Boys Soccer: Semifinals, All-Star Game, Rankings, Standings, Stats

And just like that, the final week of the season is here. Let’s look at the semifinals.

Division I

No. 1 De La Salle v. No. 12 Freedom; No. 6 San Ramon Valley v. No. 7 California

In semifinal number one we have the four-time defending champions, against a team in the playoffs for the first time ever. It is a perfectly sensible argument to say the Spartans have the advantage based on experience and having been here before. I agree with that most times, however, after seeing this Freedom team play and talking to their coaches and players, this team isn’t just here for the ride. This team is not scared to play anybody and are actually looking forward to the chance to play De La Salle.
This game could come down to the goalkeepers. Two of the best in the East Bay. Both big, strong and agile. Beating them won’t be easy. De La Salle has the advantage defensively with how organized and disciplined they are, but Freedom has the man up top, aka Jorge Cendejas. A true striker with a nose for the ball and the goal.
This is going to be a very entertaining game as Freedom looks to prove that this playoff run is no fluke, while De La Salle tries to keep the spirit of the Brotherhood alive.

Just up 680, at the same time on Wednesday, a couple of EBAL foes will square off for the right to go to the finals as SRV hosts Cal. These two teams have played twice, and have split, with Cal winning 3-0 the first time and SRV winning 2-0 the second time.
After a stretch that saw Cal go 3-6-0 after a 15-0-2 start, including four losses in a row at one point, the Grizzlies have gotten hot at the right time once again. The key for them was getting healthy and having everybody playing together again. The timing worked out well for Cal as they are the team that started the season so well, and not the team that had a little swoon.
As for the Wolves, this team was never a No. 6 seed. One of the deepest and most well-rounded teams in the playoffs, they have shown it. Dangerous from the time the tournament started, the Wolves were a six seed last year and made the finals. Why are they so good? They have a forward and two wings that constantly put pressure on the defense, they have a midfield that is deep and athletic and two of the best defenders in the East Bay with Schumann and Zetterquist.
Both of these teams like to play fast, and one goal won’t be enough on Wednesday to win this one.

Division II

No. 4 Concord v. No. 8 St. Mary’s; No. 2 Ygnacio Valley v. No. 3 Campolindo

By about the stroke of 5:15 on Wednesday, we’ll know how the first team to reach the finals as YV and Campo square off in an afternoon affair. This one should be interesting. Both teams play fast, possess the ball very well and are constantly putting pressure on the defense. YV has seemed to wake up in the playoffs after a slow finish to the year. Campo has hit its stride the last six weeks or so and is looking very dangerous. The home field advantage is something YV will need to take advantage of to make up for the toll taken on them by the Northgate game. They will be shorthanded due to some injuries and suspensions. However, they have two things no other team has and that is Tata and Damien. The two best players on the field are going to have to play like it and lift their team to the finals.
The Cougars, on the other hand, are very, very deep and very balanced. 18 different players scored goals, and nine different players scored three or more. In their quarterfinal game against Hayward, four different players scored.
The teams are similar in size, speed and style. Will Campo’s depth be enough or will YV’s star power win out?

For a second straight year, the Concord Minutemen find themselves a game away from a title appearance. They have not allowed a goal in the playoffs, they have their outstanding keeper in Emmanuel Jimenez back, and are playing a third straight game at home. This team, however, is not just a defensive squad. They play low-scoring games most of the time, but have some very dangerous players led by Andy Altamarino and Freddy Velasquez.
It is very unfortunate, for Acalanes, that St. Mary’s was seeded No. 8. This team probably should have been a top five seed, maybe even a top three seed. That game was a round or two, too early, but the Panthers showed why they had only lost twice, both times to Division I playoff teams. The team is so well rounded. They have a couple of studs in the back, a couple of fine players in the midfield and a couple guys who can put the ball away when given the chance.
Look for this game to be low-scoring, but it will be entertaining.

