Ramon Juarez, in his 15th season at Pioneer High School, has been relieved of his coaching dutes, Pioneer principal Monica Oviedo confirmed Monday.
Juarez, who will remain as the school’s athletic director, was 65-88-1, including finishing last in the Del Rio League this season at 1-9.
Oviedo refused to answer any questions directly, but referred to an e-mail statement in which she said:
“It is with mixed feelings that we share with you that after 15 seasons, Ramon Juarez will no longer serve as head football coach at Pioneer High School. Ramon began his coaching career at Pioneer High School as an assistant in 1991, and was later promoted to head coach in 1997. His coaching legacy includes a Del Rio League championship in 1998, 2 CIF quarterfinal appearances in 1998 and 2002 as well as Del Rio League/All Area Coach of the Year honors in 1998 and NFL (high school) Coach of the Week honors in 1998 and 2003. Ramon is a man of tremendous character and integrity, who thrived in building positive relationships with countless young men and women through his role as head football coach. His knowledge of the game and respect from his peers in the coaching ranks is unparalleled. Ramon’s effort, resilience, and commitment to the football players at Pioneer High School are deeply appreciated.”
Calls to Juarez have yet to be returned.
This season, I will give my predictions for all the area games from week to week. Want to play? Just add your projections and keep your tally and see how you match up. Record (season total, last week): Ramirez (78-43, 3-2) Last Week: It was a decent week. I let it ride too long on Cantwell. But who saw La Mirada’s upset of Arcadia? This week: We’re down to the elite 3, with La Habra, La Mirada and La Serna still alive. All three, as you would expect, have tough games in the semfinals. I like La Habra against El Toro in the Southwest, but the Chargers are no pushover. La Mirada and La Serna, both in the Southeast, will be up against it. La Mirada gets top seed and 2010 champion West Coviina, which is still the heavy favorite to repeat. La Mirada already shocked one team in Arcadia, can they do it again? There’s a chance with the way the Mats line is playing, but you have to go with the favorite and so will I, but it could be close. La Serna also has to play a perfect game. Remember, Muir destroyed Santa Fe, which beat the Lancers. My heart says to take La Serna, but after watching Muir take apart the Chiefs and seeing a 48-0 score over Diamond Ranch, makes me go with the Mustangs. Here are this week’s predictions:
Friday, Nov. 25 Southwest Division
El Toro (11-1 at La Habra (9-3), 7:30 p.m. — La Habra Southeast Division
West Covina (11-1) at La Mirada (8-4), 7:30 p.m. — West Covina
Muir (8-4) at La Serna (9-3) at Cal HS, 7:30 p.m. — Muir
It will be home sweet home for the area’s final three when they play in next week’s CIF-Southern Section divisional semifinals. All three area teams — La Habra in the Southwest and La Mirada and La Serna in the Southeast — will be at home in their respective final fours.
La Habra, seeking its fifth division title and seventh overall, will host El Toro. It should be noted that Highlanders also received a break if it advances to the final, because their expected chief challenger – No. 1 Villa Park, was upset in the quarters, losing 35-7 to Tustin.
La Mirada, back in the semifinals after a year hiatus, host No. 1 West Covina, with La Serna, back in the semifinals for the second consecutive season, hosts Muir, which has outscored its first two playoff opponents, 87-7, including beating Del Rio League champ Santa Fe, 39-7, in the first round.
Who gets in? And what should be our feature game? I’m heavily leaning toward West Covina at La Mirada. Here’s next Friday’s schedule:
West Covina (11-1) at La Mirada (8-4)
Muir (8-4) at La Serna (9-3) Southwest Division
El Toro (11-1) at La Habra (9-3) All games are tentatively scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
What at night!
It paid Friday night if you’re an area high school team with a name that begins with ‘La,’ as La Habra, La Mirada and La Serna all advanced to the semifinals with close victories in the quarterfinals. La Serna rallied in the final moment to beat Los Altos, 42-38; La Mirada held off Arcadia, 31-28; and La Habra, seeking its fifth consecutive divisonal title, won a surprising close game in a 28-21 victory over Brea Olinda. Whittier Christian and Cantwell bowed out with losses of 67-21 to Monrovia and 49-22 to Lompoc/Cabrillo, respectively.
