East Bay Boys Soccer Notebook

Some of the top high school boys soccer teams in the North Coast Section put their game on display against top teams from other sections as De La Salle hosted its 2009 Soccer Showcase this past weekend.

Richmond, De La Salle, Bishop O’Dowd and San Ramon Valley were all put to the test by teams from the Central Coast, Central, Southern and San Diego Section’s.
Four of the top seven teams in the East Bay, according to the Bay Area News Group’s East Bay online soccer rankings, faced off with with Archbishop Mitty and St. Francis-Mountain View of the CCS, Bullard and Clovis West of the CS, Santa Margarita of the SS and Cathedral Catholic of the SDS.
“The DLS Showcase is a high quality event on and off the field,” Richmond coach Rene Siles said. “I like that we get to play teams from different sections. It’s always exciting. I like the professional way in which the showcase is put together by DLS, it’s a first-class event and better organized than the tournaments we went to in South California a few years back.
“I like that there are college coaches in attendance, because it relays the fundamental message that high school soccer is not as much about soccer, as it is about getting an education. In our community, it is a fairly new and very important message.”
And in this well-run, and well-attended event, the NCS teams did quite well.
Bishop O’Dowd, De La Salle and San Ramon Valley all went 2-0 while Richmond went 1-0-1.
The top-ranked Oilers probably should have gone 2-0, finishing with a 2-2 draw with Mitty despite controlling the field, the ball and having more shots on goal than the Monarchs did.
Even despite the draw, the Oilers looked very explosive, athletic and worthy of being the East Bay’s top ranked team.
“It is always a great feeling to see a team coming together,” Siles said. “It’s satisfying to see the kids come through and build something. Technically, I like that whoever we play, we create a lot of chances. Sometimes we have a hard time converting them, sometimes we don’t, and we will be working on this aspect of our game.”
San Ramon Valley and De La Salle proved at that they will compete in the East Bay Athletic League and be a handful in the Division I playoffs, while O’Dowd showed that they are perhaps the best Division II team.
“I thought San Ramon Valley looked very strong physically, and in their organization, as usual,” Siles said. “I liked their forward Johan (Sjorgrell) very much. I would not be surprised to see them win the EBAL. DLS is also a very strong contender there, with all their traditional attributes. O’Dowd impressed me by their physical strength and by their determination.”


College Park jumps into the top ten, deservedly so, after winning the Tri-Valley Champions Challenge. Just as impressive, California moves to No. 2 after its win over Granada. Dublin appears in the top ten for the first time.

1. Richmond (5-0-4)
2. California (8-0-2)
3. De La Salle (4-1-1)
4. Newark Memorial(9-1-1)
5. Granada (7-2-1)
6. Bishop O’Dowd (6-0-3)
7. San Ramon Valley (6-1-2)
8. Acalanes (7-1-0)
9. Berkeley (6-2-1)
10. College Park (4-3-4)
11. Castro Valley (5-2-2)
12. Dublin (9-2-0)
13. Albany (7-0-2)
14. Amador Valley (3-3-2)
15. Clayton Valley (7-1-1)

Others considered: Ygnacio Valley (5-0-2), Arroyo (5-3-0), Monte Vista (2-2-5), Las Lomas (6-3-0), Alhambra (6-1-2), Foothill (5-5-1), Logan (6-6-0), Free (3-2-3), Deer Valley (5-3-1), Hayward (5-3-0).

League standings

Team Overall League Points
Alameda (2-8-0) 2-0-0 6
Berkeley (6-2-1) 1-0-0 3
El Cerrito (3-4-0) 1-1-0 3
Richmond (5-0-4) 0-0-0 0
Pinole Valley (2-5-1) 0-1-0 0
De Anza (2-7-2) 0-1-0 0
Hercules (0-2-0) 0-2-0 0

Team Overall League Points
St. Mary’s (5-3-2) 3-0-1 10
Albany (7-0-2) 2-0-0 6
Kennedy (5-4-0) 2-0-0 6
Swett (2-3-0) 2-2-0 6
Salesian (1-0-1) 1-0-1 4
Piedmont (3-2-1) 1-1-0 3
St. Patrick-St. Vincent (1-2-0) 1-2-0 3
Encinal (0-9-0) 0-4-0 0
St. Joseph-Notre Dame (0-6-0) 0-3-0 0

