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Prep Rally: A great weekend of title games highlighted by Hart-Moorpark controversy

Corona launches its victory celebration after a 5-0 win over Harvard-Westlake in the Division 1 final.
(Craig Weston)
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Hi, and welcome to another edition of Prep Rally. My name is Eric Sondheimer. What a weekend it was for high school baseball and softball championships.

Championships

Ethan Schiefelbein of Corona threw a two-hit shutout in the Division 1 final against Harvard-Westlake 5-0.
(Craig Weston)

Let’s salute the Corona High baseball team, tops in Southern California, if not California and the nation, after its 5-0 win over Harvard-Westlake in the Southern Section Division 1 final. From the opening game until the last game, there was no team that was going to beat the Panthers when Ethan Schiefelbein or Seth Hernandez were on the mound. Schiefelbein went 8-0. Hernandez was 9-0. Corona won 30 games and hit six home runs in five playoff games. Here’s the report from Lake Elsinore.

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The most controversial game was in Division 2, where Hart came away with a 7-6 win over Moorpark. Or, if you believe Moorpark fans, Moorpark won 8-7 on a walk-off home run. The umpires reversed what looked to be a walk-off home run in the seventh, made it a ground-rule double and the rest is history and for debate involving videos and eyewitness testimony. Here’s the report.

The City Section is set to hold its Open Division semifinals on Tuesday at Pepperdine. Carson will face Birmingham at 11:30 a.m., followed by Granada Hills taking on Bell. The winners will meet on Saturday at 1 p.m. at Dodger Stadium. Here’s the report.

Here’s updated City Section pairings.

In softball, the wildest game was the City Section Open Division championship game at Long Beach State, where Carson and Granada Hills engaged in a scoreless game that lasted into the 14th inning and went more than four hours before Carson won 1-0. Here’s the report on the incredible pitching duel.

Brynne Nally of Pacifica struck out 11 and threw a two-hit shutout in 3-0 Division 1 championship win over Orange Lutheran.
(Nick Koza)

Pacifica is back on top in Southern Section Division 1 softball after beating Orange Lutheran 3-0 in the championship game behind Brynne Nally. Here’s the report.

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Ivy League story

Mother Ebony Robinson is proud of her three children going to Dartmouth after attending Fairfax.
Mother Ebony Robinson is proud of her three children going to Dartmouth after attending Fairfax. Romello (left) will be a freshman, Robert III is graduating next month and daughter Elyjah is a junior. Another daughter, Ellyott, is 8 years old and will have quite a legacy to live up to.
(Courtesy Ebony Robinson.)

A single mother who sends three of her children to the same Ivy League school, Dartmouth. Is that possible?

The amazing story is true. Three former Fairfax High athletes, the McRaes, have a Dartmouth story to tell and explain how sibling rivalries can be positive.

Here’s their story.

Football

Mater Dei head coach Raul Lara talks to Mater Dei cornerback Patrick Hall.
Mater Dei head coach Raul Lara talks to Mater Dei cornerback Patrick Hall.
(Allen J. Schaben/Los Angeles Times)

Wearing a gray Mater Dei T-shirt and white hat, Raul Lara is reminded almost constantly how strange he looks in Monarchs football gear by his acquaintances from his Long Beach Poly coaching days.

He had a 13-year run, winning five Southern Section Division 1 championships. Saturday at Long Beach Millikan was his team’s first seven-on-seven passing competition since agreeing to take he took over for Frank McManus at Mater Dei on April 25.

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“It’s like when I took over at Poly when Jerry Jason established something,” Lara said. “[Bruce] Rollinson did the same thing. It’s my job hopefully to keep up with that. If we can do a little bit better, then we do. I don’t feel pressure, but I feel obligated to keep this program at the top.”

Mater Dei won the tournament championship going 7-0. Here’s the report.

Golf

Palisades’ Luke Schultz follows through on his tee shot in Wednesday’s playoff to decide the City golf championship.
Palisades’ Luke Schultz follows through on his tee shot on the last hole in Wednesday’s playoff to decide the City golf championship.
(Steve Galluzzo / For The Times)

Luke Schultz picked a perfect time to shoot his lowest score.

The Palisades High junior shot a four-under par 68, including an eagle on No. 18 that forced a playoff, then sank an eight-footer for birdie on the sixth playoff hole to beat Isaiah Kim of Van Nuys and win the City Section individual golf championship at Griffith Park’s Harding Course.

“I’ve hit that same putt from that exact distance a thousand times,” Schultz said. “Same old putt and the same result. My personal best was a 74 here and today I shoot 68. Can’t explain. There’s no rhyme or reason to why I shot what I did today. Putts were just falling.”

