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Prep soccer: CIF unveils postseason pairings

Five local girls teams, three local boys teams make playoffs

Posted: February 11, 2013 1:20 p.m.
Updated: February 11, 2013 1:20 p.m.
 

With Monday’s revealing of the boys and girls CIF-Southern Section playoff brackets, the postseason picture is complete for this year’s winter sports.

Four Foothill League girls soccer teams are in the postseason along with the Santa Clarita Christian girls.

On the boys side, the Foothill sent three teams to the playoffs.

The soccer brackets were released a day after the basketball playoff matchups were announced.

All five local girls soccer teams will play on Thursday in first-round matchups.

The Valencia girls (15-1-5), which won the Foothill title, hosts Moorpark (7-7-4) in the CIF-SS Division II bracket.

“I wouldn’t call it an easy draw,” said Valencia girls head coach Sean O’Connell. “It’s a third-place team (in the Marmonte League) and we’re playing at home and that’s great. We’re real confident going into playoffs.”

This year is the first the Foothill League has competed in Divsion II since the 2008-09 season, when Saugus won the division championship.

For the past three seasons, Foothill teams have competed in the more competitive Division I.

Regardless of the division, O’Connell said, “The road to the finals is, it’s going to take four complete, dominant games just to make it that far.”

Foothill runner-up Hart girls soccer (12-7-7) plays at home against San Marcos (7-3-4) in the same bracket.

Coming in as the third-place Foothill team, the Canyon girls (8-8-5) will face Palos Verdes Peninsula (11-5-6) on the road, also in Division II.

The final Foothill League representative in girls soccer is Saugus (18-4-3), which earned an at-large bid and will travel to face Westlake (15-2-1), the No. 4 seed in Division II.

In the Division VII bracket, Omega League champion Santa Clarita Christian (12-2-3) hosts Rolling Hills Prep (7-6-1) in the first round.

As for boys soccer, Foothill League champion Valencia (15-4-3) gets to host the winner of a wild-card game on Friday in CIF-SS Division IV.

The wild-card game is being played on Wednesday between Malibu (11-4-1) and Chino (13-11-1).

Similar to their female counterparts, the Foothill League moved down from Division III to Division IV this season.

“I’m hoping we can (make a run),” said Valencia boys head coach Tony Scalercio. “We’ll be prepared to make a run. I’m hoping we’ll be able to pull off a couple games and give ourselves a chance.”

Coming off the team’s first league title in school history, Scalercio said he doesn’t want to leave anything to chance in the playoffs.

“When it comes to playoff time, we’ll be doing a lot of scouting and by the time we play the teams, we’re going to have a lot of information on them,” he said.

As the Foothill’s second place team, the West Ranch (15-5-3) boys earned a home game against North Torrance (10-10-2) on Friday in Division IV.

The final boys team to make it in was Foothill third-place Hart (13-5-3), which will play at home against Workman High of Industry (10-7-3) in a wild-card game on Wednesday.

If Hart wins that game, it will go on the road to face Beverly Hills (15-6-2) in the first round on Friday.

“Anything is possible,” said Hart boys head coach Adonay Jovel. “We need to just play and keep our focus.”

All playoff games, with the exception of the final round, are initially scheduled to start at 5 p.m. unless a different time is mutually agreed upon.

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