Team Overall League Points
Antioch (2-4-3) 2-0-1 7
Freedom (3-2-3) 1-0-2 5
Deer Valley (5-3-1) 1-1-1 4
Pittsburg (4-6-1) 1-1-1 4
Hertiage (1-4-0) 1-2-0 3
Liberty (1-4-2) 0-2-1 1

Team Overall League Points
Alhambra (6-1-2) 3-0-0 9
Dublin (9-2-0) 3-1-0 9
Acalanes (7-1-0) 2-1-0 6
Las Lomas (6-3-0) 2-2-0 6
Dougherty Valley (4-4-0) 1-2-0 3
Campolindo (2-5-3) 0-3-1 1
Miramonte (0-2-1) 0-2-1 1

Team Overall League Points
Ygnacio Valley (5-0-2) 1-0-1 4
Concord (1-4-2) 1-0-1 4
Clayton Valley (7-1-1) 1-0-0 3
Northgate (2-7-1) 1-0-0 3
College Park (4-3-4) 0-0-2 2
Mt. Diablo (0-2-0) 0-2-0 0
Berean Christian (1-7-1) 0-2-0 0

Team Overall League Points
California (8-0-2) 2-0-0 6
De La Salle (4-1-1) 1-0-1 4
San Ramon Valley (6-1-2) 1-0-1 4
Livermore (2-3-0) 1-1-0 3
Monte Vista (2-2-5) 0-0-2 2
Foothill (5-5-1) 0-1-1 1
Amador Valley (3-3-2) 0-1-1 1
Granada (7-2-1) 0-2-0 0

Team Overall League Points
Arroyo (5-3-0) 3-0-0 9
Hayward (5-3-0) 2-2-0 6
Bishop O’Dowd (6-0-3) 1-0-2 5
Castro Valley (5-2-2) 1-0-1 4
San Lorenzo (3-2-1) 1-1-1 4
Mt. Eden (5-5-0) 1-1-0 3
San Leandro (2-5-2) 0-3-1 1
Tennyson (0-2-1) 0-1-1 1
Moreau Catholic (1-3-0) 0-1-0 0

Team Overall League Points
Newark Memorial (9-1-1) 3-0-0 9
Logan (6-6-0) 3-0-0 9
Mission San Jose (7-4-1) 3-1-0 9
Washington (1-7-2) 1-2-1 4
Kennedy (1-3-1) 1-2-1 4
Irvington (2-7-2) 0-3-0 0
American (0-5-0) 0-3-0 0


Here is the list of the players in the East Bay who are top ten in goals and assists. Not everyone is reporting all of their stats, so this isn’t as accurate as it could be. For those that are reporting, your kids are rewarded.

Fuentes, Newark 9
Borges, Albany 8
Thornton, Castro Valley 8
Romero, YV 8
Anderson, Cal 7
Weir, Dublin 7
Rietz, BOD 6
Rivas, Cal 6
Randall, CP 6
Rascon, DA 6
Hoster, Dublin 6
Chen, Las Lomas 6
Villagran, Newark 6
C. Gonzalez, San Lorenzo 6
Ruloff-Jones, St. Mary’s 6

Gomez, Clayton 7
Montes, Richmond 7
Borges, Albany 6
Arzate, Newark 6
Lopez, YV 6
Swafford, BOD 5
Shiluck, Castro Valley 5
Weir, Dublin 5
Hoster, Dublin 5
Tieku, EC 5
Chen, Las Lomas 5

For questions, comments, to report scores, update standings or statistics, please email Matt Smith at mhsmith78@gmail.com.

Matt Smith

  • eastbaysoccerfan

    How come Albany isn’t ranked higher? They are still undefeated, and tied BOD. Their key player Borges is in the top 5 for assists and goals. Teams with multiple losses should not be considered above them.


  • Matt Smith

    Well O’Dowd moved up because of a great showing at the DLS Showcase. The teams with losses ahead of Albany have been playing teams like SRV, DLS, etc…
    Strength of schedule has to be a factor.

  • dval spectator

    good rankings i agree with almost all of them. i say you swap cv nd amador. yv could possibly crack the top 15 if they continue to win. cp is going to be challenged in the next few upcoming games against Granada, CV, and Acalanes. Good games to watch Monday afternoon with YV vs las lomas @ yv at 3pm and CP vs Granada @ cp at 3pm as well! should be entertaining, go DVAL!