Here’s the report.

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The Southern Section had seven divisional champions crowned, led by Palm Desert in Division 1. Here’s the report.

Oaks Christian sophomore Max Emberson won the Southern Section individual championship. Here’s the report.

Volleyball

Loyola celebrates winning Southern California regional volleyball championship.
(Brody Hannon)

Loyola won the Southern California Division I regional volleyball championship with a sweep of Mira Costa. The Cubs also beat Mira Costa for the Southern Section championship.

Redondo Union won Division II.

Track

Jordan Coleman, of Granada Hills, wins the 100-meter dash at the City Section track and field championships
Jordan Coleman, of Granada Hills, wins the 100-meter dash at the City Section track and field championships on Friday, May 17, 2024.
(Steve Galluzzo)

At the City Section track and field championships, Jordan Coleman of Granada Hills showed he will be a contender for this weekend’s state championships in the 100 meters, winning in 10.49 seconds.

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Carson’s girls’ team won its ninth consecutive City team title.

Here’s the report.

At the Southern Section Masters Meet, freshman Demare Dezerun of Bishop Alemany put on a show in the 100 meters, running a wind-aided 10.36 seconds.

Here’s the report from the Masters Meet.

The state championships will take place Friday and Saturday at Buchanan High School in Clovis.

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Notes . . .

Thomas Lancaster is the new girls’ soccer coach at St. Margaret’s. . . .

Birmingham All-City infielder JB Dalumpines has committed to Cal State Monterey. . . .

The North-South Orange County All-Star baseball game will be held May 29 at 6;30 p.m. at Great Park Stadium and be run by the Ryan Lemmon Foundation. . . .

Concord De La Salle is headed to London to play in a high school football game. . . .

Jason Crowe Sr. has been officially named basketball coach at Inglewood. . . .

Lorenzo Brunkow of Palisades has been selected a high school tennis All-American by the National High School Tennis All-American Foundation. He won the City Section singles championship this past week and led Palisades to the City title. . . .

Rory Schoonmaker is leaving Santa Ana High after one season as football coach to become head coach at El Segundo, which is closer to his home in Redondo Beach. . . .

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Former defensive coordinator Adam Leonard has been named interim football coach at Warren, replacing Kevin Pearson. . . .

Jacob Maiava, a starting center for Santa Margarita’s football team, has committed to SMU. . . .

Ryder Decena from Venice has committed to Pacific University in Oregon for basketball. . . .

Jodi Borenstein has resigned as softball coach at El Camino Real. She upheld the long tradition of program excellence and spent 23 years coaching. . . .

Joel Hartmann has resigned as Executive Director of Athletics at Mater Dei. He was hired by new school President Michael Brennan, who he worked with at Servite. He spent two years at Mater Dei and has been involved with high school athletics for 34 years. . . .

The Granada Hills duo of Aydan Fatu and Christian Camarillo won the City Section doubles title in tennis. . . .

Former Agoura water polo coach Jason Rosenthal is returning to coach girls water polo. Retirement didn’t last very long. . . .

Calabasas’ Simon Hoffman, an all-league baseball player, has committed to Elon. . . .

Fremont High has named its school gym after former basketball coach Sam Sullivan. . . .

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Standout running back Karson Cox from Oak Hills has committed to UCLA. . . .

Former Villa Park infielder Gavin Grahovac has hit 19 home runs as a freshman this season at Texas A&M.

From the archives: Jared Jones

Jared Jones pitching for La Mirada in 2020.
Jared Jones pitching for La Mirada in 2020.
(Luis Sinco)

Jared Jones lost his senior season at La Mirada in 2020 because of the pandemic. Asked where he saw himself one day, he said winning a Cy Young Award in the National League. He wasn’t kidding, and as a rookie this season for the Pittsburgh Pirates, the former La Mirada star is exceeding expectations.

He’s 2-4 with a 2.89 ERA in 53 innings. He has 63 strikeouts. On May 4 against the Rockies, he struck out 10 in seven innings and gave up one hit. He clearly has one of the most electric arms in MLB.

Here’s a story from 2019 when Jones was The Times’ player of the year his junior season.

Here’s an interview with Jones in 2020 discussing his future while dealing with the pandemic.

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Recommendations

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From the Los Angeles Times, a look at Bronny James.

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Until next time...

Have a question, comment or something you’d like to see in a future Prep Rally newsletter? Email me at eric.sondheimer@latimes.com, and follow me on Twitter at @latsondheimer.


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