Hacienda League: Walnut Doubles Up

The Hacienda League Final followed the form from the previous league meets Tuesday, when they competed again on the rolling 3-mile course at Bonelli Park.

2018 Hacienda League Finals Results

Chloe Arriaga – Hacienda League Champ

Walnut were the easy winners in the earlier league girls races, with West Covina & South Hills two and three, and they followed that order again. The Mustangs were missing one of their usual first four, but they still took the first four places to finish with just 17 points.

Chloe Arriaga won her 4th Hacienda Championship in 19:06, followed by Emma Arriaga – 2nd/19:10, Amanda Ghibaudo – 3rd /19:39 and in a nice step-up, Milo Santiago – 4th/20:27. Karla Galvan also stepped up to close out the scoring at 7th/21:01.

Girls First Team Varsity: Chloe Arriaga, Emma Arriaga, Amanda Ghibaudo, Milo Santiago, Arissa Hatcher, Kaylee Sanchez, Karla Galvan and Alyssa Ruiz

South Hills Arissa Hatcher – 5th/20:36 and Los Altos Kaylee Sanchez – 6th/20:56 took the remaining two All-League spots to break up the Mustangs. Arissa’s Huskies were 3rd, which was enough to hold off the Conqs. West Covina was second on the strength of their relatively close 1-5 grouping. Their best was Alyssa Ruiz – 8th/21:07.

Diamond Ranch edged out Charter Oak in the final two spots, and were led by Alyssa Blanco – 12th/22:18 and Guadalupe Perez – 22nd/24:17, respectively

On the Boys side, Walnut had won both previous races Mustangs also won the earlier boys races, while South Hills and Los Altos had traded the second spot.  Walnut were again the winners, while the Conquerors regained second place on a six-man tie-breaker with the Huskies.

Hacienda Champ Devin Hightower

South Hills senior Devin Hightower finished the league season undefeated in 16:15, followed to the line as he was in the earlier races by Walnut’s Jesse Alvarado - 2nd/16:29, and brother Dillon Hightower - 3rd/16:39 in a race where the leaders were quite a bit spread out.

Boys Varsity First Team: Dillon Hightower, Jesse Alvarado, Devin Hightower, Luke Francis, Chris Razo, Conner Parker, Fernando Padilla and Robert Arriaga

Los Altos was led by a 4 & 7 finish from Luke Francis (16:48) and Fernando Padilla (17:17), with the remaining All-League Spots going to Walnut’s Chris Razo 5th/17:09 and Diamond Ranch’s Conner Parker – 6th/17:17, who will advance to CIF as an individual.

West Covina finished fourth, led by Francisco Murillo – 11th/17:41, Diamond Ranch was fifth, and Julian Mireles - 26th/18:57 led Charter Oak.

Photos of the Varsity 2nd-Teams, and Top 10’s of the JV and Frosh/Soph races after the jump.

Continue reading Hacienda League: Walnut Doubles Up

Mission Valley Final: Arroyo Has Two Big Wins

Arroyo has been moving from strength to strength this season. They had a strong group of returners on both the boys and girls teams, and both teams have been helped by the seasonal rise of young runners, and they closed the deal Tuesday in the Mission Valley Finals at Legg Lake in South El Monte.

Complete Results

MVL Champ Noah Hibbard (second from left) leads the Varsity Boys off the line.The boys, led by an easy 15:10 win Noah Hibbard, hit the perfect 15 they’ve been chasing all year. Rosemead was second, led by Fausto Reyna – 8th/16:40. Gabrielino was third again, led as they have been all year by soph Nicolas DiConti, who after breaking up Arroyo in the first meet slipped to 6th/16:25.

Next to the line was Carlos Martinez of El Monte at 7th/16:30, capping a big seasonal rise after finishing 15th at the first MVL meet, and he led the Lions to the fourth and final CIF qualifying spot in this seven team league.

The remaining three places were South El Monte, led by David Aguilar – 9th/16:43, Marshall led by Claudio Reynoso – 23rd/17:44 and Robinson Kao was up front for Mountain View - 42nd/21:43.

MVL Champ Melanie Mach (third from right) leads out the front group early in the race.

The Arroyo girls faced a stiffer challenge from CIF Div. 3 ranked Rosemead. The Panthers Melanie Mach added on more win to her extraordinary senior year with a big 18:37, and was helped by an excellent 4th/19:12 finish by senior Cassandra Chin. The Panthers narrowed their margin from the 2nd cluster meet, but that wasn’t enough to hold off the Knights, who put their scoring five in the first nine.

