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Posted: January 17, 2009 10:46 p.m.
Updated: January 18, 2009 4:55 a.m.
 
You want crazy, the Foothill League will give you crazy - Michael Jackson crazy.

You got scandal, surprise and lots of scoring - all in week one of the winter season.

There's a lot of shakeout as well.

Both Canyon's and Hart's girls basketball teams were hit by falsification of residency records, ultimately changing the face of the league season.

Canyon lost 11 games, its coach, Stan Delus and two players - Vanessa Aguilar and Alexa Davison.

Hart lost its best all-around player in Amanda Corona.

With Aguilar and Corona gone, that opens up the field more for all-league status, but it also opens the door for other teams to win the Foothill League title.

The biggest beneficiary might be the Saugus girls basketball team.

Previously overlooked, the Centurions pulled off two victories this week - an upset win over Valencia on Tuesday and Friday's 50-34 win over West Ranch.

With the Centurions being the only undefeated squad in the Foothill, they appear to be the most sound team after one week.

But ...

"Nothing's pretty in this league," said Saugus head coach Kent Eaton. "Canyon still has some players. They can show up and play teams in league. No one's going to roll over on us. If we get complacent, we could get knocked off."

Not the way Nicole Hicks and Gabby Conn are playing.

Hicks broke the school's all-time steals record Friday night and Conn pulled down 22 rebounds.

Hicks picked up three steals Friday night, which puts her at 345.

Annmarie Summerhays was the previous record-holder at 343. Summerhays graduated in 2003.

Eaton was quick to point out, though, that the contributions are also coming from Kaylynn Martin, Amanda Scholl and Kaitlyn Smither.

Also on Friday, Canyon showed it wasn't out of it.

The Cowboys defeated Golden Valley 79-18 and Brooke Lemar scored 30 points.

"They played great, just excellent together," said interim Canyon head coach Todd Jackson. "They were up for the challenge. They played with a lot of determination."

As did Valencia boys basketball player Lonnie Jackson.

To score 30 points in a Foothill League game is the equivalent of scoring at least 40 in a non-league game because the competition's so fierce.

Jackson scored 30 points in a losing effort against Hart.
The fact that Valencia, after the 75-70 defeat, is 0-2 in the Foothill League is a surprise.

The Vikings were the fifth-ranked team in CIF-Southern Section Division II-AA last week.

That will likely change next week.

Changing minds is the Canyon boys soccer team.

After Golden Valley pounded Hart 6-1 Tuesday, it set up a big game between Canyon and the Grizzlies Friday.

The Cowboys took that game 1-0 on a goal by Alex McCaslin.

"We had a goal as a team this week. We really know how important it is not to lose in the first week," said Canyon head coach Khris Savage. "In years past, we feel as a program, we've made silly mistakes that have cost us points and that would cost us in week five."

The Cowboys are the only team at 2-0.

Yet there's still a lot to be determined.

Like with Saugus, which started the season 3-8-2, but has tied its first two league games.

"We've been saying there's a lot of parity," said Saugus head coach Seth Groller. "It's really showing through for us."

Canyon and Valencia are the only two 2-0 teams on the girls soccer side.

The Cowboys have the biggest challenge coming, though, as they face Hart, Saugus, then Valencia. All three teams own at least one win.

"Now comes the meat of our schedule," said Canyon head coach Eric White. "We'll see what we're made of."

Soccer took a backseat to basketball this week, because of the aforementioned craziness.

But one big bright spot was the play of Saugus' Jamie Molacek.

Molacek made four goals in two league games.

Cary Osborne is The Signal's sports editor. He can be reached at cosborne@the-signal.com. His views reflect his own and not necessarily those of The Signal. Tevor Sojka contributed to this column.


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