East Bay Girls soccer rankings (Jan. 4 edition)

Well, well, well. … Carondelet doesn’t look quite ready to relinquish the North Coast Section Division I crown, now does it?
The Cougars’ resourceful 2-1 win over previously unbeaten San Ramon Valley on Tuesday night in East Bay Athletic League play made that abundantly clear.
The Wolves remain atop the East Bay Rankings based on their body of work, which includes a Tri-Valley Classic Invitational Division championship. But Carondelet vaults into the No. 2 spot.
 It’s been a crazy season thus far.
Logan, the runner-up in the Tri-Valley Classic, drew 3-3 with American on Jan. 3 in the Mission Valley Athletic League. Consequently, the sneaky Eagles (8-1-2, 2-0-1 MVAL) have swooped into the rankings.
Meanwhile, the EBAL looks like the Group of Death, with four teams each with two league wins (as of Jan. 4) — Carondelet (2-0-1), San Ramon Valley (2-1-0), California (2-1-0), Granada (2-1-0). Monte Vista (1-0-2) is just a step behind.
Always a solid Division I program, Berkeley has taken it to another level with an outstanding defense and a couple of fast forwards. The Yellowjackets’ Natalie Marie, a Mustang Soccer League player, leads the way with six goals and six assists.
Carondelet followed a proven upset formula against the Wolves, who resemble the Cougars of last season with their star-studded veteran roster. They scored twice early and held tight, with just enough attacking panache to keep the Wolves honest in the back.
San Ramon Valley’s outstanding goalkeeper Beth Ritter has been slowed by a miniscus injury. Even still, Ritter, always active in the box, charged well off her line for clearances and to bolster the late Wolves push against the Cougars.
Overall, an excellent coaching job by Rick Morin and his staff. The Cougars are getting better, but the Wolves have plenty of time to regroup.

East Bay Girls Soccer Rankings (subjective):
As of Jan. 3, 2012

1, San Ramon Valley (8-1-1, 2-1-0 EBAL)
2, Carondelet (5-1-2, 2-0-1 EBAL)
3, California (8-1-2, 2-1-0 EBAL)
4, Logan (4-2-3, 1-0-1 MVAL)
5, Granada (4-2-0, 2-1-0 EBAL)
6, Bishop O’Dowd (6-2-2, 3-1 HAAL)
7, Monte Vista (3-0-4, 1-0-2 EBAL)
8, Heritage (5-3-1, 0-0-0 BVAL)
9, Albany (8-0-1, 1-0-1 BSAL)
10, Berkeley (7-2-1, 2-0 ACCAL)
11, Dublin (9-2-1, 3-0-0 DFAL)
12, Castro Valley (4-4-0, 3-0-0 HAAL)
13, Liberty (3-0-1, 0-0-0 BVAL)
14, American (8-1-2, 2-0-1 MVAL)
15, Piedmont (4-1-1, 2-0-0 BSAL)
Also included (in alphabetical order): Alhambra, Amador Valley, Campolindo, Clayton Valley, College Park, Dougherty Valley, Foothill, Irvington, Miramonte, Livermore, Mt. Eden, Ygnacio Valley.
Source for records: maxpreps.com.
Corrections: Send to mschwab@bayareanewsgroup.com.

NOTE TO READERS: Rankings are based on results in key games, observation, information, and gut instinct. Coaches, serious fans and players should feel free to chime in with their thoughts on any soccer-related issues.

Matt Schwab

  • The Sweeper

    Matt Schwab,

    I spend most of my time commenting on Matt Smith’s boys soccer blog. Thanks for providing insightful commentary for the underappreciated girls game in the East Bay. For the Matt Smith followers you don’t know what you are missing if you don’t take in a few of the girls key matches. They rival the best HS girls soccer play in the country, and easily as good as SoCal.

    See you at the pitch!!!

  • ET

    Campolindo at Dublin on Friday night for 1st place in the DFAL. Dublin is 4-0 in league and Campolindo is 3-0-1 after last night’s league games. Should be a good game to watch.

  • The Sweeper

    Hey ‘ET Says’, your comment conjures an issue/opportunity.

    I am not sure that it matters, but having varsity boys and girls matches back to back has some merits. Common press and fans can watch both programs. I recall that MV and SRV may have done this at season end one year, but I forget the home field deal. But then again, those hooligan fans of the girls programs would never get along with those docile fans of the boys programs.

    But wait there’s more…this has worked with the NCS boys and girls championship matches at Dublin High.

    Of course this would put pressure on the two Matts to share a press box, or to divide and conquer the coverage.

    The big plus is that The Sweeper could cheapskate into two matches for the price of one.

  • ET

    I’ll be one of the “hooligan” fans at the girls game in Dublin. Not enough cheering at the boys games. Free admission to most of the girls games as well (except for NCS). Guess I won’t see you in Dublin tonight……..Maybe Matt Schwab will be there. DFAL soccer is strong again this year.

  • Abc

    Hey Sweeper,

    MV & SR have played there varsity boys/girls back-to-back since matches were changed to same day. It provides for a fantastic atmosphere with the bigger crowds. Jan 17th, will be at MV – boys @ 4pm, girls @ 6:00pm. On the return leg (at SR), girls will play first (5:30pm), boys second (7:30pm). Game times later because of senior night presentations.

  • The Sweeper

    ET #4 – sorry that I cannot make it to Dublin tonight and hooligan it up with the girls fans. Btw, I was charged $5 (ouch!) at DV this week for the boys match with Campo. Is that the going rate?

    Abc #5 – thanks for the note regarding back-to-back matches at MV & SRV still on the schedule. It is a great atmosphere and a win-win for all four teams from a fan support perspective.

  • ET

    Sweeper – You missed a tight game last night with Campo winning 1-0. You also saved yourself $5 as Dublin charged that as well last night. I believe Matt Schwab was at the game last night in Dublin.