  • The Sweeper


    Thanks for the early season low down. You are living up to the high standards that your Fall/football colleagues carried this season. Keep up the good work. The cognoscenti get it…

  • Out of pocket

    Dval, AV will have every opportunity to move up in the rankings with games against Logan, Newark, and Richmond over the next two weeks. They play Logan (at Logan) tonight at 6PM. They are a better team, in my opinion, than their record and the standings suggest. Though they will certainly have their work cut out for them against this trio of teams (currently Logan 3-0, MVAL; Newark 3-0, MVAL; Richmond #1 in the rankings).

    However, the rankings are good, especially the top five teams. Of the 6-10 teams, I have only seen Acalanes play, and that was in a scrimmage. So no comment on this group.

    But, of the 11-15 teams, AV is probably ranked too low, with all due respect to the other teams in this group, most of which I have not seen play this season. Toss out the two PKs CV scored against AV and you have a 1-0 CV win, which was somewhat more indicative of the match. But give CV its due as it has won some games and definitely played tough against AV that night. Again, toss out the two PKs Granada scored against AV and you have a 1-1 tie; however, Granada played very well in this match and rightfully won the game and the Winter Classic with it.

    And I might argue on behalf of MV cracking the top 15. If they continue to play the way they are capable of playing, then teams had better come prepared. They’re scrappy, they come to play, and they’re going to score some goals.

    BTW, when does Arroyo play O’Dowd? Or CV?

  • Matt Smith

    On my schedule I have O’Dowd playing Arroyo at home on Jan. 8. Not sure when Arroyo plays Castro.

  • The man

    like the rankings but I do believe Albany should
    be ranked higher not only Borges is having a phenomenal
    year so far also Albany have bunch of great players. This is why there
    doing so good so far. And I believe Arroyo should be ranke higher also.

  • BbOy

    I still don’t get it how Acalanes is ranked so high!
    they are seriously the most overrated team in the whole NCS! LL beat Dublin and they still aren’t ranked! And they just beat YV in a non-league game. YV BTW is a pretty good team, it just lacks good coaching. Dublin should definitely be ranked higher than Acalanes.
    I’m not a hater but ranking a team that plays horrible soccer high like that is bs.

  • chino

    I was at the YV vs Las Lomas game, Las lomas started the game strong! once YV settled in and started touching the ball they started controlling the game. Bboy you must be from Las Lomas… If you saw this game you would of been able to notice that the YV coach adjusted his team at halftime… They dominated the whole 2nd half and had many chances to score! The only chances Las Lomas created were of the long throw ins they had. Other then that YV played a much better game. Shots 1st half… LL 5 YV 4. 2nd half… LL 2 YV 9. With this stats how do you explain how it lacks coaching? Do you know the coach? I heard he was young but he did a great job adjusting his team at halftime. Las Lomas did touch the ball well and had a good game plan… The long throw in works well especially against a school like YV who lacks in size. My vote is still for YV a much better overall team then Las Lomas.

  • Soccer Fan

    8,. Where were you? I too was at the game and at best the game was equal.Las Lomas had the run of play through out the first half and scored late to take the lead.I’ll give you that the YV coach made a nice adjustment at half but YV still couldn’t break the Las Lomas defense.By the way, the YV keeper had 5 saves in the second half and the LL keeper had 6 The teams have different styles and the YV style of long ball and counter did not work against a more disciplined Las Lomas team. Kind of like the CP game.Las Lomas had YV on discipline,tactics and skill but I did like the work rate that YV showed.Check the score and you will know who the better team was… at least for today

  • Matt Smith

    Hey guys,
    As far as the rankings go, I am glad to hear your feedback. It’s good that they are getting the discussion going. I like hearing different opinions of where teams should be ranked and what not.
    I’m happy to keep the coverage alive for the soccer community and I am glad you guys are reading the stuff.

  • Cokito

    Hi Matt,

    Does the EBAL count 3 points for a win or 2? According to the standings above, it is 3, but up until last year it was 2.

  • Matt Smith

    They just changed it to three points this year, I have been told.

  • chino

    YV does not play a long ball style of soccer. I find it hard that you can say Las Lomas has more skill then YV. YV players have speed, moves, and touch…Las Lomas is more physical and tactical. LL was very dicipline on defence and didn’t over commit which worked well for them. LL didn’t create many chances at all… only on the long throw in. YV created chances with their outside midfielders and the LL keeper came up with some great saves. Great goalie! I didn’t see YV keeper make 1 save during the 2nd half… If you count a bad cross being a save then he had 5. A save to me is when he actually has to dive and stop a shot like the LL keeper had to do a few times. I credit both teams for a well played game. I dislike when they say YV lacks coaching when I clearly saw YV adjust and dominate the 2nd half.

