after Derek Abeln pinned Downey’s Juan Soto in 1 minute, 21 seconds at 170 pounds to clinch the Bruins’ fifth consecutive division title.

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Workman seizes control of Montview, beats Gladstone

Gladstone's Manny Chavaria (#30) gets the ball stripped away by Workman's Noah Juarez (#14) and Alan Matron (#10) in their Montview League game at Gladstone High School in Covina on Friday February 7, 2014. Workman defeated Gladstone 43-39. (Staff Photo by Keith Durflinger/San Gabriel Valley Tribune)

Gladstone’s Manny Chavaria (#30) gets the ball stripped away by Workman’s Noah Juarez (#14) and Alan Matron (#10) in their Montview League game at Gladstone High School in Covina on Friday February 7, 2014. Workman defeated Gladstone 43-39. (Staff Photo by Keith Durflinger/San Gabriel Valley Tribune)

By John Honell

COVINA — With first place on the line, Workman took a huge step toward its third consecutive Montview League title by rallying for a 43-39 win over host Gladstone on Friday night.
The Lobos (18-6, 11-1) came from behind in the second half to knock off the Gladiators (19-3, 10-2), who were seeking their first league championship since 2000. The Lobos have a one-game lead over the Gladiators with two to play.

J.P. Rodriguez brought the Lobos within two points, 17-15, with two long 3-pointers in the last minute of the first half.
He hit back-to-back long 3s to open the third quarter, then forced a turnover that led to a layup by Oliver Lopez. After a Gladiators timeout, he stole the ball at mid-court and made a layup for the Lobos’ biggest lead of the game 25-19.
Workman coach Martin Flores: “That seemed to rock them back on their heels. It was just enough and these guys kept their composure and got a couple of steals and took care of it. J.P. is our MVP. He seems to come up the big plays at the right moment.”
Gladstone coach Gary Kilmer: That’s kind of been Workman’s M.O. They come out strong in the third quarter. We answered the bell but that (J.P. Rodriguez) buried some long shots. He had an outstanding game but we had our chances.”
J.P. Rodriguez: “I just felt like we had to pick up our defense. Our offense was really slow. I was trying to get a better shot because (Gladstone’s) Ben Reaves is a really good defender and I got just a little bit of space so I just had to shoot it (even if it was a long shot).”

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Boys Basketball: Claremont rallies for 63-61 win over Damien in overtime

By Stephen Ramirez
@SteveRRamirez on Twitter
If the Damien High School entertained any thoughts of winning a piece of the Sierra League title, it had to win out.
Claremont all but put those hopes to rest.
Chris Edwards scored 20 points, including two baskets in overtime, and the host Wolfpack rallied for 63-61 victory over the Spartans in a league game on Friday.

Omar Mahmoud also had 20 points for Claremont, which improved to 18-8 overall and 5-3 in league play.
Malik Fitts had 19 points for Damien, which slipped to 20-5 and 6-2. Jeremy Hemsley, who fouled out with a little more than two minutes left, had 14 points.
The Spartans had a chance to tie the score, but Fitts missed a 3-pointer with about eight seconds left and after being fouled with 0.7 seconds left, Tyler Ginyard made just one of three free throws.
Damien coach Matt Dunn: “I guess that’s the result. We don’t really talk about that (the league race). Our goal every year is to play our best basketball at the end of the year. I thought we grew in some areas tonight, but not in others. The next couple of weeks we can try to perfect it and see what can happen in the playoffs.”

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WRESTLING: Northview top seed at Saturday’s CIF-SS Division 2 dual finals at South Hills HS

STORY: Northview High School has been the area’s dominant wrestling program, winning six CIF-Southern Section dual championships, and the Vikings will get a chance to add to their trophy collection.
Northview received the top seed for Division 2 when the CIF-SS released pairings for its dual championships on Thursday.
The one-day event in scheduled for Saturday in six divisions at various sites. All first rounds are scheduled for 11 a.m., with the quarterfinals and semifinals slated for 3 and 5 p.m., respectively. The finals will be at 7:15 p.m.

