Categoria: High School All Sports

LAUSD Strike, Rain And Lack Of Officials Impacting City Section High School Athletics

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Los Angeles Unified School District schools were closed Tuesday, the first day of a three-day strike led by SEIU Local 99, the service worker union representing around 30,000 bus drivers, cafeteria workers, custodians and special education assistants. Members of the teachers union, United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA), walked out in solidarity, too.

No school means no sports, so the strike will heavily impact high school athletics this week.

Many high school coaches are also on-campus teachers who will participate in the strike, which means sports like baseball, softball, boys volleyball and track and field can’t practice or participate in competition without their coach.

Christian Carbajal, a physical education teacher and softball coach at Kennedy High in Granada Hills, was out in the rain at 6:30 a.m. Tureday picketing with her colleagues. Despite knowing she won’t be with her team for the next three days, she made sure to make the stretch a teachable moment.

“Anytime you have an opportunity to stand up for something bigger than yourself, you make it happen,” Carbajal said. “It was cold, but I told the team why I was doing it, and I hope they see that having a voice is important.”

At a quick glance, it’s easy to see why practices and games can’t be carried out while the strike is ongoing, but the weather adds an extra layer of challenges. As the rain continues to pour, baseball and softball coaches have no choice but to hope their respective fields aren’t getting ruined beyond return. If a coach goes onto campus to perform maintenance on their field, it would be considered crossing the picket line.

“There are people on the inside (still on campus) that can help. I offered to take them to dinner if they can drag the field,” Carbajal said laughing. “I’ve already had to reschedule nine games this season, we have to play Friday’s game.”

Local charter schools like Birmingham, Granada Hills and El Camino Real do not fall underneath the footprint of LAUSD, which will allow its spring sports to continue as usual. The charter schools can practice and compete against each other, but if an LAUSD school is scheduled this week, the game will have to be rescheduled. It’s likely any outdoor competition would’ve been canceled anyway due to rain, which Cleveland baseball coach Peter Gunny believes can somewhat even the playing field.

“The rain won’t allow any team to practice or play, so that evens the playing field a bit,” Gunny said. “We play Granada Hills Friday, and the rain is expected to stop Thursday, so they’ll likely get to practice Thursday before the game. We’ll have to play the game with one practice this week, which was Monday.”

Gunny is a physical education teacher at Cleveland and the son of two longtime LAUSD teachers and coaches. Gunny’s mother, Carolyn, is in her 53rd year at Granada Hills and his father, Edmound, was at Taft for 39 years.

“My mother was part of a strike back in the late 1980’s, I think,” Gunny said. “I know she made the decision to strike thinking about our family and I’m doing the same now.”

Grant High athletics director Jon Manocchio says the strike adds a third layer of challenges in his eyes.

“The rain has been one thing, but the other issue for us has been getting officials for the games,” he said. “I’ve had to switch boys volleyball and junior varsity baseball games numerous times already. One assigner told us to have coaches umpire a baseball game.”

“This is just going to back us up more,” Manocchio added.

Grant has yet to have a track meet this spring due to the weather and is still waiting to play its first home game on its new baseball field, which was part of a $170,000 construction project. Since the project has concluded and the grass has been laid down, the baseball team has yet to play a game because of the rain.

“The kids can’t wait. You should see it, it looks like Augusta,” Manocchio said. “But we can’t play on it.”

The strike will delay any baseball games on campus for a bit longer.

Live High School Updates: CIF State Basketball Finals On Saturday

The high school playoffs conclude today with six CIF State basketball championship games.

Follow along today, Saturday, March 11, for live updates from Southern California News Group reporters who will have scores, stats, video and much more from the sidelines for the boys and girls basketball finals.

Game schedule and TV information for all of the games.

A Twitter List by JHWreporter

James H. Williams | Assistant Sports Editor – Digital James H. Williams joined the Southern California News Group in 2013 with a passion for sports, social media and journalism that has led to his role as an Assistant Sports Editor with an emphasis on digital content. When covering a local sporting event, he can be found roaming the sidelines and at the snack bar during halftime. Williams also covers the UCLA football team (since 2019), esports and other entertainment-related events for the group.