  • FormerFarmer

    Arroyo is not 3-0 in HAAL, they lost to castro valley at home last week.

  • YV player

    Bboy- I was wondering if you ever been coached by our coach or know him? Since you say we lack coaching… He knows the game and understand it better then any other coach. I can tell that you just like to talk out of your ass… Before you make a statement saying that we lack coaching maybe you should take your time and actually go see what he does and how he motivates our young team to go out and play hard every game. We had 5 freshmen starting in yesterdays game… Tell me what other school does that and is as good as we are? We played a horrible first half and the coach adjusted the team at halftime and we came out playing a stronger 2nd half. Our team will do well and i hope we see Las Lomas in NCS and we will come out playing hard from minute 1 and show them that we will be ready to stop the long throw in which was the only way they created chances. BTW we were missing 2 starting defenders that would of been able to do better in the air. GO WARRIORS!!

  • Out of pocket

    Musings from the billiard table (Logan’s home field)…

    Although Logan HS is nearing completion of a performing arts complex in what used to be the stadium parking lot, very little consideration was given to how they soccer and football teams might perform on a new turf field (obviuosly no one spoke up for either team during discussions on how best to spend the money). This outdated relic of mutant proportion has to be the worst field to compete on; Newark’s natural grass surface running a close second, in my opinion. Consider a corner kick: the approach starts on the track with a quick step over of a metal curb and step up onto the turf with but a few feet to spare to strike the ball.

    And then there’s the bounce! It’s as if the ball was inflated with helium. Heck, the keeper can score with the right bounce.

    And so it goes, to no one’s surprise who has ever watched a game played here, that the home team has a slight advantage based on familiarity even though they still have to play on this same turd, I mean, turf. Hey, it does make for an entertaining affair, if one likes to watch ballroom dancing (it’s so darn small).

    Fortunately AV and Logan rose above the obvious handicap and did not disappoint those who braved the elements last night. That the game would end 0-0 was perhaps a good indicator of AV’s resilience. There is simply no margin for error at this facility. They played well enough to go home with a W instead of a T. Though Logan gave no quarter either, nearly getting a W with a glancing blow off the crossbar from a very difficult angle with less than 2 munutes to go. A tip of the cap to both teams for keeping us entertained for 80 cold and wet minutes.

  • BernieBernard

    I was at the Granada/College Park game yesterday. Granada beat CP 4-0. Granada took a 4-0 lead into half, replaced most of the starters then cruised into Christmas break. College Park barely crossed mid line the entire first half. Granada got 2 goals from their freshman forward (#4 )and he should’ve had a couple more if it were not for some great saves by CP’s keeper. CP looked pretty unorganized. Maybe they were not mentally prepared.
    And to “out of pocket” or should we call this blogger “should’ve would’ve could’ve, Granada beat Amador 3-0. I guess if you take away 2 penalty kicks (high percentage breakaway chances), the fouling team gets a goal. In that game Amador looked just so-so.

  • BbOy

    Chino.. YV has a pretty good team don’t get me wrong, but trying their game is kinda figured out.. they have great skills but even before going to the game you can predict what they r goin to do.. LL played differently than their usual formation just to stop the fast outsides that u guys have and that compromised the beauty of our game.. it was a close game and LL won more by tactics than skill.. I invite you to come watch one of our games against any of the teams in our league to see how we play.

    #10 I agree with u but as good as the YV team can be they can’t go much far doing the same plays over and over.. it was predictable but well organized.

  • BernieBernard

    I’m a dullard. I just used should’ve as well. Granada rolled thru non league going 8-0-1. As soon as they got to the EBAL play it was a different story (0-2 against DLS and Cal). Most EBAL teams need to be ranked top 15.

  • chino

    Bboy.. Like you said you guys adjusted your formation to stop the outside midfielders. I’m sure next time you guys play again YV will adjust to the long throw in that LL does everytime… Which was predictable but smart cause YV lacks in size. YV team is very young. They started 5 freshmen in yesterdays game. The only thing that bothers me is that you said they lack coaching when they came out a lot stronger in the 2nd half and started controlling the game. Which means the coach adjusted his team and played a lot better! I wouldn’t expect you to know much about coaching anyways just by your statements that you have said about the YV coach.

  • najort

    Out of Pocket,

    Arroyo and CV already have played on the 18th at Arroyo, which ended in a 2-1 win for CV.