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Boys Basketball Schedule: Workman visits Gladstone for all the marbles in the Montview

TONIGHT: The big game tonight is for first in the Montview, Workman (17-6, 10-1) at Gladstone (18-2, 9-1) for sole possession of first. John Honell is covering it for us. Steve Ramirez is covering Damien at Claremont.
Boys Basketball Schedule
Baseline League

Glendora at Los Osos, 6:30 p.m. (for sole possession of third)
Del Rey League
Bishop Amat at St. Bernard, 7 p.m. (Amat can lock down third)
Hacienda League
West Covina at Walnut, 6:45 p.m. (Mustangs can clinch league outright with win)
Los Altos at Rowland, 6:45 p.m. (Battling for third along with idle Bonita)
Diamond Bar at Diamond Ranch, 6:45 p.m. (Brahmas can remain in second with win)
Mission Valley League
Gabrielino at Mountain View, 6:30 p.m. (Gabby still game ahead of SEL)
El Monte at South El Monte, 6:30 p.m. (Battle to secure second and stay in title hunt)
Arroyo at Rosemead, 6:30 p.m. (Fighting to avoid finishing last)
Montview League
Workman at Gladstone, 6 p.m. (Biggest game of the night for sole possession of first)
Azusa at La Puente, 6 p.m. (Warriors can do no worse than third)
Sierra Vista at Duarte, 6 p.m. (Playing for pride)
Ganesha at Bassett, 6 p.m. (Ditto, playing for pride)
Sierra League
Chino Hills at Ayala, 6:30 p.m. (CHills still undefeated in league)
Damien at Claremont, 6:30 p.m. (Spartans can secure second and stay one-game back of CHills)
South Hills at Charter Oak, 6:30 p.m. (Playing for area pride).
Valle Vista League
Northview at Wilson, 6:30 p.m. (Wilson won league, trying to stay unbeaten)
Pomona at Baldwin Park, 6:30 p.m. (Pomona trying to remain in third)
Covina at Nogales, 6:30 p.m. (Covina one-game back of third)

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Girls Soccer: Ayala, Claremont, South Hills and St. Lucy’s battling for two playoff spots; Claremont-Damien boys battle Friday

While we were all focused on signing day, the Inland Insider Tom Kiss was at Ayala’s 1-0 victory over St. Lucy’s which makes the Sierra League standings crazy with a week left and three games to play. Chino Hills is in, but who gets the next two automatic D-2 berths. Ayala, Claremont, South Hills and St. Lucy’s will fight it out. In boys soccer, Claremont is at Damien on Friday. If Damien wins, they wrap-up the Sierra. If Claremont wins, they’re tied for first. Clay Fowler is covering it for us today and the Inland Insider is there for highlights.

Sierra Girls Soccer Standings
Chino Hills 6-1
Ayala 4-3
Claremont 4-3
South Hills 3-3-1
St. Lucy’s 2-4-1
Charter Oak 1-6
Friday’s games
Claremont vs. St. Lucy’s at Damien HS, 5:30 p.m.
Charter Oak vs. South Hills at CDF, 5:30 p.m.
Ayala at Chino Hills, 5:30 p.m.

Sierra Boys Soccer Standings
Damien 6-0-1
Claremont 4-0-3
Chino Hills 4-3
South Hills 1-4-1
Ayala 1-4-1
Charter Oak 0-5-2
Friday’s games
Damien at Claremont, 5:30 p.m.
South Hills at Charter Oak, 5:30 p.m.
Chino Hills at Ayala, 5:30 p.m.

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WHO’S GOT NEXT: When will Kurt Scoby sign with Fresno State and where will area player of the year Joseph Mayorga play next? Read all about it

josephmayorgaSTORY: With Signing Day now in the rear view mirror, it’s time for area football fans to turn their attention to next year’s class of local high school football recruits. And if early returns are any indicator, the local class of 2015 it could be just as lucrative as ‘14.
Arguably the area’s biggest hotbed of recruiting activity will be at Muir where the Mustangs have two outstanding receiver/defensive back prospects in Taeon Mason and DeSean Holmes. Mason just recently gave an early verbal commitment to USC, but if recent history tells us anything, early commits are about as valuable as pet rocks.