Arroyo was led by four girls in the All-League spots, Mollie Hake – 2nd/18:50, Amelia Rivas – 3rd/19:10, Kelly Luna-Flores – 4th/19:13 and Karina Felix – 6th/19:21, resulting in a strong defense of their title.

Frosh Kristen Song of Gabrielino grabbed the final All-League place in 7th/19:27, moving up from 11th and 9th in the first two meets, and her team was fourth, taking the final CIF spot. A young (four of five scorers were frosh or sophs) South El Monte was third, led by Karla Ortega – 12th/20:20.

The remaining teams were El Monte, led by Arai Medina - 25th/22:02, Marshall – their best was Candace Fisher – 24th/21:56, and Jarethzy Roman – 30th/22:43 was best for Mountain View.

Great thanks to Gabrielino parent Andy DiConti for the photos.

Suburban Final: La Mirada are 2 x Champs

Natalia Zuniga at the Apache Invite

La Mirada is the only SGV team in the four school Suburban League, and they claimed both league championships Tuesday at La Mirada Park.

Complete Results

The boys had a comfortable 39-51 edge, and Christian Santiago closed out this part of his senior year with a15:55 win for the championship. He was joined in all-league honors by soph Rainier Villanueva, who moved up from 11th & 12th in the first two league meets to finish 5th/16:47.

The girls had an even stronger team effort, putting their first five in the top ten and three in the first seven: Mia Gutierrez – 2nd/19:55, Kayla Zendejas - 4th/20:18, & impressive 5th/20:20 from frosh Natalia Zuniga, moving up from 15th & 10th in the cluster meets.

Baseline Finals: Damien Disappointed While Ebiner Moves On

Damien and St. Lucy’s are the only SGV schools in the Baseline League, and the only Div. 3 & Div. 4 schools, respectively in the a league of Div. 1 schools. So they faced an uphill battle all year.

Coming into the final Tuesday at Central Park in Rancho Cucamonga, the SGV #10 Spartans were fourth, and needed a top three finish to advance, since they’d (inexplicably?) fallen out of the Div. 3 rankings.

Injuries limited the Spartans chances, and they finished fourth (and nearly 5th).  Their one bright spot was soph Danny Ebiner, who finished 6th/15:59 and will advance to CIF individually. Damien’s best races had come when they finished fairly close together, but with one runner out and another hobbled, they were too spread out to get the score they needed.

The Regals were fifth coming in to the meet, and finished there again, while frosh Sarah Gann capped her rapid seasonal ascent with a 5th place finish in 18:47, earning an individual CIF spot.

Horizon League: Ramona Convent & Alverno Advance

The six small prep schools of the Horizon League held their Finals at the Cornfield in Los Angeles on Tuesday. This was the sixth (!) meet the league held this season, and this one followed the same order as the first five.

Full Results

LA’s Sacred Heart of Jesus won, as they had in all of the meets, and CIF ranked Ramona Convent finished second again in the closest finish of the year. Two Tigers made All-League – frosh Emily Silva – 5th/20:37 for 5000m and soph Isabelle Mix-Vachon – 6th/21:00

Alverno was once again third, and they will also advance to CIF from this six-team league. Their best was Katie Maruna – 15th/22:35. San Gabriel Mission was sixth, and their best was senior Ashley De La Cruz – 25th/24:29

Camino Del Rey Association: Amat & Bosco Tech Move On

The three league Catholic school Camino Del Rey Association held their finals Tuesday at Santa Fe Dam in Irwindale.  The Bishop Amat girls finished their season-long lead of the Del Rey League, while the boys return of Bosco Tech to CIF with the big news on the boys side.

Senior Olivia Paez scored a huge victory leading the Lancers, winning by nearly a minute in 17:29 on the flat 3-mile course. Frosh Janelle Santos continued her rapid rise, finishing 4th/18:46 as Amat put their scoring five in the first eight. This was a strong effort, but it was also the first time their first four was broken up the other teams.

St. Paul had moved from fifth to second in the second cluster meet, and had high hopes of advancing. They finished a disappointing fourth, so their season ends here, except for senior Reagan Lucero. Reagan completed her season-long rise up the Del Rey league, finishing 13th in the first meet, 8th in the second, and a CIF-qualifying 6th in 19:01.

Newly promoted Pomona Catholic struggled all year in the higher Del Rey and finished fifth. They were led by junior Brooke Burciaga at 11th/19:43, her best finish of the year.

On the boys side Bishop Amat were second, as expected, led by two excellent efforts from Isaiah Hernandez – 2nd/15:15 and James Leon – 4th/15:26. Don Bosco, traditionally one of the SGV’s best Div. 4 schools, was a solid third and will return to CIF for the fist time since 2014. They were led by Aaron Dominguez who was 8th/15:33 in this very competitive race, and they sealed the deal with a tight grouping of their 2-5 runners.