All-Star Game Update

I am finalizing the rosters this weekend and have already started to invite some players.
Remember, the game is Friday, March 8 and Richmond High. 7:00. If selected, it would be great if you can make it. Either way, let me know as soon as you can when I reach out to you.


The hardest time to rank teams is during the playoffs. We have to understand that the rankings work the same way during the playoffs as they do during the regular season, for the most part. They are going to change a little more drastically because of the gravity of the wins and losses, but remember that these rankings still take the whole season into account, but also consider what has happened recently. This isn’t a list of league finishers or who has beaten who in the playoffs, because we have league title banners and NCS brackets to tell us that.
DLS, SRV and Cal all jump as teams that have yet to lose, while it’s tough to move down Acalanes, MV and Berkeley too far for losing to good teams. St. Mary’s and Concord climb into the top eight, while Campolindo and Newark are back in the top ten.
Freedom debuts in the top 15, coming in at No. 13, and has a chance to keep making school history, and to keep climbing in the rankings, as they face the champs on Wednesday night.

1. De La Salle (16-3-6)
2. San Ramon Valley (17-6-3)
3. Acalanes (21-1-3)
4. California (18-6-2)
5. Monte Vista (17-4-4)
6. Berkeley (19-3-3)
7. St. Mary’s (16-2-3)
8. Concord (14-2-5)
9. Campolindo (17-7-2)
10. Newark Memorial (15-4-7)
11. Richmond (16-5-5)
12. Ygnacio Valley (15-4-5)
13. Freedom (14-9-2)
14. Pittsburg (13-4-6)
15. Hayward (18-5-3)

Others considered: Foothill (11-7-6), Northgate (13-5-7), College Park (11-9-4), Hercules (17-6-2), Amador Valley (11-10-4), Bishop O’Dowd (11-8-2), Deer Valley (9-8-5), Kennedy-Fremont (10-8-2), San Lorenzo (10-6-2), Antioch (9-6-6)


Team W-L (overall, league) PTS

Pittsburg (13-4-6, 6-1-3) 21
Freedom (14-9-2, 6-3-1) 19
Antioch (9-6-6, 5-3-2) 17
Deer Valley (9-8-5, 5-3-2) 17
Liberty (5-8-3, 2-6-2) 8
Heritage (2-14-3, 0-8-2) 2

Team W-L (overall, league) PTS

Acalanes (21-1-3, 10-0-2) 32
Campolindo (17-7-2, 7-4-1) 22
Dublin (8-9-4, 6-5-1) 19
Dougherty Valley (9-9-2, 5-6-1) 16
Miramonte (6-7-5, 4-5-3) 14
Alhambra (9-9-5, 2-7-3) 9
Las Lomas (1-12-6, 1-8-3) 5

Team W-L (overall, league) PTS

Ygnacio Valley (15-4-5, 9-2-1) 28
College Park (11-9-4, 8-2-2) 26
Concord (14-2-5, 7-1-4) 25
Northgate (13-5-7, 6-4-2) 20
Berean Chr. (6-10-3, 3-7-2) 11
Mt. Diablo (1-10-2, 1-9-2) 5
Clayton Valley (1-20-2, 1-10-1) 4

Team W-L (overall, league) PTS

De La Salle (16-3-6, 10-1-3) 33
Monte Vista (17-4-4, 10-2-2) 32
San Ramon Valley (17-6-3, 8-4-2) 26
California (18-6-2, 7-6-1) 22
Foothill (11-7-6, 5-5-4) 19
Amador Valley (11-10-4, 3-8-3) 12
Livermore (4-14-5, 2-9-3) 9
Granada (4-13-5, 1-11-2) 5

Team W-L (overall, league) PTS

Newark Memorial (15-4-7, 10-0-4) 34
Kennedy (10-8-2, 7-5-2) 23
Logan (9-9-7, 6-3-5) 23
Irvington (7-7-8, 6-4-4) 22
Moreau Catholic (4-9-5, 4-6-4) 16
Washington (5-7-9, 3-5-6) 15
Mission San Jose (6-10-8, 3-6-5) 14
American (3-13-4, 1-11-2) 5