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Sierra wraps up Montview League boys soccer title with 2-1 win over Duarte

Above: Sierra Vista’s David Rosales (11) celebrates with teammate Mario Saenz (15) after scoring the second goal of the game. (Keith Birmingham Pasadena Star-News)

STORY: It did not matter if Sierra Vista High School boys soccer coach Jose Rodriguez received a water cooler bath on Thursday. He was already drenched from the rain.
But the Dons players gave their coach the shower anyway after they defeated host Duarte, 2-1, to clinch the Montview League title with two games to play.
David Rosales scored in the game’s 37th minute to break a 1-1 tie, minutes after a steady downpour ended.
“We had to win,” Rodriguez said. “I was not too worried when it was 1-1. I was thinking we’ll go to overtime and keep working. You have to work out of it.”

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Serra routs Bishop Amat girls basketball, 65-26

STORY: Serra had only beaten Bishop Amat by six in their last meeting so they were not about to take the Lancers lightly at home.
After a slow first half, the Cavaliers turned up their defensive intensity and won 65-26 for a Del Rey League win.
Serra (21-2, 6-0) held Bishop Amat (19-7, 3-4) to only seven points in the second half and closed the game on an impressive 37-3 run.
“We tried to come out hard because this game meant a lot to us,” Kayla Bibb said. “They beat Bishop Montgomery earlier so we just wanted to win”

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Girls Water Polo: Bonita wraps up another Hacienda League title with 12-6 win over Los Altos

By Stephen Ramirez
@SteveRRamirez on Twitter
Bonita High School will leave the Hacienda League at the same level it entered it — as the dominant girls water polo program.
Natalie Rivas and Erin Gonzalez scored three goals each and Bonita wrapped up its fourth consecutive league title with a 12-9 victory over host Los Altos on Thursday in a game featuring two teams ranked in the top 10 of CIF-Southern Section Division 4.
Claire Turner and Kirra Hemric also had two goals for second-ranked Bonita, which improved to 18-9 overall and 7-0 in the Hacienda League.
Brooke Contreras had four goals for No. 7 Los Altos, which slipped to 11-11 and 4-2.
Bonita countered Los Altos’ early surge with three quick goals to take a 3-2 lead after the first quarter. Gonzalez scored on a back-hand shot in the hole before her and Turner followed with tallies to make it 3-2.
The Bearcats then scored on their first three shots in the second quarter to take a 7-3 lead at halftime.
Bonita, after Los Altos, closed within 9-6 after three quarters, outscored the Conquerors, 3-0, in the fourth to win 12-6.

Bonita coach Andy Rosenberg: “I’m pleased with my girls,” said Bonita coach Andy Rosenberg. We got down, but kept our composure and came back. I really liked that. It was really good, to be here in a hostile environment and come back. (Los Altos) is a good team. They never give up, and I imagine they will do well in CIF and we may wind up seeing them again.”
Los Altos coach Chris Coleman: “It was a fantastic start, then we were down 3-2 after simple mistakes. They scored from the five spot two times in a row. It kind of fell apart.”
Bonita’s Claire Turner: “We have a lot of good scorers. But we wanted to work on our defense against them.”

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Signing Day: High School athletes make their dreams come true on National Signing Day .. watch video, read bio’s


Read updates and bio’s of area players signing national letters for USC, UCLA and where local players are headed. Get Live updates throughout the day


SIGNING DAY FOOTBALL STORY: From Friday night lights to Saturday afternoon dreams.
The area sent another bumper crop of local high school football prospects to the next level on Wednesday as part of National Signing Day festivities.
From La Habra to Charter Oak to Diamond Ranch to Pasadena, and many places in between, top local football recruits realized their dreams by finalizing their college destinations.
At La Mirada, it was a who’s who of college football powers that saw Matadores join their respective programs. Tight end Tyler Luatua signed with Notre Dame and receiver Dallis Todd signed with Oklahoma.
They weren’t the only Matadores to sign on the dotted line, though. Lineman Michael Trani signed with Cal and Nofo Ti’i signed with Navy.

