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Greg Pond has developed into a top volleyball player for Verdugo Hills.
Greg Pond has developed into a top volleyball player for Verdugo Hills. (Will Reinhart)

Will Reinhart is never shy about expressing himself when he believes strongly in something, and the veteran Verdugo Hills volleyball coach has become a big fan of All-City middle blocker Greg Pond.

“I’m now certain he’s the best player in program history,” Reinhart said.

The 6-foot-6 Pond has more than 200 kills this season and is nearing 50 blocks. He’s the all-time career kills leader in school history.

  • Baseball

One team came in at 17-1, the other at 15-2. It was Mira Costa taking on Torrance for South Bay baseball bragging rights on Saturday. Torrance won 4-1.

Kai Hershberger finished with three hits. Neil Feist threw three innings of shutout relief. Mira Costa didn’t help itself by committing three errors to lose for only the second time in 19 games.

Esperanza knocked off La Mirada 8-2 in a battle of top 25 teams. Jason Fox and Tony Accordino each had three hits. CJ Larsen contributed four RBIs. Jacob Cespedes allowed seven hits.




Crean Lutheran 10, Brethren Christian 0

Mark Bates has been hired as the football coach and athletic director at Santa Clarita Christian.

Bates used to be head coach at Village Christian.

He was a longtime assistant to Bill Redell at Oaks Christian.

Hart Coach Jim Ozella might lose all his hair this baseball season because of all the blown leads in the seventh inning by his team.

Finally, the Indians held on to defeat West Ranch 4-3 in a Foothill League game on Friday. West Ranch made it close, scoring a run in the seventh. But Peter Niednagel got a strikeout to end the game.

“I’ve got a lot of hair left,” Ozella said. “We decided to finish the job tonight. It was a big win.”

  • Baseball
Conquistadores defeat Patriots 8-0

They were shut out by Owen Sharts of Simi Valley. They were struck out by Jake Baum of St. Bonaventure. They were routed by unbeaten Arcadia.

There was a specific reason for El Camino Real playing one tough opponent after another in the nonleague season.

“The tough schedule is so we’re ready for league,” Coach Josh Lienhard said.

  • Basketball

The Collision boys and girls all-star basketball games will be held on Saturday at Harbor College. The boys game is at 7:30 p.m. and the girls game is at 5:30 p.m.

Tickets are $10.

Among the boys’ players committed to play are Kihei Clark of Taft, Jamal Hartwell of Farifax, Tyree Winborn of Van Nuys, Daisone Hughes of University, Devonaire Doutrive of Birmingham, Eddy Egun of El Camino Real, Bryce Hamilton of Pasadena and Riley Battin of Oak Park.

  • Baseball

Sophomore Lucas Gordon, who was expected to be the No. 1 pitcher for Sherman Oaks Notre Dame this season but never pitched, will be sidelined for the rest of the season after undergoing a procedure on his throwing arm.

Coach Tom Dill said the prognosis is good and Gordon should be back throwing during the summer.

Gordon was hitting .368 in 14 games this season for the Knights. He won’t be able to hit for the rest of the season.

  • Baseball

Junior pitcher Quinn Mathews struck out 12, walked none and allowed two hits in six innings to lift Aliso Niguel past Trabuco Hills 1-0 on Thursday.

In the second game of a doubleheader, Trabuco Hills defeated Aliso Niguel 7-5. Daniel Johnson had three RBIs.

Claremont defeated Glendora 4-3. Matt Ramirez hit a three-run homer in the seventh inning. Diamond Bar defeated Bonita 5-4. Fabian Moran had two hits and two RBIs. South Hills rallied for a 7-5 win over Ayala. Nick Martinez hit a three-run home run and Isaiah Ayala added a two-run home run to help South Hills overcome a 4-0 deficit.

Baseball coaches and parents everywhere should offer support for Reseda Cleveland coach Sid Lopez, who has been suspended indefinitely pending the outcome of an investigation into his decision to light a fire on the infield in an attempt to dry up a puddle last month.

Greg Venger, Cleveland’s athletic director, coached the baseball team on Wednesday when the Cavaliers upset Chatsworth 10-0 in a West Valley League opener.

A video showing Lopez’s actions was sent to the Los Angeles Unified School District, according to Trent Cornelius, the district athletics coordinator. Lopez was trying to make the field playable during a Friday practice for a Saturday junior varsity game.