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High school sports across the Southland
Tyler Thompson, 12, is granted his wish to meet Tom Brady

Tyler Thompson, the 12-year-oild son of Alemany baseball Coach Randy Thompson, was given a big surprise on Wednesday at his grade school in Simi Valley.

The Make-A-Wish Foundation surprised him at a gathering with the news that he and his family will be flying to Boston to meet New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady on Saturday, then watch the Patriots-Bears game on Sunday.

"He was in shock," his father said.

Thompson had to endure 14 chemotherapy treatments since he was disagnosed with a form of bone cancer last December. Scans taken earlier this week indicate the cancer is gone, his father said.

The family will be taken to the airport on Friday, stay in a hotel and spend the weekend in Boston. Thompson has been a big fan of Brady and the Patriots.

Randy Thompson said he has been grateful for the support of the community and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.




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Boys' basketball: Alemany, Crespi, Village Christian, Cathedral are top seeds

The 20-team San Fernando Valley Invitational in basketball is set to begin on Dec. 17, and the top seeds are Alemany, Crespi, Village Christian and Cathedral.

The championship game will be played on Dec. 23 at Alemany.

Games will be played at Alemany, Crespi, Granada Hills and Kennedy.

Other seeded teams are Canyon, Chaminade, Crescenta Valley and Verdugo Hills.




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Southern Section to induct 11 in its Hall of Fame

There will be 11 new inductees into the Southern Section Hall of Fame on Thursday.

The honorees are Tom Caffrey, former Whittier Christian football coach; Lonny Lee Carr, the Bonita cross country coach for 23 years; Regan Greene, the baseball coach at Mammoth for more than 25 years; Jack Hedges, who coached cross country at Westminister.

Karen Hellyer, a former athletic director at Irvine University and former assistant commissioner; Terry Henigan, who coached football for 41 years at Cypress and Irvine; Bob Lester, former football coach at El Modena; Cary Nerelli, former girls' basketball coach at Morro Bay; Don Norford, who spent 38 years coaching track at Long Beach Poly; Nori Parvin, the girls' basketball coach at Newbury Park for 35 years; Wendell Yoshida, former girls' basketball coach at Palos Verdes and Peninsula.

Also being honored for distinguised service are Jerry Chabola (Culver City), Ray Clifton (Liberty Christian), Ben Gonzalez (Norco), Pat Schmidt (Southern Section...

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Lacrosse still lacking enough teams in Southern Section

Schools continue to add lacrosse teams in the Southern Section, but there's still not enough to become an official championship sport.

The magic number is 113 each for boys and girls lacrosse. Last year, boys teams were close to 63 and girls were at 54.

According to Southern Section spokesman Thom Simmons, there will be roughly 70 boys teams and 60 girls teams this season.

On Wednesday, Village Christian became the latest school to announce it will begin playing lacrosse this year.

A championship is held at the end of the high school competition through a lacrosse association.




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Football: The QBs with zero interceptions

It's week eight of the high school football season, and I've found at least three starting quarterbacks who have zero interceptions.

They are Ricky Town of St. Bonaventure, Jeremiah Martin of St. Francis and Andrew Toro of South Gate.

The question is are the QBs motivated to avoid interceptions because they're so scared of hearing about it from their coach?

"He probably is," South Gate Coach Jose Casagran said of Toro. "He's just making good decisions, and that makes a big difference."

Martin has completed 86 of 131 passes for 1,668 yards and 15 touchdowns for the unbeaten Golden Knights (7-0).

"We definitely talk about winning the turnover battle," St. Francis Coach Jim Bonds said. "Hopefully, some of that is getting through to him."




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Football: Sierra Canyon players need a lesson in blizzard conditions

Chatsworth Sierra Canyon traveled to Bishop last week for a football game, and some of the players apparently thought they were going to play at Lambeau Field in blizzard conditions.

Junior receiver Christian Graves led the group of players expecting snow. He had gloves, sleeves and a chemical warmer.

Coach Jon Ellinghouse, who's a skier and wished there had been snow, said it was 60 degrees. Sierra Canyon won, 20-15.

Now the Trailblazers (7-0) are back in sunny Chatsworth preparing for a Gold Coast League showdown game against Brentwood on Friday night at Granada Hills High.

The good news is standout receiver Isaiah Renfro, who didn't play last week because of an injury, will be back for Brentwood.

"Isaiah is one of those guys who will make any coach and any quarterback better," Ellinghouse said.




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