La Salle was fourth and St. Paul fell to fifth and will not advance. The Lancers were led by Daniel Piesik - 13th/16:01 and the Swordsmen by Owen Lozano – 7th/15:32, who heartbreakingly missed earning a individual CIF spot by 3/10th’s of a second.

In the middle level Camino Real League, the La Salle girls secured a CIF spot with a second place finish in this four team league. In a race where the teams ran mostly in groups, the Lancers earned their spot with a 5-6-7-8 finish led by Margaret O’Hagan – 6th/22:25 and Michelle Algiers – 7th/22:32. Cantwell Sacred Heart were a non-advancing third, and were led by Rivera Ciclari – 11th/24:03.

The CSH boys compete in the third level Santa Fe league. They were fifth in this five team league, but  just missed advancing to CIF by 5 points. Their top finisher was Josue Banuelos – 17th/21:25


CIF Rankings – Week 9: Six More Schools Punch Their Ticket

This was the third week of the CIF Southern Section Rankings expanding to 16, and the San Gabriel Valley increased its share in the rankings from 26 teams to 27.

Close readers will remember that we listed 25 SGV teams in the CIF rankings last week. It was actually 26 – we missed Ramona Convent‘s first week in the Div. 5 rankings (Sorry, Tigers!). This week, the South Pasadena girls enter the Div. 4 rankings for the first time this week at #7, probably due to an oversight by the CIF rankers.

Six schools clinched a CIF spot by earning their second ranking in the expanded polls – Flintridge Sacred Heart (D4), Vivian Webb (D5) & Ramona Convent on the girls side, and South Hills (D3), Pioneer (D4) and Maranatha (D5) on the boys.

The Bonita girls were the first team to officially advance via the rankings when they finished fourth in the Palomares League.

Four of the SGV Girls Top Ten were unranked: #4 Glendora, #5 California, #9 Arcadia & #10 Arroyo, while #8 Rowland, #9 Glendora and #10 Damien are unranked among the boys. Glendora finished 6th in both races in the Palomares Final, so their season is over. Damien is the only team unranked in CIF that is likely to need an at-large spot to advance..

You can view the entire rankings here

San Gabriel Valley Girls

*=Clinched At-Large CIF berth.

Div 1 – #6 – # Walnut* (Same as last week)

Div 2 – #1 - Claremont* (Same)

Div. 3 – #8 Bonita* (Same); #12 Rosemead* (13th)

Div. 4 – #5 – Bishop Amat* (Same); #7 South Pasadena (Unranked); #8 Mayfield* (7th); #10 Flintridge Sacred Heart* (10th) #11 -  La Cañada* (11th)

Div. 5 – #2 – #5 CA Flintridge Prep* (Same); #6 Poly* (7th); #12 Webb* (12th); #13 Ramona Convent* (13th)


San Gabriel Valley Boys

Div 1 - #6= - La Serna* (#6); #6= Arcadia* (7th); #14 California* (Same)

Div. 2 - #2= - Claremont* (1st); 9th Arroyo* (Same)

Div. 3 – #10 Bonita* (Same); 12th Whittier* (Same); 16th South Hills* (Same)

Div. 4 – #4 – South Pasadena* (Same); #10 Pioneer* (Same) #12 Bishop Amat* (Same); #15 La Canada* (Same)

Div. 5 – #3 - Flintridge Prep* (Same); #12 Maranatha (11th)


Prep Final: Flintridge Prep Wins Both

Flintridge Prep has been one of the top Div. 5 programs in California this decade, especially the girls team, who are five-time CIF and four-time defending State champs. But in the Prep League, they’ve traded championships with Div. 4 Mayfield. This year, the Rebels stepped up to win the championship, contested on the tough, hilly 2.96-mile course at Pierce College.

Full Results

Mayfield won the Prep Cluster meet in September, but FP was missing key senior Sasha Codiga. Both teams were at full strength today, and Sasha was the difference as FP edged Mayfield 41-43. Mayfield soph Audrey Suarez, the 2018 champ, defended with a 18:38 win. FP senior Haley Allen was 2nd in 18:47, Sasha was 3rd/19:06, and the Cubs Emma Cadena was 4th/1923.

Poly just edged out Chadwick, 67-70  with two in the first seven - Sophie Phinney 5th/19:26 and Alessia Checcone 7th/19:37 – and they will get the third CIF spot.  Westridge was 5th, led by frosh Jazlyn Gutierrez at 20th/21:56.