2014 February signees
Donavin Washington, Charter Oak, Stony Brook
Eric Prevost, Charter Oak, Montana State
Jake Payton, Bonita, Army
Kammy Delp, Diamond Ranch, Oregon State
Matt Preston, Diamond Ranch, Navy
Sidney Jones, West Covina, Washington
Tanner Carew, Damien, Oregon
Tristan Vizcaino, Damien, Washington
Tyler Brown, Diamond Bar, Northern Arizona
Dallis Todd, La Mirada, Oklahoma
Darrel Cloy Jr., La Habra, Arizona
Dejon Williams, Muir, New Mexico State
Greg Gaines, La Habra, Washington
Michael Trani, La Mirada, California
Nofo Ti’i, La Mirada, Navy
Toa Lobendahn, La Habra, USC
Tyler Luatua, La Mirada, Notre Dame
Will Bryan, Diamond Ranch, Yale
Deshawn Potts, Monrovia, Fresno State
Khylan Brooks, Charter Oak, Azusa Pacific
Marcus Briscoe, Diamond Ranch, Columbia


Video interviews with signees from soccer, track and volleyball

Story: If national signing day is the Christmas Day of prospective college athletes, then the gifts were plenty for area competitors.Los Altos girls volleyball player Marisa Rojo led a list of 12 area athletes who signed scholarship offers on Wednesday.

Juan Raymundo Barajas Dominguez, Glendora, Loyola Marymount
Adam Fox, Los Altos, UC Irvine
Samantha Verduzco, Los Altos, Biola
Drew Williams, Claremont, East Carolina University
Madison Stark, Claremont, Arizona State
Allison Kung, Wilson, Cal Poly Pomona
Amanda Ball, Chino Hills, UC Santa Barbara
Ashley Gonzales, Chino Hills, Long Beach State
Marisa Rojo, Los Altos, San Francisco State
Mackenzie Landa, Bonita, Fresno State
Emily Hoey, Glendora, Tulane University

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Boys Basketball: Mike LeDuc gets 800th win as Glendora scores 63-56 victory at Upland

Glendora head coach Michael LeDuc, left, is congratulated by former Ramona (Riverside) head coach Dough Stockham who was LeDuc's high school coach after defeating Upland 63-56 for his 800th win as a head coach during a prep basketball game at Upland High School

Glendora head coach Michael LeDuc, left, is congratulated by former Ramona (Riverside) head coach Dough Stockham who was LeDuc’s high school coach after defeating Upland 63-56 for his 800th win as a head coach during a prep basketball game at Upland High School

By Stephen Ramirez
@SteveRRamirez on Twitter
For Glendora High School coach Mike LeDuc, the Tartans’ success over the past three decades has never been about one man.
So much so on a day when LeDuc scored his 800th victory with a 63-56 win at Upland on Tuesday, he deflected this personal milestone to what it meant for this Glendora team, to beat one of the better teams in the Baseline League on the road, and do so in impressive fashion.
Glendora (17-7 overall 3-4 in league), getting 19 points from senior guard A.J. Bigornia and 16 from Thomas Rico, played arguably its best game of the season, holding Upland (13-11, 3-4) to under 40-percent shooting while outscoring the Highlanders, 37-22, during the second and third quarters to take control.

Glendora coach Mike LeDuc: “To me, it’s not about me (getting the 800th victory), but our guys playing pretty tough and starting to play better. It’s more about that than any milestone for me. We played tough, we played good. I think we are starting to play better. Upland is a very good team. We’ve lost the last couple of times we’ve come over here, so it was important that we played well, and we played tough.“

Glendora’s A.J. Bigornia: “It was really special. Coach has worked so hard all these years, coaching Cameron Murray, Tracy Murray, Casey Jacobson … It’s an honor for me to be on his team.”

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Girls Soccer: Los Altos gets the best of Diamond Bar, 1-0, behind Samantha Verduzco’s game winner

Tuesday’s girls soccer score: Claremont 2, South Hills 1

By Fred J. Robledo
It has been a few years since the Los Altos girls soccer team three-peated as league champions, so coach Chris Reeder didn’t mind the gatorade shower following the Conquerors’ 1-0 victory over visiting Diamond Bar to inch closer to their first league title since 2010.

Los Altos (14-2-3, 7-0-1), ranked fifth in CIF-Southern Section Division 3, is a full two-games ahead of ninth-ranked Diamond Bar (13-4-3, 6-2-1) with five to play, and owns the tiebreaker over the Brahmas, the two-time defending league champs.

Los Altos tied Diamond Bar 1-1 earlier in the season.

“We’re two games ahead at this point and there are some good teams left to play, but it’s nice to put this space between us and everyone else,” Reeder said. “I told the team, we don’t have any Laurin Stupin’s or Tara Cofer’s (from past championships teams) on this (squad), but this might be the best team I’ve ever coached. Top to bottom we don’t have a lot of weaknesses. And we don’t have that crazy star player, but we’re a complete team and the girls really believe and work hard.”

