Three weeks ago, the CIF Southern Section released seedings, pairings, and brackets for the “2012 CIF-Ford Southern Section Championships, presented by Farmers.” There were 350 girls’ basketball teams, 378 boys’ basketball teams, 266 girls’ soccer teams, 263 boys’ soccer teams, 130 girls’ water polo teams, and 89 boys’ wrestling teams.
Forty-six of our local Valley teams qualified to compete in these Championships in the following sports: girls’ basketball (12), boys’ basketball (14), girls’ soccer (8), boys’ soccer (8), and girls’ water polo (6). Scores of Valley wrestlers also competed for a chance at a CIF title
Seven teams made it to the Semi-finals; two teams are in the Finals; and two teams are CIF-Southern Section Champions.
Semi-finals: Murrieta girls’ basketball, Elsinore boys’ basketball, and Great Oak girls’ soccer made it all the way to the Semi-finals.
Finals: Cal Lutheran C-Hawks boys’ basketball will play Renaissance Academy Wildcats for the CIF-SS Division 6 Championship, March 3 at Mater Dei High School.
Finals: Lakeside Lancers boys’ soccer will play San Bernardino Cajon for the CIF-SS Division 5 Championship either Friday or Saturday.
Finals: Nine wrestlers will compete in the CIF State Championships Friday and Saturday at the Rabobank Arena in Bakersfield.
CIF-SS Champions, Division 3: Murrieta Valley Girls Water Polo
CIF-SS Champions, Division 5: Temescal Canyon Girls Water Polo
Congratulations to all the teams and athletes who represented our area and especially to our CIF Champions!
Twelve Valley teams qualified to compete in the 2011-12 CIF Southern Section-Ford Girls Basketball Championships, presented by Farmers; seven were eliminated in the first round; of the remaining five, four teams won their second round game and advanced to the quarterfinals. Only one Valley team made it to the Semi-Final Round: Murrieta Valley.
Division 1AA: (Top seed: Poly Long Beach (25-2), Moore League Champions)
OUT: Chaparral Lady Pumas (19-9) #2 Southwestern League lost to #2-ranked Mater Dei Lady Monarchs (25-3), #1 Trinity League, 74-41. The Monarchs are ranked #2 in the state (Cal-Hi Sports) #6 in te nation (Maxpreps.com) and have been to the finals the last three years.
The Lady Pumas held on to beat #15 Woodbridge Warriors (18-8) tied #1 Pacific Coast League, 44-41 to advance to the second round to face Mater Dei. UCLA-bound McDonald’s All-American Nirra Fields tied a school record of 41 points. The Lady Pumas were a victim of the full-court press; the turnovers were converted into points by Mater Dei. The Pumas’ Jessica Pino ended with 18 points; Abi Johnston had 11.
Division 1A: (Top Seed: Summit (21-3), Sunkist League Champion)
OUT: At-large Temecula Valley Golden Bears (12-13) beat #12 Santa Fe (16-10) #2 Del Rio League, 60-54 and Diamond Bar Brahmas (18-9), #2 Hacienda League, 57-33 to advance to the quarterfinals round against the Burbank Bulldogs (19-11) #2 Pacific League. They lost 58-49. Despite a 16-7 third quarter and a 28-point effort by guard Iman Lathan, the Lady Golden Bears were unable to stop the underdog Bulldogs from rallying to win the game.
OUT: #15 Paloma Valley Wildcats (18-9) beat Burroughs Indians of Burbank (12-16), #4 Pacific League, 70-51 to advance to the second round. They traveled to Lake Forest to face #2-seed El Toro Chargers (24-2) South Coast League Champion, who eliminated them from the playoffs, 68-46. Brandy Howard had 18 for the Wildcats.
Division 2A: (Top Seed: Foothill (21-5) Century League Runner-Up)
OUT: #2 Perris (21-6) destroyed at-large Beckman (11-15) Pacific Coast League, 83-36 and then killed the Kaiser Cats from Fontana (13-8) #4 Sunkist League, 66-36 to advance to the quarterfinals, where they lost to #10 Norco 61-57. Christine Saldana had 11 points; UC Davis-bound Aniya Baker had 19 pts.
OUT: #5 Murrieta Valley Lady Nighthawks (24-5) advanced to the semifinals on a buzzer-beating three-pointer by senior point guard Katie Clark as they defeated unseeded Righetti (16-12), 53-50. Clark ended up with 18 pts; Karen Wolf had 14; Brenda Bilton had 12. The Nighthawks had dominated at-large Beaumont (14-10) #3 Mountain Pass League, 72-40 in the first round and beat Indio 55-41 in the second round.