    I know I may sound cliche, but I have to admit that the reffing in this game was awful. There was something like 5 or 6 yellow cards for CV and none for Arroyo. I thought it was a very clean game myself, but I guess the refs didn’t think so. If these were volunteers I wouldn’t complain, but these are paid officials. Anyways, the scoreline in this one makes it seem closer than it was. The Arroyo goal came in the last few seconds of play and this game was marked by poor CV finishing. The run of play was somewhat even, but CV seemed to constantly come up with golden opportunities that they couldn’t put away. No disrespect to Arroyo because they are a good team with some talented players it just wasn’t their day. I think the HAAL race will come down to O’dowd and CV as usual, but CV looks to be the better team this year

  • Soccer Fan

    Chino, I think Bboy was actually giving YV some respect with his comments, as have I in my posts.They have a good team and good skill but they didn’t get the result. Sometimes that happens.My comment about” long ball” in post 10 had more to do with the direct play the YV coach thought would work in the second half.No doubt he thinks that #7 can beat most defenders to a ball.In this case he couldn’t but YV was desperatly trying to knot the score: hence, the ” predictable” comment ( I think).
    With 5 freshman YV will be tough for the next few years.Perhaps this year but they have some admitted physical obstacles to overcome; namely size ( your words).
    LL did a good job making their adjustments as well and make no mistake, the LL players have equal skills,athleticsm ( strong throws and speed) and they know the game.
    BTW, love the description of the Logan field in #16.The billiards table..how true is that!

  • Out Of Pocket

    You’re not a dullard, Bernie. And I couldn’t agree with you more re: “most EBAL teams need to be ranked top 15.” Acalanes is accorded a spot that simply would not stand if they faced a steady diet of EBAL teams. And I suspect others would similarly drop in ranking as well.

    My point re: AV had to do with the fact that they are a better team than their record and ranking indicates. And I stated clearly that Granada righfully won the game and with it the Winter Classic vs. AV. Translation: AV was a finalist in the Winter Classic, not Cal or any other team. They got there by winning a few games, etc. And there’s more to come, too, as they mend and blend, so to speak.

    Disappointing, to me, that Granada lost to Cal and then DLS. Not sure which wheel feel off the wagon, but G looked every bit to be “the” dominant horse in the race. What’s going on?

  • Matt Smith

    I have to chime in for a second and say I’ve been very impressed with Cesar and the way he is running things at YV. I think he’s a good coach and that school will be fortunate to keep him around for a while, especially while all these young studs continue through high school.

  • BernieBernard

    The game against Cal was the bigger of the 2 losses. Not only because of the outcome but also the loss of their goalie still lingers. Cal scored the tying goal on a followed up shot that Granada’s starting goalie bobbled. The Cal player put it in along with the goalies arm (clean play). The game against De La Salle was a bit different. Granada missed 2 golden chances early in the game. DLS weathered the storm and capitalized on a goalie/defender miscue. Their second was a result of Granada trying to score the tying goal (caught up too far). The wheels were held on by their #1 goalie. He’s out for now dealing with the after effects of his seperated shoulder.

  • BbOy

    Never said that the YV coach was bad, what I meant was that even though you guys came out stronger than the first half u guys were using the same style of play which obviously wasn’t working much. props for the fast guys that u guys have, but that game was won by the team that knew how to take advantage of the chances and played a bit better.

    Saves: Knuth (LL) 10, Rodriguez (YV) 10

    this show how equal was the game and that LL was competent enough to win. Not taking away any of you guys merits while playing the game but when I said it lacked a bit of coaching it was the X factor of the way that you guys played that made a difference, YV persisted in the same style that obviously wasn’t working against LL.

  • chino

    Bboy I understand what you mean… A team like YV that has been doing well kept playing the style of soccer that they been winning games with. If they been winning why change it? LL did do a great job of staying organized on defence but YV did have at least 5 clear chances to score. They almost scored in the first 10 seconds of the 2nd half. The LL keeper came up with a great save. I also saw the outside midfielders beat them and created goal scoring chances. The MVP of the game was the LL keeper. BTW the #7 kid can take any defender on a 1 on 1 situation. He just wasn’t getting the ball played to his feet which hurt them. LL did a great job being physical the whole game.

  • Cokito

    I would like to wish you all a Happy Holiday Season, and I would like to take this opportunity to thank Matt for the outstanding job he has been doing for HS Soccer in NCS, and to thank all of you for your sharing your wit and opinions on this blog.

    ‘After many years during which I saw many things, what I know about morality and the duty of man, I learned it playing soccer’ — Albert Camus