The Monte Vista High girls lacrosse team might be the top ranked team in California, according to westsidelax.com, but don’t forget about Carondelet.
The Cougars are ranked No. 3 in the state, they are 11-0 this year, including a perfect 5-0 in the ultra-competitive East Bay Athletic League.
They also have some very nice wins, beating St. Ignatius Prep, Torrey Pines and Poway, all in mid-March.
Carondelet, after a 12-10 win over Amador Valley on Tuesday, will likely move up to No. 2 in the state (the Dons were previously ranked second) regardless of what happens Friday.
Oh, what is Friday, you ask?
It’s only a game against Monte Vista. It could end up being one of the best games California has seen in 2010.
“We definitely have our hands full,” Carondelet coach Rick Jeffery said. “They are tall and athletic, but we have a special thing going. We have great team chemistry, and working together is why we have been so successful. If we can minimize their opportunities, control the draw and win the groundballs, we’ll have a good shot.”
The Cougars also have a secret weapon, and that is Ygnacio Valley Park in Concord.
“We definitely have a home field advantage,” Jeffery said. “We get to play on grass, which works to our advantage because the team’s we play at home only play on it once. It works against us as well because we don’t play on turf as much, but it should help on Friday.”
This year’s Carondelet installment might have what it takes to knock off Monte Vista. They have solid leadership with upperclassmen such as senior Emily DeSimone and junior Hannah Cooper, as well as four freshman that are usually in the starting lineup.
DeSimone is a prolific goal scorer while Cooper does it all, and is a fierce competitor. This gives Carondelet a balanced team and a solid blend of contributors.
Regardless of what happens on Friday, this group knows that it’s a long season and will hope to still be standing when it’s all said and done.
“With every game, these girls are growing,” Jeffery said. “We’re taking each game as a challenge and we’re not getting complacent.”
Defense is the name of the game
Amador Valley and San Ramon Valley are moving up the rankings, and the standings in the EBAL and for a reason, look no further than defense.
The Dons, coming off a big win on Tuesday at De La Salle, held a Spartans team that scores nearly 12 goals a game, to just five goals. Amador Valley is allowing just 6.3 goals a game.
Same goes for the Wolves. It all starts with defense. Only one time have they let a team score double figure goals, and it’s no coincidence that it’s the only game they have lost.
They gave up 17 to De La Salle on March 23 in a 17-10 loss. When the Wolves ended St. Ignatius’ 48-game winning streak against Northern California teams on March 17, it was done with defense, allowing only eight goals.
San Ramon Valley is also only allowing 6.3 goals a game.
Monte Vista has allowed double digit goals three times this year, and all ended in losses. The Mustangs are allowing just 5.5 goals in their wins.
Look to the Diablo Foothill Athletic League were league hopeful Acalanes is allowing just 7.2 goals a game this year, and is 1-3 in games where it has allowed more than nine goals.
Miramonte is 0-3 in games where it has allowed ten goals or more, and the Mats are allowing just over two goals a game in their wins.
Defense is becoming the name of the game in the North Coast Section.
On the boys side, there is some shifting. Friday will sort some things out. Bishop O’Dowd comes in at No. 10 after a big win over Berkeley. The Yellowjackets will have a chance to get back into the rankings in the next week. The Dragons will be challenged to stay in, facing Piedmont tomorrow.
On the girls side, the rankings stay the same.
2. San Ramon Valley
3. Monte Vista
4. Amador Valley
5. De La Salle
10. Bishop O’Dowd
1. Monte Vista
3. Amador Valley
8. San Ramon Valley
Piedmont (8-2, 2-0)
Bishop O’Dowd (6-4, 2-1) .5 GB
Berkeley (6-4, 1-1) 1 GB
Davis (6-3, 1-2) 1.5 GB
St. Mary’s (0-9, 0-2) 2 GB
Acalanes (7-4, 4-0)
Miramonte (6-4, 4-0)
Campolindo (7-3, 2-2) 2 GB
Las Lomas (4-6-1, 2-2) 2 GB
Dublin (2-7, 1-3) 3 GB
Dougherty Valley (1-12, 1-3) 3 GB
Alhambra (2-9, 0-4) 4 GB
Northgate (5-3, 0-0)
Berean Christian (6-4, 0-0)
Clayton Valley (5-6, 0-0)
College Park (1-7, 0-0)
Foothill (9-1, 5-0)
San Ramon Valley (9-1, 4-1) 1 GB
Monte Vista (6-3, 4-1) 1 GB
Amador Valley (7-4, 3-2) 2 GB
De La Salle (6-4, 3-2) 2 GB
California (6-4-1, 1-4) 4 GB
Livermore (6-5, 0-5) 5 GB
Granada (3-7, 0-5) 5 GB
Davis (5-3, 3-0)
Clayton Valley (5-7, 2-1) 1 GB
Northgate (2-2, 2-2) 1.5 GB
Berkeley (4-9, 1-2) 2 GB
Piedmont (1-4, 1-2) 2 GB
Bishop O’Dowd (3-4, 1-3) 2.5 GB
Acalanes (5-6, 3-0)
Campolindo (5-4, 3-0)
Miramonte (8-3, 3-1) .5 GB
Dougherty Valley (5-6-1, 2-2) 1.5 GB
Las Lomas (4-7, 2-2) 1.5 GB
Dublin (1-7, 0-4) 3.5 GB
Alhambra (0-5, 0-4) 3.5 GB
Monte Vista (9-0, 5-0)
Carondelet (11-0, 5-0)
Amador Valley (7-2, 3-2) 2 GB
Foothill (7-4, 3-2) 2 GB
California (7-3, 2-3) 3 GB
Granada (6-4, 1-4) 4 GB
San Ramon Valley (4-7, 1-4) 4 GB
Livermore (2-7-1, 0-5) 5 GB