Here’s a brief rundown of each game. Southeast
La Serna 42, Los Altos 38 – Sophomore quarterback Frankie Palmer continues to play like a senior, accounting for 304 yards and four touchdowns, including scoring the game-winner with a 5-yard run with 1:06 to play. The Lancers, who lost to Bonita in the semifinals last season, held off a Los Altos drive at the end forcing a fumble inside their own six. They will host Muir at California High School on Friday. The Mustangs, who entered the playoffs as an at-large entry, followed up last week’s victory over No. 2 Santa Fe by beat Diamond Ranch, 48-0. La Mirada 31, Arcadia 28 – Johnny Hills wasn’t the Matadores No. 1 running back when the season began, but he showed his worth by rushing for 219 yards and two touchdowns as La Mirada advanced to the semifinals for the first time since winning the Southern Division in 2009. The Mats, who rallied back from a 28-10 deficit, will host top-seed and 2010 division champion West Covina in next week’s semifinals. The Bulldogs routed Pasadena, 55-12.
Southwest La Habra 28, Brea Olinda 21 – It’s back to the semifinals for the Highlanders, who used two third-quarter interceptions before holding off a furious rally against Brea Olinda. La Habra, seeking a fifth consecutive divisional title and its sixth overall, will host El Toro, which routed Yorba Linda, 58-20. Aaron Porter rushed for 114 yards and quarterback Sean Sparling threw for 115 yards to lead the Highlanders.
Mid-Valley Monrovia 67, Whittier Christian 21 – The Heralds were no match for the 2010 divisoin championships, who led 21-0 after the first quarter, 41-7 at halftime and 61-14 after three quarters. De’Shawn Ramirez ran for 129 yards and scored four touchdowns, including a 98-yard interception return, to lead Monrovia. Joel Rhone rushed for 124 yards and a touchdown in garbage time to lead Whittier Christian.
Northwest Cabrillo/Lompoc 49, Cantwell 22 – For the second consecutive season, a team from Lompoc did in the Cardinals. Cantwell, after committing five turnovers, where never in it, trailing 35-0 by halftime and 49-0 in the third quarter.Tim Walsh threw for 109 yards to lead the Cardinals.
Above: Whittier Christian doesn’t want to see this tonight. (Staff Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz)
It’s getting down to the nitty-gritty of CIF-Southern Section football with five area teams looking to punch their tickets to next week’s semifinals with quarter-final match-ups tonight. In the Southeast, La Mirada and La Serna take to the road, with games at Arcadia and Los Altos, respectively. La Habra, seeking its fifth consecutive divisional title, is also on the road, traveling to Brea Olinda, a team it beat 55-2 in Septemeber. Can the Highlanders repeat? Two area teams are at home: Cantwell Sacred Heart hosting Cabrillo of Lompoc in the Northwest and Whittier Christian getting 2010 champ Monrovia at Whittier College in the Mid-Valley, which is where I will be and tweet scoring plays and quarter updates. You can track all the scorers from our SGVN scoreboard and Mike Robledo will be at the Azusa-San Dimas Mid-Valley game at Citrus College with his weekly Cover-It-Live, where reporters will tweet from their games, including Tyler Drohan from the La Serna-Los Altos game. Below you will find links to the scoreboard and the Cover-It-Live. PREP XTRA LIVE POSTGAME SHOW: Don’t forget to tune in to the postgame show, with host Aram Tolegian and crew, where we look at the games and try to explain what happened.
Tonight’s schedule and predictions:
La Habra (8-3) at Brea Olinda (9-2), 7:30 p.m. — La Habra Southeast Division
La Mirada (7-4) at Arcadia (9-2), 7:30 p.m. – Arcadia
La Serna (8-3) at Los Altos (8-3), 7:30 p.m. – La Serna Mid-Valley Division
Monrovia (8-3) vs. Whittier Christian (7-4) at Whittier College, 7 p.m. – Monrovia Northwest Division
Lompoc Cabrillo (9-2) at Cantwell-Sacred Heart (8-3), 7:30 p.m. — Cantwell
And here’s a little tip from Rocky Balboa of what to do tonight when it gets tough!