VIDEO of Los Altos’ Samantha Verduzco scoring the game-winner in the 29th minute ..

VIDEO of Los Altos celebrating and coach Chris Reeder getting a shower afterward …

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Soccer Rankings: Sierra Vista boys remain undefeated, Diamond Bar, Los Altos girls meet today


1. Sierra Vista (16-0-2) — Trying to go undefeated in the regular season with a tough test Thursday at Duarte.
2. Damien (11-3-3) – Can all but secure Sierra League title with a victory over Claremont on Friday.
3. Diamond Bar (14-6-1) — Leading the Hacienda with big game against Diamond Ranch on Thursday.
4. El Monte (11-1-0) – Took it to Arroyo in the rematch, 4-2, to take control of MVL.
5. Arroyo (9-3-3) – Not a good week for the Knights, losing to Mountain View and El Monte.
6. Northview (13-3-2) — Can officially say the biggest surprise of the season by bar.
7. Baldwin Park (12-4-2) – Will host Northview next week for the Valle Vista league title.
Sets the tone in Valle Vista
8. Diamond Ranch (11-4-4) — Can get back in title race with a victory over Diamond Bar, Thursday.
9. Bishop Amat (8-5-3) — Trying to taste the CIF playoffs for the first time in a long time.
10. Duarte (12-5) — Gets big rematch at home with Sierra Vista on Thursday.

1. Mario Saenz, Sierra Vista, 25
2. Sebastian Ocampo, Sierra Vista, 21
3. Andre Gamboa, Diamond Bar, 19
4. Michael Flores, Sierra Vista, 12
5t. Guy Horcasitas, Diamond Bar, 11
5t. Evan Ball, Glendora, 11
5t. Federico Hurtado, Charter Oak, 11
5t. Jacob Bianchessi, Damien, 11
9t. Manuel Medina, Los Altos, 9
9t. Kelly Craft, Diamond Bar, 9

1. South Hills (14-2-2) – Only losses to powerful Chino Hills. Will find out if it can hold on to second in Sierra with St. Lucy’s, Claremont, Ayala chasing them.
2. Bishop Amat (15-5-3) — On the road at St. Joseph’s today for sole possession of first in the Del Rey.
3. Los Altos (13-2-3) — Can take control of the Hacienda with a victory at home against defending champion Diamond Bar today.
4. Diamond Bar (13-3-3) — Big slip-up losing to Bonita in overtime.
5. Sierra Vista (15-3-0) — Enough practicing in the Montview, Dons are ready for the playoffs.
6. San Dimas (11-6-0) — Saints clinched the Valle Vista league and are ready for another post-season run.
7. St. Lucy’s (8-10-2) – Overall record ugly, but that’s the price for a tough non-league schedule and playing in the Sierra.
8. Charter Oak (8-10-0) – Before you wonder why the Chargers are still ranked, just look at their pre-league resume.
9. Wilson (10-8-3) – With Cal Poly Pomona bound Allison Kung, the Wildcats could do some damage in the playoffs.
10. South El Monte (6-3-1) — In first-place tie with Gabrielino for the MVL lead.

Goal Scoring Leaders
1. Jessica Lopez, Sierra Vista, 21
2. Jaline Miranda, Azusa, 20
3. Alison Kung, Wilson, 19
4t. Hailey Zerbel, South Hills, 17
4t. Sofia Serafin, Bishop Amat, 17
6. Samantha Verduzco, Los Altos, 16
7. Daisy Ruiz, Sierra Vista, 14
8. Alejandra Vargas, Sierra Vista, 12
9t. Jackie Zermeno, South Hills 11
9t. Ashley Bell, Diamond Bar, 11

Baseline League
Del Rey League
Hacienda League
Mission Valley League
Montview League
Sierra League
Valle Vista League

Baseline League
Del Rey League
Hacienda League
Mission Valley League
Montview League
Sierra League
Valle Vista League

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Girls Basketball: Covina all but wraps up Valle Vista League after rallying for 45-37 victory over Wilson