The Nighthawks traveled to Santa Ana Tuesday night to face #1-seed Foothill Knights (23-5), #2 Century League. It was a tale of two halves as the Knights came back from a 13-point deficit to eliminate the Nighthawks 54-39. UC Davis-bound senior guard Molly Gruebel exceeded all her averages as she led the Knights with 24 points, six rebounds, five steals, two assists, and one block. She scored half her points in four minutes in the fourth quarter. UC San Diego-bound teammate Taylor Hirz and freshman Kaylani Maiava added to the Knights dominance on the boards with six rebounds each; junior Hailey James added nine, as well as 11 points. Karen Wolf led the Nighthawks, with 18 points and six rebounds. Clark, who was averaging 12.4 ppg and 3.9 assists, was held to two points (free throws); she did have four rebounds, three assists and two steals. The Nighthawks upset the Knights in last year’s playoffs 59-56. The top-seeded Knights were in the finals in 2009; this would have been the first trip for the Nighthawks.
Congratulations to the twelve Valley teams who made it to the playoffs and to Murrieta Valley who made it one game away from a CIF title!
Two weeks ago, fourteen Valley boys basketball teams qualified to compete in the 2011-12 CIF Southern Section-Ford Boys Basketball Championships, presented by Farmers. Last week, there were four teams left; this week there were only two: #5 Elsinore in Division 2A, and #3 Cal Lutheran in Division 6. After this week’s action, there is only one team advancing to the Finals: the Cal Lutheran C-Hawks!
Division 1A: (Top Seed: Mission Viejo (23-3), South Coast League Champion)
OUT: #10 Vista Murrieta Broncos (16-12) lost in the quarterfinals to #2-ranked Capistrano Valley Cougars (25-4), 67-55. The Broncos had defeated at-large Alta Loma (10-16) 65-57 in overtime and Chino Hills 69-68 in the second round to advance.
The Cougars’ Aleks Lipovic scored fifteen of his 23 points in the first quarter; The Broncos’ Anthony White hit four of his first five shots, all 3’s. Turnovers made the difference. Broncos’ all-time leading scorer Davin Guinn ended with sixteen points and 12 rebounds.
Division 2A: (Top Seed: Mayfair(24-5) Suburban League Champion)
OUT: #5 Elsinore (27-3) #1 Sunbelt League stole a win from #3-ranked Leuzinger Olympians (21-5), Bay League Champions, in Friday’s quarterfinals, 70-66 to advance to the Semi-Finals.
The Tigers had previously blasted Patriot (15-11) #3 Sunkist League, 61-49 and dominated visiting Dominguez from Compton (10-17), #3 San Gabriel League, 88-56 to advance to the quarterfinal round.
The Olympians led 44-31 in the third quarter, but turnovers, missed shots and the Tigers’ EJ Twyman (26 points) and Lawrence Chamberlain (17 points, 9 rebounds) as well as the team’s 24-of-27 free throw shooting (Olympians were only 11-of-22) made the difference.
The Tigers traveled to Lakewood to take on #1-ranked Mayfair Monsoons (24-5), Suburban League Champions for the Semi-Finals match on Tuesday Feb 28th. Their poor start had them trailing 34-18 early in the third period. Sparked by Twyman, the Tigers went on a 28-11 run to briefly lead 46-45 with 4-1/2 minutes left in the fourth. A number of missed three point attempts and key turnovers late in the quarter sealed their fate. Twyman finished with thirty points to end his senior career.
OUT: #3 Murrieta Valley Nighthawks (25-3) #1 Southwestern League was upset by #6 Righetti Warriors (25-4) 32 PAC-7 League, 70-61 in Friday’s quarterfinal game. The Nighthawks had trounced Chino (10-13) #4 Mt Baldy League, 73-35 and
decimated the Troy Warriors of Fullerton (21-6) #2 Freeway League, 65-37 to advance to the quarterfinal round.
The Warriors’ overall height advantage and extremely hot shooting (over 60%) combined with the Nighthawks’ foul trouble and poor free throw shooting contributed to the loss. MVHS’ Darius Butler still had 27 points and 7 rebounds; Reid Shackelford added 13 points. Senior Ryan McGready scored 34 points for the Warriors.
Division 6: (Top seed: Renaissance Academy (23-6), Harbor Runner-Up)
IN: #2 Cal Lutheran C-Hawks (20-3) #1 Arrowhead League held on to defeat Hesperia Christian Patriots (23-6), Agape League Champion and #3-ranked Southern Section in Friday’s semi-finals game, 53-50.
