Bay Area Baseball Top 25 Rankings

These are based on games played through April 19.

Previous week’s rankings are in parentheses.

1. (1) St. Francis 16-3

The Lancers advanced to the Northern California championship game of the Boras Classic but fell, 2-1, to last season’s Sac-Joaquin champion, Elk Grove. Before that defeat, the St. Francis pitching and defense recorded a 2-0 win over Yuba City, a 3-2 win over Pleasant Grove, and a 3-0 victory against Clovis West when John Gavin pitched a two-hitter and struck out 14.

2. (2) Archbishop Mitty 16-5

After falling to Oak Ridge, 2-1, the Monarchs went on to win three straight and take ninth place in the Boras Classic.

Mitty scored eight runs in each of the wins and Tommy Hudson had five hits in his last seven at bats, including four runs batted in.

3. (5) Valley Christian-San Jose 14-6

The Warriors impressively reached the championship game of the National Classic before a 3-2 loss to Huntington Beach in the final.

Ben Hughes pitched a two-hitter in a 4-0 win over Greenway-Arizona and Bryson Brigman was 6-for-14 in the four games.

4. (3) California 13-2

The Grizzlies avenged its first loss by overcoming a 4-0 hole in a 7-5 win versus Foothill as A.J. Velasquez hit his fourth homer of the season.

5. (4) De La Salle 13-4

The Spartans finished in seventh place of the Boras Classic after dropping a 1-0 contest to Pleasant Grove in its opening game.

The De La Salle bats came alive in a 11-0 win over Foothill-Palo Cedro and a 11-1 decision against Granite Bay. In the two games, Ben Polshuk went 5-for-6 with a couple of doubles and three runs batted in.

6. (6) Bellarmine 15-4 Continue reading

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Softball: The Santa Teresa and Standley Cup Tourneys Highlight the Week Ahead

With many schools enjoying spring break, there isn’t a heavy schedule of premier games.

There are, however, a couple of interesting tournaments.

The Santa Teresa Tournament begins with preliminary games on Friday and Saturday before the championship game and consolation contests on April 26.

This tourney features some of the top CCS teams, including four teams that are ranked among the top 16 in our Bay Area Rankings. Continue reading

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Bay Area Softball Rankings: April 16

Previous week’s rankings in parentheses

1. (1) Amador Valley 15-0

The Dons outscored Cal and Foothill by a combined 22-3 margin in the past week.

Ashley Lotosynski stopped a 0-for-13 spell with two hits versus Cal and a homer and five runs batted in against rival Foothill.

2. (2) Archbishop Mitty 17-0

The Monarchs have won 37 straight WCAL games after recording a nice 6-1 home win over Presentation on Tuesday. Desiree Severance struck out 10 and allowed just three hits.

3. (3) Alhambra 13-2

The Bulldogs won its 42nd straight league game with a 3-0 win over Dougherty Valley, who was 4-0 in league. Erin Enke struck out 13 and allowed just one hit.

4. (6) Carlmont 16-3

Rebecca Faulkner pitched a six-inning no-hitter and also had three hits of her own in a 12-0 win over Burlingame on Thursday.

5. (4) Granada 13-2

6. (7) Leland 12-3

The Chargers suffered a loss to Mt. Pleasant, a team it had beat twice, but recorded big wins over Pioneer and Soquel. Continue reading

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Boras Classic highlights an exciting week of baseball for Bay Area teams

There are no state or regional championships in baseball and there won’t be unless all of the fall and winter schedules move up so the spring schedule can be started a few weeks earlier. It’s simply too much to ask to play state baseball playoff games so long after graduation.

While it’s nearly impossible to pull off a midseason tournament that fairly includes all of the top teams in the state, the Boras Classic may be the closest thing that baseball fans can ask for regarding a California state championship.

The Boras Classic includes a 16-team Northern California bracket and a 16-team Southern California bracket. These brackets will be played out this week and then the North winner will play the South winner on May 3rd at Stockton’s University of Pacific in a nationally televised championship game. Continue reading

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Bay Area Baseball Top 25 Rankings

These are based on games played through April 12.

Previous week’s rankings are in parentheses.

1. (1) St. Francis 13-2

The Lancers have allowed one run or less in 11 of 15 games this season

In three wins last week, Blake Billinger was 5-for-9 with two doubles, a home run, and seven runs batted in.

In a 4-1 win over St. Ignatius, Tyler Deason allowed his first earned run of the season and now has a 0.21 earned run average.

St. Francis plays in the Boras Classic this week and opens with 9-4 Yuba City.

2. (2) Archbishop Mitty 13-4

After falling 1-0 at Bellarmine on Friday, the Monarchs play in the Boras Classic and open with 7-5 Oak Ridge on Tuesday.

3. (3) California 12-2

After a 5-3 loss at Amador Valley on Friday, Cal’s only two losses are to the Pleasanton schools.

The Grizzlies offense has a team .908 OPS and four regulars, Cameron Santos, Trent Kravitz, A.J. Velasquez, and Nick Allman, each have an OPS over a thousand.

4. (4) De La Salle 10-3

The Spartans play in the Boras Classic and open with Pleasant Grove on Monday. A win and De La Salle could get a rematch with St. Francis in the quarterfinals.

5. (5) Valley Christian-San Jose 11-5 Continue reading

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Top 10 Softball Games for the Week (April 9-15)

The top ten softball games of the next week (April 9-15) include many matchups involving ranked teams and teams that are unbeaten in league.

1. #5 Pioneer at #7 Leland, Wednesday 4

Both teams are 5-0 in the Mt. Hamilton and have lengthy winning streaks.

Pioneer, behind ace Holly Azevedo, has won 14 in a row and Leland, with ace Holly Geranen, has taken eight in a row.