By Stephen Ramirez
@SteveRRamirez on Twitter
Covina and Wilson high school have taken turns winning the Valle Vista League girls basketball titles the previous two seasons, and Dominique Theus put the Colts in position to add to their trophy collection.
The senior scored a game-high 20 points and keyed a second-half surge as host Covina took a major step toward the league title with a 45-37 victory over Wilson on Monday.
The Colts, also getting 10 points from Mariah Sierra and eight from Daeanera Tuaua, improved to 15-9 overall and 9-0 in league play. Covina, ranked No. 6 in the Valley, moves two games ahead of Wilson with three games left. Wilson, which went 12-0 in winning the league title last season, slipped to 14-9 and 7-2. The Wildcats were led by Elizabeth Lau and Kaelyn Kawamoto, with 14 and 10 points, respectively.

Sierra, after Lau made two free throws at 3:17, then hit a 3-pointer for a 38-37 lead with 2:48 left. Sierra then made a fast-break layup with 53 seconds left before Theus sank two free throws for a 43-37 lead with 42 seconds left to clinch it.

Covina coach Nick Masi: “I can’t be more proud of my players, my coaching staff from fighting back from unranked (to begin the season) to (possibly) league champs. I can’t be any more proud of them. I’ll be honest. Wilson was the league favorites. We knew that and (winning) it was our goal. It was something we just couldn’t do last year, but they became champions tonight by beating (Wilson) twice. That’s a big deal.”

Wilson coach Chris Roberts: “You have to give Covina all the credit in the world. We couldn’t get the shots we wanted today. It was the same thing when we ran into them at our place. They’re a very disciplined team, defensively. We tried has hard as we could, but in the end, they were more effective, defensively.”
Dominique Theus: “We were down by seven at halftime, but I told my team we have to win. We have to do what we have to do on defense, play smart and try our best on offense and come out ahead.”

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Breaking News: Diamond Bar football coach Ryan Maine resigns

WHO’S NEXT: Some of the immediate names that come to mind that Diamond Bar may pursue include South Hills’ Steve Bogan (not currently coaching), Monrovia’s Ryan Maddox (recently resigned), La Puente’s Scott Morrison, Rosemead’s Matt Koffler (not currently coaching) and Etiwanda’s Brandon Rohrer, to name a few. Diamond Bar is a great place to teach and coach football and the job will come with a teaching position, which should peak the interest of high-profile high school coaches.

ryanmainePRESS RELEASE: Diamond Bar school officials issued a press release announcing the resignation of Diamond Bar football coach Ryan Maine. The release stated, “Ryan and his wife Lindsay are pursuing opportunities for their family that may include relocation.” Maine will remain a teacher at Diamond Bar, at least for now.
“We truly appreciate all that Coach Maine has done for the program over his entire history at DBHS. We fully support him and his wife in their future endeavors and wish them the best of luck,” said Principal Catherine Real.

“We will be conducting a comprehensive search for a new Head Football Coach to ensure that our student athletes will be successful for years to come.”
Maine resigns after three years as the head coach.
“We appreciate the efforts that Coach Maine and his entire staff have made over the last three years,” Diamond Bar athletic director Kurt Davies wrote in a statement. We are in a much better place because of this. Principal Real and I have already begun the search for a new Head Coach and are excited to see where that search will take us. Coach Maine will still be around for the immediate future and will assist in making the transition as smooth as possible. I can’t thank Ryan and Lindsay enough for the extreme sacrifice they have made over the last three years to bring Brahma football back where it belongs.”

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Bishop Amat heading to Texas on Sept. 5 to take on Class 4A champion Aledo

Defending Class 4A champion Aledo (Texas) High has agreed to host La Puente (Cali.) Bishop Amat in the early going of the 2014 season.
Hercules Sports Management president Brian Hercules negotiated the game and informed that the two will play on Sept. 5 at 8pm in the Lone Star State.
Aledo was ranked No. 54 in the HSFB100 to conclude the 2013 season while Bishop Amat finished with a 6-4 record and was not ranked in the expanded California Top 30.