In the boys race, Flintridge Prep defended with a clear win at 25 points, while senior Carson Hasbrouck moved up from 3rd last year to claim the championship with a 15:57 win. He was joined in the first 7 by teammates  Bennett Oakes 4th/16:18, Hudson Billock 6th/17:04, and Ethan Moutes 7th/17:26.

The Prep League has only four boys teams, and Poly faced a stiff challenge to bump Chadwick out of the second and final CIF spot. They cut the gap from the cluster meet, but still fell short. Evan Hayes led the Panthers by finishing 5th/17:01 and he’ll advance to CIF as an individual.

Palomares Final: Claremont Doubles Up, Bonita Moves On, Glendora Does Not

SGV #1 Claremont turned in two easy wins at Saturday’s Palomares League Final, run over a fairly fast and flat 3-mile course at Legg Lake in South El Monte. Both Wolfpack teams scored 25 points to win comfortably over CIF-ranked Ayala. Bonita, which already held boys and girls at-large qualification spots through the CIF rankings, was third in the boys race and fifth in the girls. Glendora, SGV #4 for girls and #9 for the boys, needed a third place to advance to CIF, but both teams were a disappointing sixth.

Live Results

In the boys race, Claremont ran together at the front, perhaps conceding the individual win to Andrew Martinez of Ayala in 14:47. Senior Ryan Cowgill was next at 14:55, and the Wolfpack’s next four scorers - Aaron Reyes (Sr), Adam Trafecanty (Jr), Jacob Moran (Sr) & Jack Keough-Lansford (So) finished 4-7 and within 9 seconds, while putting their whole team of 7 in the first 11.

Soph Daniel Echeveste (13th/15:28)led Bonita to a very nice third place finish. It’s hard to finish well when you’re #1 is that far back, but the Bearcats next three finished with the next five spots & 15 seconds, which helped them overcome their #5 being further back than usual.

Glendora also had a tight 1-5 grouping but they were too far back to factor in the scoring. Their best was a very strong performance  from their usual #4 Nicholas Vega at 15:50, but he was only 21st (and behind the first four for Bonita) nixing the Tartans chance to advance.

The Claremont girls also ran grouped up near the front. Frosh Maddie Coles went forward to challenge Ayala’s Mikaela Ramirez for the win, coming up a bit short to finish 2nd in 17:11. The Wolfpack finished their scoring with a 4-5-6-8 finish by Sydney Hwang (17:20), Azalea Segura Mora (17:34), Kalinda Reynolds (17:35) & Julia Marriott (17:54).

Junior Lorelei Claxton was up front for Bonita, as she has been all year, and ran a strong 18:04 for 10th place. The rest of the Bearcats ran well, but the strength of the league pushed them back to 5th. They will advance to CIF through their CIF Div. 3 ranking.

Glendora came into the meet ranked ahead of Bonita but is unranked in CIF Div. 1, so they needed a top 3 finish to advance. Their strong performance last week at Riverside made that a real possibility, but the Tartans did not quite reach that level here and finished sixth.  Tops for the team was senior Avery Kuehfuss who closed out her XC career with near life-time best performance of 19:21.

Apache Invite: Mach, Paez & the Pioneer Boys are the Best

The Apache Invitational, the final invite of the season went off over the fast 3-mile course at Arcadia Park on a warm Friday afternoon and evening.

Full Results

Eighty-five schools, including 26 from the SGV took part. But with League Finals Championship meets just days away, almost all of the schools entered partial or B-varsity teams.

The exception was the SGV #11 Pioneer boys. Fresh off a strong effort at Mt.SAC, the Titans were second here in the Small Schools Sweepstakes. Junior Nathaniel Estrada ran 15:22 and was just out-leaned for the win. Teammate Sergio Martin was 4th in 15:30 and they were the SGV’s two best on the day.

The La Mirada Boys – Winners of the Varsity – Small Schools Race

Also notable among the boys, in the Varsity -Small-Schools race, Pasadena super-frosh Isaiah Givens won the in 15:36, an excellent time in the heat. La Mirada were the winners with what looks like their full team, and they were led by senior Christian Santiago who was 2nd/15:39.

In the girls races, Rosemead senior Melanie Mach had a big life-time best in the Small Schools Sweeps to finish 2nd/17:45, just ahead of Olivia Paez (Sr, Bishop Amat) 3rd/17:47 – which was her best result since her sophomore year. Melanie’s performance was matched by her teammates when they won the regular Small Schools Varsity Race without her – setting up the Panthers to make a strong run at Arroyo at next week’s Mission Valley League Meet.

A mostly full strength La Serna was 3rd in the Large School Varsity race, led by soph Remi Vigil at 15th/19:07.

SGV Top 10 Performers Lists After the Jump Continue reading Apache Invite: Mach, Paez & the Pioneer Boys are the Best