The San Luis Obispo girls soccer team is off to an undefeated start to the 2017 season and looking to continue a run of unprecedented success over the last two seasons.
The Tigers, a team that has gone 47-4-2 over the last two seasons, went 27-2-1 (14-0 PAC 8) and made it all the way to the CIF Southern Cal Regional Division 3 Championship game two seasons ago. Last season, they followed that up with a 20-2-1 (13-1 PAC 8) season, but were upset in the first round of the CIF-Southern Section Division 2 playoffs.
There are still plenty of players who were around for those great runs. Junior Olivia Ortiz was a key player on both of those teams and the speedy striker already has five of SLO High’s nine goals this season, helping the Tigers to a 3-0 start and a 9-to-1 goal differential.
Senior goalkeeper Eislee Sohner and midfielder Amelia Corpuz-Carr are also expected to help SLO High and second-year head coach Brittney Viboch compete for a third-straight league title against top contenders Atascadero and Arroyo Grande.
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Paso Robles (4-0-2) is off to an early undefeated start in boys soccer. The Bearcats opened the season against Nipomo two weeks ago and got four goals from junior Erick Reyes on the way to a 5-1 win.
Paso Robles finished third in the PAC 8 last season behind second-place Arroyo Grande and first-place SLO High. Paso Robles will play Templeton on Tuesday while SLO High (1-0) plays its second game of the season against Santa Ynez.
Basketball season in full swing
The boys and girls basketball seasons are off and running. Most teams have been playing in holiday tournaments around the state. SLO High (5-1) got to host games in the Morro Bay holiday tournament last week and had a solid showing going 3-1 and finishing third.
Defending PAC 8 champs Mission Prep have yet to start their season. The Royals play their first game Wednesday against Monte Vista Christian in a tournament at the Stevenson School in Pebble Beach.
On the girls side, SLO High and Mission Prep are both off to undefeated starts to their seasons after going 3-0 at the Atascadero holiday tournament.
Led by junior guard Lily Svetich, SLO High had convincing wins over Dos Pueblos, Morro Bay and Santa Ynez. Mission Prep had a 45-44 win over Santa Ynez, but finished off the tournament with a 72-point win over Dos Pueblos. Paso Robles went 2-1 in the tournament, and Kim Buchanan and Sydney Meneses were named to the All-Tournament Team.
The SLO High, Arroyo Grande, Atascadero, Nipomo, Templeton and Paso Robles girls teams will all be playing in the Holiday Classic tournament this week starting on Wednesday at SLO High.
Mission Prep Christmas Classic shrinks
The lineup for the 2017 Mission Prep Christmas Classic Basketball Tournament was announced, and its much smaller than in years past. Only six teams are playing in the tournament this season after 16 played in the longtime event last year.
Mission Prep said the Dec. 15 start of the tournament conflicted with exam schedules for some teams, leading to the drop.
Top-ranked Bishop Montgomery, the defending tournament and CIF state Open Division boys’ basketball champions led by UCLA-commit David Singleton, will be back this season along with West Ranch, Mission Hills, El Camino Real, British Columbia Christian Academy and the host Royals.
Cal Poly leading Commissioner’s Cup
Despite a 1-10 football season, Cal Poly leads the Big West Commissioner’s Cup race following the competition of the fall sports season. The Commissioner’s Cup gives points to each Big West sports team depending on where they finish in the standings.
Cal Poly (125 points) leads UC Santa Barbara (117) and UC Davis (115) on the strength of a Big West title in women’s volleyball and men’s cross country. Cal Poly also finished second in women’s cross country and tied for seventh place in both men’s and women’s soccer.
Cal Poly has never won the Big West Commissioner’s Cup, an award that started in 1998.
Perfect from the Fields
Sure, the college basketball season is young, but Cal Poly junior guard Donovan Fields still holds a distinct national honor through the Mustangs first eight games.
Fields is a perfect 25-for-25 from the free throw line this season, ranking him first in the nation in free throw percentage. Three other players in the country are perfect from the charity stripe, but none have made more shots than Fields.
The record for consecutive made free throws at Cal Poly in one year is 32, set by Lorenzo Keeler during the 2009-10 season.
Fields will look to keep the streak going Saturday when the Mustangs host Fresno State.
Straight Down Fall Classic
San Luis Obispo’s Mike Rowley and professional partner Jason Ballard won the 21st-annual Straight Down Fall Classic on Sunday by defeating defending champions Bryce Molder, a PGA Tour player, and Jim Strickland in a one-hole playoff at the San Luis Obispo Country Club.
Both teams were tied after 36 holes of regulation with scores of 11 under par before Rowley made the only par on the tough 18th hole to secure the victory in the playoff. It marks the fifth time Rowley has won. Ballard pocketed $20,000 as the professional on the winning team. Rowley won previously with Roger Tambellini (1999, 2002, 2007) and Loren Roberts (2010).
The PGA’s Tour’s Ricky Barnes and partner Andrew Medley finished in a tie for third with Tim Fleming and Alan Bratton from Oklahoma City Golf Club. Nick Watney and partner Jordan Scott were tied for fifth with PGA Tour rookie Brandon Harkins and Verna Tony of the Olympic Club.