The C-Hawks had thrashed New Covenant (9-9) Freelance, 66-26, defeated Desert Chapel (12-14) 65-61 in the second round and traveled to Eastside Christian in Fullerton (16-10) #3 San Joaquin League to win their quarterfinals game, 67-45.
Despite a nine-point C-hawks’ lead at halftime, the Patriots came back in the fourth quarter with a 17-9 run. The Patriots’ senior guard Trevor Hough had hit seven three’s on the night, but missed the game-tying shot in the final seconds to give the C-Hawks their first shot at a CIF title. Robert Riesenberg lef the C-hawks with 18 points (four 3’s) and 6’ 8” center Ryan Smith had 16 points, 16 rebounds and two blocks.
Cal Lutheran advances to the CIF-SS Division 6 Finals to face the top-seeded Renaissance Academy Wildcats (23-6) 9:30 am on March 3rd at Mater Dei High School.
The tournament will conclude with final Championship contests on Feb. 29 – March 3 at the Anaheim Convention Center Arena and also March 3 at the Meruelo Athletic Center on the campus of Mater Dei High School.
A total of 263 girls soccer teams were paired into seven single-elimination tournament brackets to compete in the 2011-12 CIF Southern Section-Ford Girls Soccer Championships, presented by Farmers. Only one team of the eight Valley girls soccer teams who qualified made it into semi-finals: Great Oak High School. Their journey ended Tuesday.
Division 2: (Top seed: Sunny Hills (21-1-0), Freeway League Champion)
OUT: Great Oak Wolfpack (16-5-3) #2 Southwestern League traveled this Tuesday to Fullerton to face #1-seed Sunny Hills (21-1-0) and were knocked out of the Semi-Final round, 2-1 to end their title hopes. The Lancers are ranked #13 in the state and #17 in the nation (Maxpreps.com). Despite a great second half of play in which the Wolfpack girls outshot Sunny Hills 10-0, they were unable to overcome the two early first half goals. Wolfpack goalkeeper Michelle Kraft is credited with three saves. Miki Brillon scored the lone Wolfpack goal.
Great Oak shutout three consecutive opponents in the playoffs as they travelled to beat Alta Loma (13-5-5) #2 Baseline League, 1-0 in the first round; they traveled to Rolling Hills Estates to play Palos Verdes Peninsula (18-2-4), Bay League Champion and the #22-ranked team in the nation and won 1-0 to advance to quarterfinals. The Wolfpack advanced to the Semi-Finals round by travelling to their third away game in a row and defeating Long Beach Poly (14-7-5) Moore League Champion with penalty kicks (3-0) after a scoreless tie.
Division 5: (Top Seed: Cabrillo Lompoc (22-1-6), Los Padres League Champion)
OUT: #8 Lakeside (14-6-5) #1 Sunbelt League faced the #1-seed Cabrillo Conquistadors in the Quarter Final round and lost 4-1. Cabrillo has been to the Semifinals two years in a row. They scored three goals in the first eight minutes; Rebekah Miranda had two goals and two assists. The Conquistadors double-teamed the section’s leading scorer Mackenzie Akins (45 goals); she had no shots on goal. Lakeside’s lone score came from Ramos Irais; Michelle Vasquez had two saves.
Lakeside had defeated Arrowhead Christian Academy (13-6-3) #3 Ambassador League, 7-1 and defeated the visiting Palm Desert’s Xavier Prep Saints (12-6-2), #2 Desert League, 3-0 to advance.
OUT: Paloma Valley (7-11-2) #2 Sunbelt League traveled 200 miles to Santa Ynez (11-8-3) #2 Los Padres League, and came home with a 2-1 win to advance to the second round. The Wildcats hosted the Ontario Christian Knights (20-4-2), Ambassador League Champion, in the second round and lost 2-0 to end their playoff run.
Congratulations to all eight of the girls soccer teams who made it to the playoffs and to the Great Oak Wolfpack who made it to the Semifinals!
A total of 266 teams were paired into seven single-elimination tournament brackets to compete in the 2011-12 CIF Southern Section-Ford Boys Soccer Championships, presented by Farmers. Only one of the eight Valley boys soccer teams who qualified made it to the Semi-Finals and now the Finals: Lakeside Lancers.
Division 5: (Top Seed: Cajon (9-1-4, 22-4-5), San Andreas League Champion)
OUT: Perris (16-6-0) #1 Sunbelt League defeated visiting Victor Valley (10-7-2) #3 Desert Sky League, 3-2 in round one. They hosted Carpinteria Warriors (15-6-1), Tri-Valley League Champion and advanced to the school’s first quarterfinal by beating the Warriors 3-1. Thursday the Wildcats traveled to San Bernardino to face the #1-seed Cajon Cowboys (22-4-5), San Andreas League Champion in the Quarterfinals round and lost 3-0.
