Armenian General Benevolent Union, of Canoga Park, has already upset one area seeded team — Cantwell Sacred Heart of Mary — in the CIF-Southern Section 4A playoffs, and St. Paul will try to prevent a second occurrence when the Swordsmen host the Regals at 7 p.m. tonight.
LA MIRADA 77, SAVANNA 47
LA MIRADA >> La Mirada High School’s chase for its first CIF-Southern Section boys basketball title never looked easier.
The Matadores, after beating its first two playoff opponents by an average of 35 points, was again on cruise control on Friday, scoring a 77-47 victory over Savanna in a Division 2A quarterfinal game.
Kendall Lauderdale scored 28 points and Vittorio Reynoso-Avila had 20 as La Mirada improved to 26-4 and will play at Compton, a 59-52 winner over Righetti, in Tuesday’s semifinals. It’s the Matadores second consecutive trip to the divisional final four. Savanna finished 12-20.
La Mirada coach Bryce Jones: “It’s all about the players. We have talented players. I’m blessed with a great staff. Talented players make plays and win games. This school hasn’t had a ton of success outside (the run with) Derek Williams, so for us to get the semifinals in back-to-back years and win league, it’s special. I want the guys to enjoy it, but we have to get back to work tomorrow, watch the film on Compton and get ready to play.”
La Mirada’s Kendall Lauderdale: “I’m just came out with the mind-set that I had to go beast mode against them.”
– Stephen Ramirez
SONORA 76 DIAMOND RANCH 56
Josh Rodriguez scored a game-high 21 points and enior forward Ben Rico had 17 as the Raiders advanced to the finals for the second consecutive season. They will face Gahr, which beat Bonita, in the finals next week.
By Stephen Ramirez
FULLERTON – California High School enjoyed one of the better seasons in area boys soccer history this winter. But that meant little on Friday.
Miguel Tapia and Nick Vasquez had second-half goals and No. 4 seed Sunny Hills ended the Condors’ season with a 2-1 victory in a CIF-Southern Section Division 2 quarterfinal game.
The host Lancers, who got five saves from Nicholas Pedraza, improved to 20-3-2 and advanced to face La Quinta, a 3-2 winner over top seed Millikan, in Tuesday’s semifinals. California, which got its lone goal from Alex Preciado, finished 22-1.
California coach Ivan Todorovic: “We played well today. Maybe (Sunny Hills) wanted it more than us in the second half, but I still think we’re the better team. I think we deserved to advance to the next round. They got it at the end of the game, which was unfortunate for us. But I also want to congratulate my boys. This was the best season in the history of the school, and I’m proud of them.”
By John Sherrard
MONTEBELLO — The anticipated Cantwell Sacred Heart of Mary vs. St. Paul High School CIF-SS Division 4A semifinal girls basketball matchup won’t happen this year.
Cantwell, seeded third in the division, fell in an upset to a virtual unknown school from the San Fernando Valley, Armenian General Benevolent Union, of Canoga Park, 43-38, in a quarterfinal game Thursday night.
“I don’t want to take anything away from AGBU, they played a great game, but I felt personally that my team picked the wrong day to mentally break down in key moments of this game,” first-year Cantwell coach Matt Zamora said.
“Hats off to them because when we broke down, they capitalized and they did it just enough to keep them ahead.”
One major breakdown was at the free throw line for the Cardinals. They shot only 43 percent, connecting on 10 of 23 attempts.
Leading the way for the Cardinals was sophomore forward Lily Perkins with 14 points. Sammy Flores added six points on two 3-pointers.
By Stephen Ramirez
WHITTIER — Whenever the La Serna High School girls soccer team needed a big effort over the past few seasons, Michelle Reed was always there to step up.
The senior did it again Thursday.
Reed scored on a free kick in the 66th minute and the Lancers advanced to the CIF-Southern Section semifinals for the third time in four seasons with a 1-0 victory over visiting Colony in a Division 5 quarterfinal game.
La Serna, the division’s No. 4 seed, improved to 18-4-5 and will host top seed La Quinta in the semifinals on Tuesday. Colony, which got seven saves from goalie Natalie Yep, finished 16-5-2.
La Serna’s Michelle Reed: “I was trying to find the back post. It was in an awkward spot, where the keeper didn’t know if she should come out or not. It wound up being awkward and it went in.”
SIERRA VISTA 2, SCHURR 0
Sierra Vista forward Alejandra Vargas said the curse is over.
After three straight quarterfinal losses, Sierra Vista girls soccer finally got over the hump with a 2-0 victory over Schurr in Thursday’s CIF-Southern Section Division 6 quarterfinals.
Sierra Vista, which won the school’s only team title when it won a divisional soccer title in 2010, will host Temescal Canyon, a 1-0 winner over Summit, in Tuesday’s semifinals.
– Fred Robledo
LA MIRADA 1, ROYAL O
Maddy Bennett scored the game-winning goal to lead the Matadores (24-2) to advance to the semifinals against Santa Monica.
St. Monica at La Mirada, 3 p.m.
La Quinta at La Serna, 3 p.m.
By Stephen Ramirez
SANTA FE SPRINGS – The St. Paul and Cantwell Sacred Heart of Mary high school girls basketball teams opened the CIF-Southern Section playoffs knowing that if they took care of business they could meet in a mammoth Division 4A semifinal.
The No. 2 seed Swordsmen did their part Wednesday.
Clarissa Perez scored a career-high 30 points and St. Paul advanced to the division final four with a 64-52 victory over Notre Dame Academy, of Los Angeles, in the quarterfinals.
Cantwell, the No. 3 seed, gets its chance Thursday night when it hosts Armenian General Benevolent Union, of Canoga Park, at 7 p.m.
Adrianna Gonzalez also had 17 points for the Swordsmen, who improved to 19-13. Stephanie Umeh had 14 points and Kendall Chan 12 for the Regals, who slipped to 16-13.
St. Paul, after leading by 16 points at halftime, look like it might let this one slip through its fingers after Notre Dame put on a 13-1 blitz to pull with 38-34 late in the third quarter. Umeh then followed a 3-pointer by Chan with a drive and layup to get it to 50-48 with 4:51 left.
Then the Swordsmen’s defense took over. Gonzalez drove the baseline for a 52-48 lead before St. Paul forced three consecutive turnovers, which led to three straight layups, including two by Perez to push it to 58-50 with 2:30 remaining.
St. Paul’s Clarissa Perez: “It’s nice to go to the semifinals. It’s good for our team, good for our tradition, it’s good for our school. Everyone is excited and ready to go. Everyone is on the same page, which is all we can ask.”
VALLEY VIEW 72, EL RANCHO 35
Crystal Rodriguez scored 17 points and Sarah Gurrola had 13 for the Dons, who finished 20-11.
Corona del Mar 57, Sonora 47
By Stephen Ramirez
WHITTIER – This might be the best season in the La Serna High School boys soccer team’s history. But it won’t include a CIF-Southern Section title.
Jorge Corona had a goal and assist and No. 3 seed Santa Ana ended the host Lancers’ season with a 3-0 victory in a Division 2 second-round game.
Ezequiel Morales and Alex Resendiz also had goals for the Saints, who improved to 17-4-1 and will travel to Long Beach Cabrillo for the quarterfinals on Friday. La Serna finished 18-5-4.
La Serna’s John Delgadillo: “I feel great. This game was the best game we played. Even though we lost, it was our best, and you couldn’t ask for a (better performance).”
CALIFORNIA 3, CENTURY 1
The Condors stayed undefeated with a solid win in the second round. They will travel to No. 4 seed Sunny Hills on Friday.