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Sports briefs: Downey tennis defends title
Lady Vikings eager to defend SGVL championship; preseason opens Sept. 6.
WRITTEN BY :   Mark Fetter, Contributor

DOWNEY – The Downey High School girls’ tennis team is currently preparing for their fall season and is looking forward to defending their 2012 San Gabriel Valley League championship.
It was their first league title in school history.
Coach Denise Diego said “we have lots of new faces this year, and a larger team too.” Singles league champion Erin Freeman is back as is the third place doubles team of Elizabeth Aceves and Jessica Angell.
Third place finisher in singles Tara Kazimi is also back, as is Lauren Martinez.
The four players will be the foundation of this year’s Lady Viking team. Coach Diego is expecting “big things” from these returning league champs.
Downey gets their preseason started on Sept. 6 against Santa Fe at Santa Fe. The Lady Vikings will then host three straight non-league matches before league competition begins.
Downey will host Lakewood on Sept. 10, Millikan on Sept. 12 and Bellflower on Sept. 17.
The Lady Vikings will begin San Gabriel Valley League play on Sept. 20 against Lynwood.
Coach Diego maintains that Paramount and cross-town rival Warren will once again provide tough competition due to the quality of their respective programs.
Coach Diego and her team are excited for the new season to begin are looking forward to defending their crown. A strong league finish and nice run in C.I.F. are certainly the expectation for this year’s squad.
The Downey High School football season is almost here. Downey will open up their fall schedule at home against Orange Lutheran on Aug. 22 at 5 p.m.
The Vikings are the defending 2012 C.I.F. Southeast Division champions.
Downey returns several key offensive players from last year’s team, including junior quarterback Jorge Reyna who returns after a breakout sophomore season. Last season Reyna completed 98/168 passes for 1,567 yards.
Reyna threw 13 touchdown passes (against four interceptions) and ran for 1,003 yards on 130 carries, including six touchdowns. Reyna averaged close to eight yards (7.72) per rush attempt.
Junior running back Justin Huff also returns. Huff carried the ball 240 times last year for 2,364 rushing yards. He played in 13 of the Vikings’ 14 games, averaging close to 10 yards (9.85) per rush attempt and over 180 (181.8) yards per game on the ground.
Huff also had 24 receptions for 373 yards and two touchdowns.
Senior Eric Carrillo returns for his final season in cardinal and gold. Carrillo carried the ball 73 times last year for 444 yards and two touchdowns. Tristan Esparza, who caught 23 passes for 429 yards, also returns for his senior year.
Downey returns six offensive starters who helped average over 30 points (30.1) per game. The Vikings will also pull from a junior varsity team that finished with a 7-3 season record.
The Vikings will be without the services of standout receiver Jeremy Villa and kicker Mario Galvan. Both players graduated in June.
Villa had 31 catches for 551 yards and five touchdowns. Galvan converted 47/48 PAT’s and 8/13 field goals.
The Warren High School girls’ water polo team has spent many hours in the pool this summer. The Lady Bears started their summer workout program on June 24 and concluded July 25.
Returning players were entered in two weekly leagues and also played in an early summer tournament in June. Newcomers trained on the same days and played in a night league once a week to gain game time experience.
Coach Josie Cordero said that the Lady Bear water polo program added 18 newcomers this summer in addition to 10 returning players who also participated in the workouts.
Cordero has been very pleased with the continued improvement of Kayla Casas, Jocelyn Castro, Destiny Hernandez and Jojo Najera.
Cordero is also looking to Kim Shepherd, Marilyn Briseno, Whitney Pemberton and Natalie Manzanares to step up and solidify an already talented squad.
Before the opening game of the season, the varsity team will play in one or two night leagues in the fall. The entire team will then have an organized scrimmage in Irvine just prior to Thanksgiving as a final tune-up before the official season starts.
The first game of the season is against La Serna in early December.
The Lady Bears came up just short of a CIF title last year when they lost to second seeded Riverside Poly, 8-7, in the semifinal round of the C.I.F. Division V playoffs at Whittier College.
The Warren High School wrestling program has been working hard this summer in preparation for their winter season.
The Bears were in the weight room daily this summer from 8-9:15 a.m. and on Aug. 1 completed their six week workout schedule. They are now in their C.I.F. mandated three week “dead period.”
The summer program featured work groups each day in which one group would do a circuit workout while the other group would do a cardio workout. In the wrestling room, fundamentals and basics were reviewed. Fundamentals and basics were emphasized so younger/new wrestlers could learn proper technique.
Shots, stand ups and reversals were all drilled and reviewed. There was plenty of live wrestling but the emphasis was on situational training.
Assistant Coach Ryan Medina said that many wrestlers have been working hard this summer. Jacob Valdes, Brian Vives, Michael Mendoza, Adrian Duarte, Steve Aragon and Richard Medina are just a few of the names to watch out for this winter.
Coach Medina mentioned that Duarte, Aragon and Medina are currently at the J. Robinson 14-day Intensive Camp in Ashland, Oregon, honing their skills and getting better.
Paramount and cross-town rival Downey will once again provide tough competition.

Published: Aug. 8, 2013 – Volume 12 – Issue 17

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