By Mark Tennis
Contributing: Harold Abend, Paul Muyskens
Top-ranked girls basketball teams by division heading into the third week of February and the start of playoffs in almost all sections of the state are Mater Dei (D1), Carondelet (D2), Bishop O’Dowd of Oakland (D3), Windward of Los Angeles (D4) and Brookside Christian of Stockton (D5).
All teams have been ranked according to their CIF divisions, but some will obviously be pulled up into the new CIF Open Division for the Northern California and Southern California regional playoffs. We have indicated which teams in which divisions are eligible for the Open Division so readers can then visualize which non-Open Division teams may end up battling it out for the various CIF divisional state titles.
Of the top-ranked teams this week, Mater Dei, Carondelet, Bishop O’Dowd and Windward all look like they’ll be in the open division.
Teams throughout the state also can petition the CIF to be considered for the open division once they have qualified for the regional playoffs. This likely isn’t going to happen, though, for any team that is outside top 10 overall in the state.
(After results of Saturday, Feb. 9 with some scores from early this week indicated)
1. (1) Mater Dei (Santa Ana) 25-0
2. (2) St. Mary’s (Stockton) 24-2
3. (3) Santiago (Corona) 24-2
4. (4) Troy (Fullerton) 22-3
5. (5) Long Beach Poly (Long Beach) 23-4
6. (7) Etiwanda 24-2
7. (6) Millikan (Long Beach) 23-2
8. (8) Rancho Verde (Moreno Valley) 23-2
9. (10) Hanford 21-4
10. (9) Heritage (Brentwood) 17-5
11. (11) Centennial (Corona) 21-4
12. (12) Oak Ridge (El Dorado Hills) 21-3*
13. (13) Vista Murrieta (Murrieta) 22-5
14. (NR) Wilcox (Santa Clara) 20-2
15. (NR) Canyon Springs (Moreno Valley) 15-9
Dropped Out: Previous No. 14 Brea Olinda (Brea), No. 15 Kennedy (Sacramento).
Eligible for Open Division: Mater Dei, Stockton St. Mary’s, Long Beach Poly, Berkeley, Brea Olinda, Hanford, Sacramento Kennedy, Harbor City Narbonne.
Teams on the Bubble: A.B. Miller (Fontana) 21-4, Berkeley 14-10, Bishop Amat (La Puente) 19-8, Brea Olinda (Brea) 18-6, Clovis West (Fresno) 18-5, Deer Valley (Antioch) 14-9, Granite Hills (El Cajon) 21-5, Kennedy (Sacramento) 20-5, McClymonds (Oakland) 20-3, Narbonne (Harbor City) 18-8, Stockdale (Bakersfield) 20-4.
Notes & Highlights: In the past two weeks, Wilcox of Santa Clara has avenged both of its losses and could be a team to watch in Northern California. The Chargers avenged their loss to Palo Alto last week after doing it to Lynbrook of San Jose the previous week. They are led by 6-foot-2 junior Joeseta Fatuesi, who was the State Freshman of the Year two seasons ago at Presentation of San Jose. This week’s other newcomer, Canyon Springs, may have nine losses but the girls were an easy choice to move up because of owning head-to-head wins over other bubble teams Clovis West and Narbonne. Coach Gail Hale’s squad also has a quality win against D4 state-ranked St. Bernard of Playa del Rey.
1. (1) Carondelet (Concord) 21-3
2. (2) Archbishop Mitty (San Jose) 18-6
3. (3) Ridgeview (Bakersfield) 21-3
4. (4) Cajon (San Bernardino) 25-0
5. (5) Lynwood 18-5
6. (6) Sacramento 22-4
7. (7) Mark Keppel (Alhambra) 23-4
8. (8) J.W. North (Riverside) 17-5
9. (10) Woodbridge (Irvine) 24-3
10. (NR) Canyon (Canyon Country) 22-4
Dropped Out: Previous No. 9 McNair (Stockton).
Eligible for Open Division: Archbishop Mitty, Carondelet, Lynwood, Sacramento.
Teams on the Bubble: Bonita (La Verne) 22-5, Clayton Valley (Concord) 18-6, Garces (Bakersfield) 23-2, Gregori (Modesto) 23-1, Lynbrook (San Jose) 19-4, Lutheran (Orange) 21-5, McNair (Stockton) 24-3, Murrieta Valley (Murrieta) 21-5, Patriot (Riverside) 23-3, Serra (San Diego) 19-6, St. Francis (Mountain View) 18-6.
Notes & Highlights: The only change in this division for this week was to drop McNair of Stockton and move up Canyon of Canyon Country. McNair’s loss was to national powerhouse St. Mary’s of Stockton but the margin of defeat (95-57) was enough to cause the shift. Canyon also had a big win of 52-45 over Valencia to avenge an earlier loss. In addition, the Cowgirls have some quality wins on their ledger, such as those over Stockdale of Bakersfield, Sierra Canyon of Chatsworth and St. Bernard of Playa del Rey. There could be some bigger changes next week if No. 2 Archbishop Mitty does not win the West Catholic Athletic League playoff title and gets to seven losses overall.
