Orange Coast Climbs Nine Spots to No. 9 This Week

Orange Coast Climbs Nine Spots to No. 9 This Week

State Poll

1. San Francisco (5-0, 21-1) — San Francisco has a state-leading 17-game win streak and it doesn't appear anyone in the Coast-North will be able to derail the Rams. With seven games remaining in the regular season, San Francisco will complete Round 1 of conference play on Wednesday when the Rams visit 11-11 Ohlone. The Rams only remaining challenge will be handling Foothill on the road on February 2.

2. San Diego City (3-0, 22-2) — The defending state champs ran its win streak to 15 games with wins over Grossmont and Southwestern. This week, the Knights pack their bags for road contests with 2-16 Imperial Valley and 5-13 San Diego Mesa. Other than San Diego City, Grossmont is the only other program with a record above .500.

3. Fresno City (6-0, 18-3) — Winners of 12 straight, Fresno City begins the week with a one-game lead over Columbia. The Rams got some breathing room from West Hills, our pick to compete for the conference title, when Columbia upset the Flacons, 76-71. This week, Fresno will make consecutive road trips, visiting 3-15 Merced on Wednesday and then 5-12 Cerro Coso on Saturday.

4. San Bernardino Valley (3-0, 19-4) – Winners of sis straight, the Wolverines host San Diego Miramar and Mt. San Jacinto (plays 1-15 Desert on Wednesday) this week — two teams who begin the week a game behind San Bernardino Valley in the race for the conference championship. A sweep by San Bernardino would virtually give the Wolverines a lock on the conference title.

5. Citrus (3-0, 20-3) — The Owls have won six straight since losing to Chaffey on December 20. Citrus hosts Antelope Valley (3-0, 13-10) in a key division game. We figured the division title would come down to these two teams, so the winner has a leg up for the conference title. The Marauders are on a three-game win streak after losing four of five headed into division play. Citrus also visits 8-12 Barstow this week.

6. Butte (4-0, 17-3) — Butte has also won six straight, and begins the week with a one-game lead on Shasta and a two-game lead over Feather River for the Golden Valley Conference title. In its only game this week, Butte visits 6-11 Lassen.

7. Santa Rosa (9-0, 16-4) — Santa Rosa has the state's third-longest win streak at 12 games. The Cubs are dominating the Big 8 Conference. With seven remaining games, Santa Rosa holds a two-game lead over Modesto and 2 ½ games over San Joaquin Delta. This week, Santa Rosa visits 2-16 Folsom Lake before returning home to take on 9-8 Delta.

8. Cerritos (2-0, 17-4) — Cerritos hosts LA Southwest (7-12) Wednesday before returning home to meet LA Harbor on Saturday. Cerritos and LA Harbor begin the week tied atop the South Coast-South division. LA Harbor meets 3-15 Compton before turning its attention to Cerritos. Winner of the Cerritos-LA Harbor game will have the inside track on the conference title.

9. Orange Coast (4-1, 13-7) — Well, we got one thing right. The Orange Empire Conference race is tough. What we got wrong was Orange Coast, which climbs nine spots this week. The Pirates are riding the high seas in style after winning four consecutive games. But it is hardly clear sailing. Orange Coast begins the week with a half-game lead over Fullerton which suffered its second conference loss (to unranked Santiago Canyon). Three teams are within a game of Orange Coast and seven —  that's right seven — are within two games, so come Saturday morning we could have a new conference leader. Even last place Santa Ana is just three games back. This week, Orange Coast hosts #14 Copper Mountain and 13-9 Irvine Valley. Irvine Valley handed Orange Coast its lone conference loss, 63-62, back on January 3. After this week, the Pirates play three of its final five games on the road, including games at Saddleback and Riverside. Currently, the Pirates are just 4-3 in road games against a host opponent.

10. Foothill (5-1, 16-6) — At 16-6, Foothill might just be the best second-place team in Northern California. Unfortunately, the Owls reside in the same conference as #1 San Francisco. Foothill begins the week just a game back of San Francisco and will host the Rams next week (February 2). First, the Owls need to dispatch 3-17 Chabot in its only game this week. Next week, Foothill championship hopes will be decided with a road game at Las Positas (where Las Positas is 7-2) and then a home game against San Francisco.

11. East Los Angeles (1-1, 16-5) — East Los Angeles tumbles this week all the way to No. 11 after suffering a 67-64 defeat to unranked Mt. San Antonio. The loss also bumped the Huskies out of a tie with Chaffey for first place in the South Coast-North. The Huskies will begin the week in a four-way tie for second place. This week, East LA returns home (where they are undefeated) to take on Rio Hondo and LA Trade Tech, before preparing for a showdown with Chaffey on the road next week.