IN: Lakeside Lancers (15-7-3) #2 Sunbelt League beat Colton (15-7-6), 2-0 on the road to earn their berth in the Finals! They play San Bernardino Cajon in the Championship on Friday or Saturday.
Colton led 1-0 at the half. Lakeside’s Jesus Herrera scored from 15 yards out after recovering his own direct kick rebound off the Colton wall. Ricky Ruiz later scored on a penalty kick. Goalkeeper Jose Chavez’ save on a penalty kick preserved the win for Lakeside.
This is the Lancers’ deepest foray into the playoffs. They defeated the visiting Mountain View Vikings of El Monte (13-4-5), #2 Mission Valley League, 1-0 to qualify for the CIF-SS Semi-Finals. Oscar Gonzales scored the only goal; Jesus Herrera got the assist. The Lancers opened playoffs by travelling to Carter (15-4-5) #2 San Andreas League, and came home with a win, 3-2. In the second round, they traveled to Paso Robles Bearcats (13-4-8), #3 PAC-7 League and brought home a 2-1 win in overtime.
Congratulations to all eight Valley teams who made it to the playoffs and good luck to Lakeside High! Championships will be presented by Farmers at either Mission Viejo or Warren High Schools on March 2-3.
Girls Water Polo
Of the six valley teams that qualified for the 2011-12 CIF Southern Section-Ford Girls Water Polo Championships, presented by Farmers, four were eliminated before the semifinals and the two who remained — Murrieta Valley, the Southwestern League Champion seeded #1 in Division 3 and Sunbelt League Champion, Temescal Canyon seeded #2 in Division 5 –came home with a State CIF Title! Congratulations!
Division 3: Champion #1 Seed Murrieta Valley Lady Nighthawks (21-6) repeated as CIF Southern Section Division III Champions by totally dominating Arroyo Grande Eagles (27-6), 12-3 at the William Woollett, Jr. Aquatics Center last Saturday, February 25th. This is their second back-to-back CIF title and their fourth in six years. They were ranked #1 all season. The Eagles had won three Division 4 titles; they moved up to Division 3 last year and lost to Murrieta Valley 11-4 in last year’s semifinals.
Nighthawks’ sophomore Maddie Sanchez scored five goals (2 assists) as the Eagles double-teamed team leader Paige Virgil (2 assists). Allie Ender and Kayla Fedler added two goals apiece; Megan Guerts, and Abby Goveia recorded one goal and one assist each. Virgil had one goal. Allie Coleman had two assists; Kelly Guerts had one. Goalkeeper Goveia also had ten saves. They held Arizona State-bound Eagles’ star Katie Sverchek to only one goal.
MVHS opened playoffs by blasting California (16-7) #3 Del Rio League, out of the water 20-6, in first-round action. They continued their dominant play through the playoffs, qualifying for finals by defeating #4-seed Whittier La Serna 15-7 in last Wednesday’s SemiFinals. Virgil had seven goals and Goveia had ten saves.
Division 5: Champion: #2 Seed Temescal Canyon (24-5) #1 Sunbelt League staged a dramatic comeback to secure their second consecutive CIF title by beating La Verne Bonita 12-11. Senior Dannielle Wenzel scored the winning goal in the last two seconds. The Titans came back from a 10-4 deficit in the second quarter. Ashtynn Nelson (3 goals), Melissa Woody (3 goals, 1 assist), Taylor Johnson (3 goals, 1 assist), Wenzel (2 goals), Sammi Murphy (1 goal, 2 assists), Sydnee Inman (1 assist) accounted for the Titans’ scoring. Goalkeeper Lina Medeiros had ten saves. Bonita’s Ambyr Stewart had 6 goals in the first half.
In the opening round, the Titans blew out visiting Glendale (10-10) #4 Pacific League, 19-2. Nelson and Johnson each scored five goals; Inman had three; Woody and Wenzel had two each. Goalkeeper Medeiros had nine saves.
The Titans then rolled over the Walnut Mustangs, 13-4 to advance to quarterfinals. Johnson (5), Murphy (3), Nelson (2), Woody (2) and Wenzel (1) contributed goals. Medeiros had eight saves.
In the Semi-Final round, Temescal Canyon eliminated undefeated Crescenta Valley , 9-7 to advance to the Finals. Nelson had four goals, Woody had three and an assist, Murphy had a goal, Wenzel had a goal and an assist, and Inman and Johnson both had assists.