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Basketball Rankings: Damien, Bonita still No. 1; Glendora coach Mike LeDuc goes for 800th win at Claremont

glendorahoopsBasketball Rankings
Boys Basketball Top 10

1. Damien (19-4) — The best in the Valley? Yes. The best in the Sierra? Not even close, Chino Hills answered that with an easy blowout.
2. Walnut (17-5) — Can they go undefeated in the Hacienda? So far, so good
3. Glendora (16-7) — Coach Mike LeDuc goes for his 800th career victory on Tuesday at Upland.
4. Los Altos (15-6) — In a tight race for second along with Diamond Bar and Bonita.
5. Bonita (15-6) – Would have moved them ahead of Los Altos after beating Conqs, but it followed with a loss to struggling Diamond Ranch.
6. Wilson (16-7) — Should finish undefeated in the Valle Vista.
7. Workman (16-5) — Should finish undefeated in the Montview if it can beat Gladstone on the road Friday.
8. Gladstone (18-2) — Will get Workman at home Friday for a chance to tie for first in the Montview.
9. South Hills (10-11) – According to MaxPreps, Huskies should be area’s seventh-ranked team.
10. Bishop Amat (12-11) – Won three of its last four, including a win over La Salle and St. Bernard.

WheatGirls Basketball Top 10
1. Bonita (20-2) — Super senior Nikki Wheatley inching closer to closing her career with four straight undefeated Hacienda League seasons.
2. Bishop Amat (17-5) — Lancers not worried about the Del Rey, getting ready for another CIF playoff run.
3. Diamond Ranch (16-5) — One of the Valley’s best every year but always second-fiddle to to Bonita.
4. Walnut (11-8) — Hacienda will have three strong playoff entries.
5. South Hills (14-8) — Why can’t they compete in an average Sierra League?
6. Covina (13-9) – A perfect 8-0 in the Valle Vista League.
7. Wilson (13-8) – Will get a crack against Covina to move into a tie for first in the Valle Vista.
8. Workman (12-8) — Won rematch with Duarte to take over first in the Montview.
9. Duarte (11-8) — Falcons lose rematch with Workman, fall to second.
10. El Monte (12-7) — Tied for Mission Valley League lead with Gabrielino at 5-1

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Prices are right for Wilson; Wildcats rout San Dimas in Valle Vista League showdown

Wilson's Kyle Price (3) drives to the basket past San Dimas' Omar Nasri (50) in the first half of a prep basketball game at Wilson High School in Hacienda Heights, Calif., on Friday, Jan. 31, 2014. (Keith Birmingham Pasadena Star-News)

Wilson’s Kyle Price (3) drives to the basket past San Dimas’ Omar Nasri (50) in the first half of a prep basketball game at Wilson High School in Hacienda Heights, Calif., on Friday, Jan. 31, 2014. (Keith Birmingham Pasadena Star-News)

By Stephen Ramirez
@SteveRRamirez on Twitter
Wilson High School began the season as the favorite to win the Valle Vista League boys basketball title, and the Wildcats will likely live up to that preseason billing.
Kyle Price scored a game-high 19 points and Kevin Price had 16 and 12 rebounds and host Wilson solidified its hold on first place with an 82-47 victory over second-place San Dimas on Friday.

The Wildcats, also getting nine points from Eric Lee and eight each from Justin Lee and Justin Chan, improved to 15-7 overall and 8-0 in league. San Dimas, getting 12 points each from Ryan Ocampo and Omar Nasri, slipped to 10-10 and 6-2.
Wilson, keyed by the inside play of Kevin Price and some cluth 3-point shooting from Li, put this one away after using runs of 11-1 and 14-6 in the third quarter to go up 53-33. The Wilcats then outscored San Dimas, 28-11 to win by 35.

Wilson coach Willie Allen: “It was huge and the boys knew it. They knew how big this was. They didn’t want to share any league title. They wanted to make sure we won this outright.
“We had a good game at San Dimas (earlier this season) that was close, and we wanted to send a message to the rest of the league.”

San Dimas coach Bruce Robbins: “We didn’t respond very well being down. Since we made the switch (to an up-tempo attack), we hadn’t been behind. Our kids just didn’t respond, or we didn’t respond to when we missed shots. When we missed shots, our heads went into the toilet somewhere. I guess I could have done something to slow the game down, but I really didn’t want to do that because we’re trying to get a certain way to playing in our kids’ minds that we think in the long run is better for us. I kept us playing the way we want to play, and Wilson did a nice job.”

Kevin Price: “We just (keep) our composure. (Basketball) is a game of runs. They had theirs and we had to stop it and get ours.”


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