12. Fullerton (4-2, 15-6) — Fullerton falls a spot after losing to unranked Santiago Canyon Fullerton begins the week a ½ game behind Orange Coast in the race for the Orange Empire Conference title. In the last two weeks, the Hornets have lost eight spots in the CCCMBCA poll. Fullerton has six games remaining, including three consecutive games on the road. Hornets have not been stellar on the road – going 4-3. This week, though, Fullerton will host Santa Ana on Friday in its only game this week.

13. Yuba (8-1, 16-5) — Yuba climbs one spot this week as it rides a seven-game winning streak. The 49'ers hold a half-game lead on Napa Valley as the race for the Bay Valley Conference title has become a two-team affair. Two other teams – Los Medanos and Contra Costa – begin the week three games back. This week, Yuba hosts 12-8 Los Medanos before visiting 7-13 Solano.

14. Copper Mountain (3-2, 16-6) — Copper Mountain can get back into the thick of the Orange Empire Conference race on Wednesday with a win at #8 Orange Coast. The Fightin' Cacti begin the week 1 ½ games behind Orange Coast and in a two-way tie with Saddleback at 3-2. Copper Mountain, which is 1-4 on the road, is 4-3 in its last eight games. Fightin' Cacti is coming off a 74-72 setback at Fullerton. In addition to its showdown with Orange Coast, Copper Mountain hosts Cypress on Friday. The Fightin Cacti are perfect at home at 6-0.

15. Gavilan (4-1, 18-2) — Gavilan, losers of just two games, manages to climb a spot in this week's poll. The Rams begin the week in a tie for first place after handing Hartnell an 86-75 loss last Friday. This week, Gavilan visits 4-14 San Jose before returning home to host 11-10 West Valley. Carbrillo, which gave Gavilan its lone conference loss, sits within striking distance at 3-2. In a key conference game this week, Cabrillo hosts Hartnell on Friday. Winner remains in striking distance of Gavilan, loser could see conference championship hopes fade.

16. Columbia (5-1, 11-5) — Columbia climbs four spots this week after its upset of previous #5 West Hills. With the upset comes the chance to unseat Fresno from its dominance of the Central Valley Conference trophy.  The Claim Jumpers open the week one game behind Fresno City. This week, Columbia travels to Cerro Coso before returning home to take on Sequoias, which at 4-2 sits a game behind Columbia.

17. West Hills (4-2, 13-4) — West Hills falls 12 slots after losing both games last week, including 76-71 to previous #20 Columbia. Ironic considering a few nights before West Hills nearly stunned Fresno City, eventually losing 84-83 at Fresno. But last week is the least of West Hills problems as Sequoias visits on Wednesday in a key conference game. The loser of this game will drop to fourth place and a game further behind Fresno City. Needless to say, this is a huge game for both Sequoias, winners of four straight, and West Hills.

18. Ventura (2-0, 14-7) — Despite winning its lone game last week, the Pirates fall three spots this week. May have less to do about Ventura's on-court performance and more about the conference. Ventura and Allan Hancock are the only teams in the Western State-North with a winning percentage above .500. The Pirates, who hold a one-game lead on four teams, hosts 3-8 Oxnard on Wednesday before traveling to 1-14 Santa Barbara. Even Cuesta, which has been ranked on a few occasions this year, is struggling, having lost three of its last four games.

19. Chaffey (2-0, 14-7) — Chaffey makes its first appearance in the state poll this week at #19. Thanks to Mt. San Antonio's upset of East LA, the Panthers begin the week atop of the South Coast-North division. Chaffey has won eight of its last 10 games, including both of its first two divisional contests. Chaffey, which has a showdown looming with East LA (at home) next week, will visit 6-10 LA Trade Tech before returning home to host 8-11 Pasadena. 

20. Modesto (7-2, 14-7) — Modesto lands the final spot in this week's poll, edging Hartnell (by 1 point), Sequoias (by 3) and Napa Valley (by 4). Modesto, which trails Santa Rosa by two games in the race for the conference title, has won seven of its last eight games. In its only game this week, the Pirates visit Diablo Valley on Tuesday to begin the final round of conference games. Modesto beat the Vikings 81-78 on December 28.

Northern California
1. San Francisco
2. Fresno City
3. Butte
4. Santa Rosa
5. Foothill
6. Yuba
7. Gavilan
8. Columbia
9. West Hills
10. Modesto
11. Hartnell
12. Sequoias
13. Napa Valley
14. Cabrillo
15. San Joaquin Delta/Shasta/Feather River 

Southern California
1. San Diego City
2. San Bernardino Valley
3. Citrus
4. Cerritos
5. Orange Coast
6. East Los Angeles
7. Fullerton
8. Copper Mountain
9. Ventura
10. Chaffey
11. Saddleback
12. Santiago Canyon
13. San Diego Miramar
14. Los Angeles Harbor
15. West Los Angeles/Grossmont

(Courtesy of

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