Team W-L (overall, league) PTS

Oakland Tech (7-3-2, 7-0-1) 22
Skyline (6-1-1, 6-1-1) 19
Fremont (3-4-1, 3-4-1) 10
Oakland (1-5-2, 1-5-2) 5
Castlemont (0-7-1, 0-7-1) 1

Team W-L (overall, league) PTS

Richmond (16-5-5, 8-0-2) 26
St. Mary’s (16-2-3, 8-1-1) 25
Albany (8-12-4, 4-5-1) 13
El Cerrito (6-14-1, 4-5-1) 13
Salesian (4-5-4, 2-5-3) 9
St. Joseph Notre Dame (3-16-1, 0-10-0) 0

TCAL Stone
Team W-L (overall, league) PTS

Hercules (17-6-2, 9-0-1) 28
Pinole Valley (10-6-1, 7-2-1) 22
De Anza (8-6-2, 6-2-2) 20
Kennedy (4-9-0, 4-6-0) 12
Swett (2-10-0, 2-8-0) 6
St. Patrick-St. Vincent (0-12-0, 0-10-0) 0

WACC Foothill
Team W-L (overall, league) PTS

Berkeley (19-3-3, 15-0-1) 46
Bishop O’Dowd (11-8-2, 10-5-1) 31
Alameda (8-11-5, 7-8-1) 22
Mt. Eden (7-11-6, 5-5-6) 21
Castro Valley (5-11-6, 5-8-3) 18
Arroyo (5-12-5, 4-9-3) 15

WACC Shoreline
Team W-L (overall, league) PTS

Hayward (18-5-3, 12-2-2) 38
San Lorenzo (10-6-2, 9-5-2) 29
Piedmont (8-10-1, 7-8-1) 22
San Leandro (5-11-4, 5-7-4) 19
Tennyson (3-17-3, 3-11-2) 11
Encinal (1-15-0, 1-15-0) 3

Stat Leaders

Name School Goals
Montes, Richmond 37
Cendejas, Free 27
Ayala, YV 25
Romero, Hercules 23
Gala, Dougherty 22
R. Castillo, Hayward 22
Berumen, Pitt 17
Al. Marques, Hercules 16
Greenberg, MV 16
Solomon, Berkeley 15
Flink, BOD 15
Reiter, CP 14
Gray, Hayward 14
Sandoval, Newark 14
Orozco, SL 14
Grixti, Cal 13
Raynor, Cal 12
Clark, FH 12
Bolender, Ngate 12
Sandoval, Pinole 12

Name School Assists
Murgia, Pitt 21
Damian, YV 21
Alvarez, Richmond 18
Montes, Richmond 15
Gomez, Hayward 14
Clark, FH 13
Bramvila, Richmond 13
Croze, Acalanes 12
Cendejas, Free 12
Baringer, Pied 12
Mendoza, Hayward 11
Ortega, Hayward 11
Espinoza, SM 11
Torres, Moreau 10
Glascock, Acalanes 9
Lindgren, Acalanes 9
Hamdouni, Berkeley 9
Gratsch, MV 9
Sandoval, Newark 9
Bolender, Ngate 9
Xu, Pied 9
Aguilar, YV 9

Matt Smith

  • Mustangs11


    Yes, Rodd won NCS Championship in 2002 and was named NCS play of the year as a Junior at SRV with Busboom. He coached my son on JV with his Dad at SRV his first year back from Europe and then he quickly moved to DLS. Busboom always shares a moment with him before the teams meet.

    Just want to send a shout out to Busboom for rallying the troops back to the finals with his team. However, we all know DLS will bring it and are always the hardest team to face. Coach Brown picked up for Volt and is the best coach in the area for the last two years.