1. (1) Bishop O’Dowd (Oakland) 21-3
2. (3) Miramonte (Orinda) 24-1
3. (2) Chaminade (West Hills) 23-3
4. (4) Alemany (Mission Hills) 22-5
5. (5) Sacred Heart Cathedral (San Francisco) 19-4
6. (6) St. Ignatius (San Francisco) 17-7
7. (7) Campolindo (Moraga) 20-4
8. (8) Enterprise (Redding) 23-1
9. (9) Jurupa Valley 25-1
10. (10) Santa Barbara 20-7
Dropped Out: None.
Eligible for Open Division: Bishop O’Dowd, Sacred Heart Cathedral, Laguna Hills. Note: Miramonte also has been told by CIF North Coast Section officials that it also will be eligible for the open division in the north.
Teams on the Bubble: Burlingame 21-2, Christian Brothers (Sacramento) 19-7, El Dorado (Placentia) 22-4, Laguna Hills 19-7, Lakeside (Lake Elsinore) 22-4, Oak Park (Agoura Hills) 17-9, Patterson 22-2, Selma 26-1, Sonora (La Habra) 20-6, Vanden (Travis AFB) 23-3.
Notes & Highlights: There sure is a lot of concern among long-time prep followers in the Bay Area about Miramonte of Orinda having to play in the open division in the north for the regional level of the playoffs. While we’re still unclear completely how the Matadors meet the criteria (almost every other team is obvious), it can’t help their cause to remain in Division III by moving up right behind Bishop O’Dowd to the No. 2 spot in this week’s divisional rankings. Other than Chaminade losing to Alemany in a rematch, no other top 10 teams from last week suffered a defeat so there were no other changes.
1. (1) Windward (Los Angeles) 25-0
2. (2) St. Mary’s (Berkeley) 22-4
3. (3) Salesian (Richmond) 21-5
4. (4) JSerra (San Juan Capistrano) 20-6
5. (8) Serra (Gardena) 21-5
6. (5) Oaks Christian (Westlake Village) 19-6
7. (7) La Jolla Country Day (La Jolla) 12-11
8. (6) St. Bernard (Playa del Rey) 22-7
9. (9) Mater Dei Catholic (Chula Vista) 17-5
10. (10) Bradshaw Christian (Sacramento) 22-2
Dropped Out: None.
Eligible for Open Division: Windward, Berkeley St. Mary’s, La Jolla Country Day, Gardena Serra, Salesian.
Teams on the Bubble: Argonaut (Sutter Creek) 26-0, Bear River (Lake of the Pines) 23-3, Bishop Montgomery (Torrance) 20-7, Bishop’s (La Jolla) 17-10, Monte Vista Christian (Watsonville) 20-3, Piedmont 18-6, Ripon 22-4, Soquel 22-2, St. Anthony (Long Beach) 15-10, St. Paul (Santa Fe Springs) 16-11.
Notes & Highlights: Serra of Gardena reversed an earlier 78-76 loss to St. Bernard of Playa del Rey with a 56-45 triumph last week. The Cavaliers were thus moved back up to No. 5 in these rankings, which also is because they have a head-to-head win over Oaks Christian. La Jolla Country Day also has a win over Oaks Christian and beat D5 No. 2 Horizon last week, but we decided to wait for further playoff results (especially in the tough CIFSS Division IV-AA bracket) before switching back those teams. The unfortunate reality for the Torreys is that despite their 11 losses they will probably win another San Diego Section D4 title and then get moved up into the open division in the south where they might have to play a Mater Dei or Windward in the first round.
1. (1) Brookside Christian (Stockton) 22-4
2. (2) Horizon (San Diego) 18-7
3. (4) Sierra Canyon (Chatsworth) 17-9
4. (3) Eastside College Prep (E. Palo Alto) 18-6
5. (6) Valley Christian (Dublin) 24-2
6. (5) Pinewood (Los Altos Hills) 19-5
7. (7) Mesa Grande Academy (Calimesa) 23-3
8. (8) Desert (Edwards) 19-1
9. (9) Ripon Christian (Ripon) 19-6
10. (10) Turlock Christian 23-4
Dropped Out: None.
Eligible for Open Division: Brookside Christian.
Teams on the Bubble: Animo South (Los Angeles) 22-5, Central Catholic (Modesto) 15-7, International (San Francisco) 23-3, Loma Linda Academy (Loma Linda) 23-3, Providence (Burbank) 16-9, Urban (San Francisco) 20-5.
Notes & Highlights: A switch was made for the No. 3 and No. 4 positions in this division based on Eastside College Prep taking a 66-48 loss last week to D4-ranked St. Mary’s of Berkeley. St. Mary’s only beat Sierra Canyon 40-36 from the week before. It was less clear between Valley Christian of Dublin and Pinewood in their switch, but since it was close (VC has a 20-point loss to San Francisco Lowell compared to 17 for Pinewood) we just went ahead with it for this week. VC probably would get a higher regional playoff seed as the CIF North Coast Section champion anyway (unless Pinewood gets a win over Eastside College Prep in a future matchup, which has happened many times in the past).
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