San Ramon Valley moves into the top spot of the East Bay Area Girls Soccer rankings after earning a second consecutive Tri-Valley Classic championship in the Invitational Division.
The Wolves, ranked No. 2 in the state in the elitesoccer.com top 40, remained unbeaten with a 2-0 win over Buchanan-Clovis in the championship match at Mustang Soccer Complex. With a high-octane attack, the Wolves, earned their sixth Classic title overall in the top division, also beating James Logan 5-0, Santa Margarita-Rancho Santa Margarita 3-1 and tying powerful Archbishop Mitty-San Jose 0-0. Mitty is ranked sixth in the Elite Soccer state rankings.
San Ramon Valley (8-0-2) has outscored 10 opponents 32-4, but the Wolves defense was dinged by a counterattacking California in a 2-2 draw in EBAL play on Dec. 18. The Wolves’ Kristen Pavlick and Summer Stamates scored against Buchanan, and Melissa Lewis and Alyssa Alarab had assists.
Bishop O’Dowd, which slips to No. 2 this week, represented Bay Area soccer very well at the Excalibur Tournament in Southern California last week. The Dragons roared into the semifinals with wins over Walnut (2-0), Mater Dei (1-0) and Temecula Valley (3-0), before losing 2-0 against Edison-Huntington Beach in the semifinals.
The Dragons drew 0-0 with powerful Los Osos-Rancho Cucamonga in the third-place game.
Unfortunately, O’Dowd and San Ramon Valley won’t meet this season as they compete in different divisions in the postseason.
CLASSIC SPURS DEBATE: Lots of intriguing scores in the Tri-Valley Classic, which can be explained in part because of attrition. The hard-fought games come in rapid succession.
Carondelet dropped its first two Invitational Division matches by a goal against Buchanan and El Camino Real before besting Monte Vista and Logan each by a goal. It will be interesting to see if the Cougars, who have struggled getting traction in EBAL play, can continue their surge in the new calendar year.
College Park and Freedom both had solid efforts in the Gold Division. The Falcons tied Castro Valley 1-1 and beat BVAL power Liberty 2-0, before a 1-1 draw against last year’s NCS Division II runner-up Dublin. Freedom topped Foothill and Dublin in the Classic. Last season Freedom won a bruising battle against Granada in the NCS Division I playoffs in penalty kicks before the Falcons fell to San Ramon Valley 3-0 in the quarterfinals.
R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Here come the Cowboys. Livermore moved into the rankings with three excellent results, including a 1-0 win over Monte Vista, a scoreless draw against California and a 2-0 win over and Heritage.
Rankings (Through Dec. 31)
1, San Ramon Valley (8-0-2, 2-0-1 EBAL)
2, Bishop O’Dowd (9-1-1, 5-0-0 WAC-Foothill)
3, Berkeley (6-2, 5-1-0 WAC Foothill)
4, Monte Vista (4-3-2, 2-1-0 EBAL)
5, Logan (5-3-1, 4-0-0 MVAL)
6, Castro Valley (9-1-1, 5-1 WAC-Foothill)
7, Washington (8-0-2, 4-0-0 MVAL)
8, Granada (2-1 EBAL)
9, California (4-3-2, 0-1-2 EBAL)
10, Amador Valley (6-3, 2-1-0 EBAL)
11, College Park (7-1-3, 3-0-0 DVAL)
12, Carondelet (3-5, 0-2 EBAL)
13, Campolindo (6-0-2, 4-0-1 DFAL)
14, Livermore (4-3-1, 1-1-1 EBAL)
15, Freedom (4-2-0)
Also noted: Alhambra, Dublin, Foothill, Heritage, Liberty, Piedmont, Ygnacio Valley.