  • HalaMadrid

    Will both concord high schools win the finals??? Or will srv and campo get revenge for last year???

  • Matt Smith

    Couple of quick announcements. We have a live blog going on during the Division I finals. Matt Schwab will be manning the controls for the girls game, and I’ll hop on for the boys game. I’ll be keeping everyone posted on this thread as well, and this is the thread I’ll be using during the Division II boys game.

    Also, shout out to Steven Garcia from Hercules who has given his verbal to play at Merritt College next year. He joins Mt. Eden’s Juan Villegas, who also recently gave a verbal.

  • KFC

    @dada. Just an ignorant post…so tired of this kind of thinking. One of my good friemds coaches at an “underfunded” school. He has a ton of talent, and part of his job is fundraising just like dls. It befuddles me to hear someone with no knowledge bash a program for its success.

  • Well

    So you’re saying the kids from Richmond pittsburg Hayward and newark are extremely talented and the only reason dls wins is money?
    That’s the dumbest thing ive ever heard. Money does not win games.

  • Matt Smith

    Checking in from Alhambra. NCS Championship day is upon us.

  • Matt Smith

    It looks like my partner in crime, The Sweeper, is down and out with a bad cold.
    I can’t provide the same funny insight, but I’ll keep you posted.
    I’ll be going to La Tapatia alone, it seems.

  • Jogabonito

    Supporting both concord high schools participating in ncs.

  • Matt Smith


  • Matt Smith

    25 left. Still 0-0. No real chances yet.

  • Matt Smith

    Concord 1-0.

  • Matt Smith

    Concord hits the crossbar. Still 1-0 with 15 left.

  • Matt Smith

    1-0. 10 left.

  • Matt Smith

    Great save by Price. Nearly 2-0 Concord on a header right in front of goal.

  • Matt Smith

    1-0. Halftime.

  • Matt Smith

    1-0 with about 25 to go.

  • Matt Smith

    Still 1-0. 20 to go. Campo starting to apply pressure.

  • Matt Smith

    Still 1-0. Less than five left. Campo really putting the pressure on.

  • Matt Smith

    By the way, I think that if I occasionally say a ref has done very poorly, I should say when a ref has done very well. This center ref has been good. He’s done a great job of keeping a very physical game from getting out of hand, while at the same time letting the teams play.

  • Matt Smith

    It’s over. 1-0 Concord.

  • Goalboy

    Congrats to the Concord boys! Great season capped off with a Championship.

  • Itsabob

    Good Job Concord..well done.

  • Shinguard

    Congrats to Concord Minutemen , Lets bring home a 2nd one to the City of Concord GO SPARTANS

  • Congrats Concord win over Campo! Stick a fork in ’em – they’re done honey.

  • C’Mon

    What a black eye for high school soccer. Just a soccer fan with no interest in who won or lost, but to watch the green team throwing themselves on the ground and writhing in mock pain time after time after minor or, most times, no contact, what a disgraceful display. They should be embarassed. That’s horrible soccer. But the referees bought it and gave them free kicks. Disgraceful as well, that they couldn’t see through the gamesmanship and put a stop to it. Then the green player who was throwing himself on the ground the most, elbows the white defender behind him right in the face with no call. Unbelievable. The refs were quite obviously unprepared and unqualified for this level match with a team using these tactics. Zero cautions for obvious simulation. Multiple free kicks awarded for obvious simulation. Indeed a black eye for the sport that this behavior on the pitch is rewarded with a championship. Hopefully the other games have better soccer.

  • Sideline

    Rosters say that Jeff Greenberg from Monte Vista is a sophomore? If that’s true then we’ve got the underclassman of the year!

  • Matt Smith

    @Sideline I was told Greenberg is a junior. I’m 99.9 percent sure of that fact.

  • HalaMadrid

    Concord recieved no goals all ncs… Wether it be luck or solid defense thats a nice way to win it.
    Is it a record matt??