Defending Mt. Hamilton champion Leland swept the season-series last season and has won three straight meetings.

 

2. #14 Valley Christian-San Jose at #19 Notre Dame-Belmont, Thursday 3:30

Notre Dame is alone in second in the West Catholic league and scored a 3-0, eight-inning win over the Warriors last month as Lindsey Milfud outdueled Brynne Fitzpatrick.

Despite the March defeat, Valley Christian has won nine of the past 11 meetings.

 

3. #17 Soquel at San Lorenzo Valley, Tuesday 4 Continue reading

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Bay Area Softball Rankings: April 9

These rankings are based on games played through April 8.

1. Amador Valley 13-0

Arizona State commit Johanna Grauer has not allowed an earned run (4 runs overall) in 93.1 innings over 13 starts. Grauer also has 144 strikeouts and pitched her team to the Michelle Carew Classic championship last week.

The Dons, who are ranked second in the country by MaxPreps, were represented well on the Carew Classic all-tournament team. Grauer was most valuable pitcher, Victoria Molina was most valuable player, and Sammy Salustri and Nicole Yozzo were on the all-tourney team.

2. Archbishop Mitty 15-0

The Monarchs, ranked fourth in the country by MaxPreps, are coming off a championship in the competitive Livermore Stampede and now have nine shutout wins behind ace Desiree Severance. The junior ace and Drexel commit is tied for first in the CCS with 11 wins while shortstop Jazmyn Jackson is hitting .605

3. Alhambra 12-2

The only losses for the Bulldogs are to Los Alamitos and Amador Valley and UCLA commit Kylee Perez has four homers and 17 runs batted in despite 12 walks. Fellow senior Hailey Sparacino is first in the NCS with 32 runs batted in and fourth in the section with five home runs.

Freshman Karlee Sparacino is second in the NCS with a .711 batting average.

4. Granada 12-1

The Matadors only loss was a 12-1 defeat to Mitty in the Stampede over the weekend but Granada already has six wins against EBAL opponents.

5. Pioneer 14-2

Since opening with losses to Mitty and Wilcox, Pioneer has won 14 straight games, including a good 7-0 win over Carlmont on Saturday in the Wilcox tournament. Freshman Holly Azevedo is 9-1 with a 1.07 earned run average, which is eighth in the CCS. Continue reading

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Bay Area Baseball Top 25 Rankings

It’s another difficult week to do rankings as Mitty beat St. Francis, 2-1, but also dropped its third game of the season with a defeat to Valley Christian.

We kept St. Francis in the top spot because its non-conference resume is better than the Monarchs, who have a slight edge in West Catholic league games played.

These are based on games played through April 5.

Previous week’s rankings are in parentheses.

1. (1) St. Francis 10-2

The Lancers have a chance to avenge its first loss this week when it hosts St. Ignatius on Tuesday. It appears that Tyler Deason will get the start in that game after allowing four unearned runs in the 5-2 loss to SI last month.

2. (2) Archbishop Mitty 11-3

Junior Kris Bubic went six innings and struck out five in the 2-1 win over St. Francis. Bubic has struck out 46 in 32.2 innings with a 0.86 earned run average and, offensively, has hits in nine of his last 10 games.

3. (3) California 10-1

4. (4) De La Salle 8-2

De La Salle exacted some revenge with a 4-3 win over Amador Valley, the team that beat the Spartans three times last season, including the NCS championship. Cameron Schneider, a 6-foot-6 junior, has now picked up two league wins in relief.

The Spartans have a challenging week with Monte Vista, San Ramon Valley, and Granada on the schedule.

5. (5) Valley Christian-San Jose 9-4

Theron Kay pitched a no-hitter in a 5-0 win over Mitty and the Warriors now have six shutouts this season, three by Kay.

On Tuesday, Kay will pitch against Bellarmine for the fifth time over the last three seasons.

6. (8) Bellarmine 11-3

The Bells followed a three-game losing streak with three straight wins but play Valley Christian and Mitty this week. Continue reading

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Top Bay Area Boys Basketball Teams for 2014-2015

When it comes to high school boys basketball, it can be pretty foolish to do a rankings of the top teams for next year after the previous season just completed.

Mostly, we don’t know much about the incoming freshmen or who the top transfers will be.

This time last season, we didn’t know Archbishop Mitty would have 6-foot-8 sophomore Ben Kone for this season.

We knew Monte Vista would be very good but nobody could have predicted 32-1 good at this time a year ago.

Nonetheless, we take our shot at who we think are the top 12 Bay Area teams for the 2014-2015 season.

 

1. Bishop O’Dowd

With Ivan Rabb and Paris Austin returning for their senior seasons, this is a no-brainer. Franklin Longrus can help matters by showing great improvement next season and it sounds like 6-foot-8 Isaiah Thomas will be eligible after sitting out this season because of a transfer.

2. Moreau Catholic Continue reading

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State Championship Notebook: The South teams are getting even better, the year of the blowout, and other notes

Southern California normally does very well in the state finals so this weekend’s 10-4 mark against Northern California is not a huge surprise.

However, with the new CIF Southern Section Open Division, it appears that Southern California teams have another reason to be even more dangerous in late March.

In the 16-team Open Division, each Southern Section qualified boys team played four games against top-notch competition. This level of play isn’t all that much different than what we see in the regional Open Division playoffs.

“We played four really quality teams,” said Bishop Montgomery coach Doug Mitchell after his team dominated Moreau Catholic, 85-44, in the Division IV state title game. “I thought that experience made a good team even better. The Open Division worked out well for us.”

Four boys state champions and four girls state champions all come from the Southern Section’s Open Division and all felt that competition made them better basketball teams when faced with regional competition. Continue reading

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