DanvilleSanRamon.com

Sports - January 12, 2007

Girls basketball begins official season

MV leads in preseason; SRV competitive despite loss of four stars

by Rachel McMurdie

High school girls basketball officially got under way this week with Granada at San Ramon Valley and Monte Vista at Foothill (scores unavailable by press time). The Mustangs, coached by Ron Hirschman, entered league play with a 14-0 start to the season with a reputation as the team to beat. The team's tough defense has gotten it through three title-wins - the Basic Lady Wolves Tournament in Las Vegas, the Lady Bulldog Classic at Alhambra High, and the Lady Cougar Classic at Newark Memorial. Steph Cornell and Niveen Rasheed lead Mustang scoring but a deep bench and strong post in Carlyn Raphel makes it a tough team to beat.

But like every year, the East Bay Athletic League will produce strong challengers. San Ramon Valley High is no exception. Coached by Hans de Lannoy, the Wolves have felt the loss with the graduation of their four longtime varsity players, Megan Yetman, Ashley Cheung, Jennifer Dreessen and Devon Pierce. However, seniors Allie Bacharach, Mindy Bacharach, Katie Falk, Melissa Iovino and Kate Griffin return to the squad this year along with junior Mary Kate Tengler and sophomores Carlie Bonderer and Megan Calderazzo. Entering league play the team's record was a competitive 23-8 overall.

Wrestling

The San Ramon Valley wrestling team has found its new coach Randy Livingston, who will take over from longtime coach Ed Le Cara as head of the program. Livingston has coached youth wrestling at Los Cerros Middle School but has never coached a varsity high school program.

The Wolves, a young squad with just a handful of performing seniors - Matt Rudow, Andy Koski and Dan McClelland - have had their best team results so far at the Dec. 9 Castro Valley Invitational in which they earned a fourth-place finish. Rudow led SRV, taking home the 171-pound title after entering the tournament unseeded.

The Wolves will look for wins again tomorrow, Jan. 13, at the San Ramon Valley Invitational where 25 teams are expected to compete.

Boys soccer

The Monte Vista boys varsity soccer team chalked in two more wins last week, this time against non-league opponents, bringing their overall record up to 11-0-3.

The Mustangs served Alameda High with a 4-0 shutout Saturday, Jan. 6. Jeff Penna, assisted by Wes Lai, scored in the 29th minute that started a three-goal Mustang blitz. In just 10 minutes the Mustangs would take a 3-0 lead. Four minutes after their first goal, Nolan Bathalha, assisted by J.T. Londynsky, drove in goal No. 2. In the 37th minute of play, Morgan Oliver-Allen assisted by Jack Griffin drove in their third goal. Vinnie Butera capped off the Mustangs' win with a final goal in the 62nd minute of play. He was assisted by Penna.

Earlier last week the Mustangs beat San Lorenzo's Arroyo High 6-1 in a non-league match.

Girls soccer

Monte Vista's girls soccer team made its second appearance at the Southern California Excalibur Tournament, going as far as the semifinals of the consolation bracket. The Dec. 27-29 tournament, hosted by Santa Ana's Foothill High, featured 50 of the states premier high school teams.

The Mustangs lost their first-round game 0-1 to Long Beach Wilson High on Dec. 27, knocking them out of the Championship bracket. However, the team held on, winning their next two games to put themselves into the semifinals of the consolation bracket.

The Mustangs beat Notre Dame in a 4-0 shut out, and then defeated Capistrano Valley 3-2 later the same day.

In the semifinals, the Mustangs took on notoriously strong El Toro High, losing 1-2. El Toro lost in the finals to Los Osos High, which took the consolation bracket's top honors. Buena High School pulled a close 2-1 upset to beat Mission Viejo High for the top honor.

E-mail results to Sports@DanvilleWeekly.com; e-mail photos to Editor@DanvilleWeekly.com.

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