Daily News Girls Athlete Of The Week: Alexis Nguyen, Hart

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School: Hart

Sport: Soccer

Year: Senior

Noteworthy: Nguyen anchored the Hart girls soccer team to a CIF State Division II SoCal Regional crown, scoring a hat-trick in the team’s 4-2 win over San Marcos Saturday afternoon. Nguyen scored two of the three goals in the first half.

“I’ve coached Charlotte for eight years,” coach Brett Croft said. “She’s just somebody that was a consummate team player that always worked hard.”

Hart girls soccer achieves championship trifecta by winning regional title

Tarek Fattal | Sportswriter Tarek was born and raised in the San Fernando Valley, a community he now serves as a sportswriter for the LA Daily News covering high school sports since 2015. Tarek also covers the UCLA men’s basketball team for the Southern California News Group and can be seen on CBS Los Angeles on weekends serving as co-host/sports analyst with TV legend Jim Hill.

Los Osos Girls Basketball Overcomes Slow Start, Pulls Away In Division 3AA Quarterfinal

RANCHO CUCAMONGA — The Los Osos girls basketball team might be the No. 1 seed for the CIF Southern Section Division 3AA playoffs, but the Grizzlies should not be confused with a team that has plenty of postseason experience.

Until this year, Los Osos hadn’t won a playoff game since 2018, and hadn’t been this far since 2017, when the Grizzlies won a section championship and went to the state finals.

So there were bound to be some nerves at least at the outset for Wednesday’s quarterfinal game.

Los Osos fell behind by seven points in the first half, then rallied and won going away, defeating Louisville 58-42 in at Los Osos High School.

The Grizzlies (23-4) will host fourth-seeded Moreno Valley in the semifinals on Saturday. Louisville (15-8) sees its season come to an end.

“For our team, this is our first time being here,” Los Osos coach Dawnesha Buckner said. “We made a joke before we came out, (asking), ‘who’s been in this position?’ Only myself and coach raised our hands. They’re not going to say it is, but it’s nerves. They really settled down near the end and got it together.”

Louisville capped the first quarter with a 7-0 run to take an 18-11 lead into the second. The teams traded the first two baskets of the second quarter, and then the Grizzlies went on a run, outsourcing the Royals 19-2 over the final seven minutes of the half.

Jackie Polk scored 10 of her game-high 20 points in the second quarter as Los Osos forced seven turnovers in the second quarter and turned many of them into fast-break points, many of them layups by Polk.

The Royals never got closer than seven points in the second half, and Los Osos seemed to put the game away with a 3-pointer by Hailey Estrada with 3:05 left that gave the Grizzlies a 53-37 lead. Estrada scored 18 points, 10 of which came in the fourth quarter.

One of their challenges was to slow down Louisville junior Taylor Westbrook, the tallest player on the floor. Westbrook had 15 rebounds, but scored only five points, all on second-half free throws.

“They did a great job of switching, hedging her and pushing her out of the paint where she likes to score,” Louisville coach Monica Hernandez said. “And they did a great job of speeding up the tempo on us defensively.”

Buckner wasn’t as pleased, feeling the Grizzlies allowed Westbrook too many rebounds.

“Believe it or not, we actually drilled boxing out,” Buckner said. “We’re definitely going to talk about that tomorrow. We definitely came up short in that aspect.”

It was a disappointing end to a solid season for the Royals, who moved up to Division 3AA after making the 3A quarterfinals last year and winning the 5A championship two years ago.

“We fouled them a lot, so they made a lot of free throws early,” Hernandez said. “That’s where all their points came from and then they just beat us to all the 50-50 balls. Then we stopped executing from there. They did a great job (on offense) of slowing the clock down. We like to play fast.”

Miye Kodama led the Royals with 13 points.

Buckner’s been in this position before and wants her team to appreciate the journey.

“I share with them our experience the first time, I share with them the (CIF championship) ring. (I say), ‘you guys enjoy it.’ And they are. They’re having a lot of fun,” Buckner said.