  • Sideline

    I believe that he’s a junior. NCS says he’s a sophomore…. Oopsies

  • Matt Smith

    @HalaMadrid it looks like the 2005 DLS team went through the playoffs without giving up a goal. But Concord is the first team to do it having to win four times, not just three.

  • spy

    reply to 425, saw the same thing as you did, however there were retaliatory efforts by both white and green. Neither team were angels. As for the flops, its a crappy part of the game, and the only thing that counts is the final score.

  • HS Soccer Fan

    Congrats to Concord– weathered the loos of their # 1 keeper mid – season for a significant number of game and then rode an all star defense to the championship

  • Matt Smith
  • HS Soccer Fan

    Looked like SRV had their chances and controlled play to a certain extent but could not finish. Winning goal a product of the ball just hanging around in the box too long. Hats off to both teams on a hard fought battle and congrats to DLS for pulling this one out.

  • DMach5

    @C’Mon I guess there are two sides to the coin because from my vantage point, the white/red team was playing what. I call no-rules soccer and the center simply gave them verbal warning after warning not wanting to issue any yellows. I do agree that the center was ill prepared to do this type of match. Ad I do agree as for that green player who threw the elbow – totally uncalled for and should have been carded if not ejected.

  • 11 v11

    425. &. 431

    You both have a valid point. No angels on the field.
    Lets be honest, if you let yourself be pushed , they will keep doing it.
    If the ref didn’t do a good job , which I think he did …. Goals are what count.
    I know the Concord coach very well and he hates dirty play.

    Concord went all year without a red card. Concord did not score a lot , but sure didn’t get scored on a lot either. And when the game was on the line (NCS) not one goal.

    Two Concord programs win the D1 & D2

    Cheers !!!!! Got it done !

  • C’Mon

    DMach5, you make a very good point. Both teams were very physical as that was what the ref was allowing (if he even noticed) but my issue is with the simulation, not the physical play. Spy says it’s the final score that counts but this game was born being played with honour between gentlemen. There is no honour for the green team in this victory. As for the elbow throwing green player- straight red, no brainer. Thankfully the games at Dublin had competent referees and all six teams came to play, relied on their skills, and for the most part did not insult the integrity of the game by resorting to the ugly behavior displayed by the green team at Alhambra.

  • FirstTouch

    Video of gaming winning goal – De La Salle vs San Ramon


  • NaiveFan

    As I read #425 I realized that anyone not attending that game would totally believe the well written bash on green. But having been there, and experiencing similar behavior from the other side (watching caution after caution to the big brute #10 with out a card) I believe, no matter how educated you are, its still hard to be a graceful loser.

  • Shinguard

    @Matt….and all the Soccer bloggers Great Season Great Teams 2012-2013 was not a disappointment.

    Matt you have done a great service for local HS soccer.

    GOOD LUCK with the All-Star Game.

  • Matt Smith

    @Shinguard Thank you! And thanks again for everything this year, it’s been fun.

  • NCS

    Anybody have player of year in mind???

  • ReCap

    Great DI game..FYI Konstantino the GK for Sparty unknown to team but after the impact with SRV player he had mild concussion with limited vision to right side of field. Talk about some true guts and determination to play through that.

    SRV put up a fight but you could see the energy level start fading in last 10 min of first half even as the game progressed into OT. DLS was running a targeted substitution pattern to keep some quality freshness in place. And who scores Nick Dildine a JR first year varsity rotation player who I believe scored the first DLS goal of the season for the Spartan and now scores the last. A classic in every sense of Spartan Soccer. The Brotherhood stood Strong last night in a very hard fought game with San Ramon. Video from FirstTouch says it all. Congratulations to the De La Salle Spartans

  • Stewie

    Coach of the year…Derricke Brown & Crew.
    5peat and *********** 11 NCS championships to-date for the De La Salle Spartan. I think Sir Alex would even have something to say 😉