By Mark Tennis
Contributing: Paul Muyskens
(After games of Tuesday, March 12; previous ranking in parentheses)
1. (1) Cathedral Catholic (San Diego) 1-0
A 3-0 win on Tuesday over El Capitan of Lakeside keeps the Dons in the top position. Andrew Wright pitched the final three innings with one hit allowed while Michael Martin also gave up just one hit in four innings. Their other two early-season victories have come against Bonita Vista of Chula Vista and La Costa Canyon of Carlsbad.
2. (2) Harvard-Westlake (North Hollywood) 7-0
After winning the Easton tourney, the Wolverines have followed with wins against Camarillo and Loyola of Los Angeles. They also are the No. 1 team in the L.A. Times’ top 25.
3. (3) St. Francis (Mountain View) 9-0
The Lancers opened their West Catholic Athletic League schedule on Tuesday by topping Archbishop Riordan of San Francisco 7-0. They have a tough game Friday against Archbishop Mitty of San Jose.
4. (4) Rancho Bernardo (San Diego) 3-0
The Broncos won on Tuesday over Valhalla of El Cajon. Their other two early-season victories have come against Granite Hills of El Cajon and Hilltop of Chula Vista.
5. (5) Elk Grove 4-0
Dom Nunez ripped a home run as the Thundering Herd went to Stockton on Tuesday and beat three-time defending CIF Sac-Joaquin Section Division I champ St. Mary’s 10-1.
6. (NR) Capistrano Valley (Mission Viejo) 8-1
After losing their first game to state-ranked Long Beach Poly, the Cougars have been rolling, including a 3-2 win against Orange Lutheran last weekend to win the Newport Elks tourney. Shane Timmons led the way with three hits, including a game-winning double. They have moved up to No. 1 in the Orange County Register’s rankings and get a huge boost for the state rankings this week as well.
7. (NR) Fountain Valley 6-0
Orange County’s other unbeaten team for the early season also gets a big bump, primarily for posting a win last week over previous No. 7 Cypress. The Barons, who also have a win over El Toro, start Sunset League play Friday against Huntington Beach.
8. (8) Mater Dei (Santa Ana) 2-1
The Monarchs topped Servite of Anaheim on Tuesday in a Trinity League game. Their loss in the first game of the season to St. Mary’s of Stockton was quickly avenged in the second game of a double-header.
9. (9) Serra (San Mateo) 7-1
Although the Padres didn’t lose since the last rankings were done, they didn’t get to move up this week because the only team they have lost to (Campolindo of Moraga) has fallen to 1-3.
10. (7) Cypress 6-1
A loss to Fountain Valley doesn’t cost the Centurions too many spots in the rankings because the Barons are unbeaten and moved way up. Cypress posted an 11-4 win on Tuesday over J.W. North of Riverside as Elijah Skipps, David Fletcher and Stephen Lohr all had two hits, including Skipps with a homer. No, we don’t think he skips around the bases on his home runs.
11. (NR) Buchanan (Clovis) 9-0-1
Our 2011 State Team of the Year is back in the top 20 with a hot start. The Bears won last week against Stockdale of Bakersfield and Pleasant Grove of Elk Grove. They have a big game coming up Friday against 9-1 Central of Fresno.
12. (14) Chaminade (West Hills) 6-1
Yes, the Eagles have a lopsided loss to Harvard-Westlake, but that team is No. 2 and that’s still their only loss. In last week’s games, Chaminade won twice against Hart of Newhall.
13. (12) Lutheran (Orange) 6-2
The Lancers fell in a 3-2 thriller to new No. 6 Capistrano Valley in the title game of the Newport Elks tourney. They won on Tuesday 7-0 against JSerra of San Juan Capistrano in a Trinity League contest.
14. (NR) Central (Fresno) 9-1
Coach Brad Fontes’ team hasn’t yet played a schedule as strong as some others in the CIF Central Section, but if the Grizzlies can get past No. 11 Buchanan on Friday they’ll have a legit claim to be the section’s No. 1 team.
15. (NR) San Benito (Hollister) 8-1
Two-game sweeps against Monte Vista Christian of Watsonville and North Salinas keeps the Balers on a roll. Their only loss is to Archbishop Mitty, they have a win over Valley Christian of San Jose and have solid returnees from last year’s team that lost in the CIF Central Coast Section Division I final to Valley Christian.
16. (16) West Ranch (Valencia) 4-1
The Wildcats haven’t played since the last rankings were done so they did not move up.
17. (17) Woodcreek (Roseville) 3-0
This team, led by top hitter-pitcher Stephen Nogosek, also has been getting hot hitting in the early going from George Corp and Austin Blatnick.
18. (20) De La Salle (Concord) 2-2
A win against previous No. 6 Campolindo of Moraga allows the Spartans to receive a lift in this week’s rankings. Their losses are to No. 3 St. Francis and No. 9 Serra of San Mateo.
19. (NR) Canyon (Anaheim) 4-0
The Commanches have a quality win over Los Alamitos and will get a chance to make a major move next week since they play unbeaten Fountain Valley on Saturday.
20. (NR) Granite Hills (El Cajon) 2-1
Coach James Davis’ team has opened with wins over top programs La Costa Canyon and Poway. The only loss is to No. 4 Rancho Bernardo and on Thursday the team gets to play No. 1 Cathedral Catholic.
Teams That Dropped Out:
Previous No. 6 Campolindo (Moraga), No. 10 Vista, No. 12 Clovis, No. 13 Valley Christian (San Jose), No. 15 Long Beach Poly (Long Beach), No. 18 Clovis West (Fresno), No. 19 Lakewood.
Teams On The Bubble:
Agoura (Agoura Hills) 3-2, Archbishop Mitty (San Jose) 6-3, Bellarmine (San Jose) 6-2, Campolindo (Moraga) 1-3, Casa Grande (Petaluma) 5-1, Clovis 9-4, Clovis West (Fresno) 9-2, Clovis North (Clovis) 9-2, Huntington Beach 5-2, La Jolla Country Day (La Jolla) 4-0, Lincoln (Stockton) 5-0-1, Long Beach Poly (Long Beach) 7-4, Los Alamitos 4-2, Madera 6-2, Northview (Covina) 5-1, St. Mary’s (Stockton) 2-5, Valencia 4-1, Valley Christian (San Jose) 6-3, Vista 1-3.
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