El Cajon, CA
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Articles by Phillip Brents

The San Diego Section’s new divisional playoff format for baseball — based on competition level instead of student enrollment — appears to have provided just what it was designed to do: create a level playing field.

In the play-in round, held on May 21, eight lower-seeded teams emerged victorious; in the opening round of double-elimination play on May 22, 10 lower-seeded teams won.

Those are significant numbers.

At the conclusion of the 10th annual Mustang/Phair Co. Relays, Monte Vista junior Jemeil Jackson had something dangling from his neck that few student-athletes at the 20-team track and field invitational could boast about: four gold medals.

Jackson captured first-place finishes in the boys 4x100-meter relay (43.46), sprint medley relay (1:36.85), 300 open dash (36.19) and 4x400 relay (3:34.97) at the April 20 event held at Otay Ranch High School.

CIF-Metro Conference champion West Hills High School roller hockey team has a new home next season with the opening of a new skating rink in El Cajon. Wolf Pack coach Steve Baldwin said he hopes the relocation of Skate San Diego from National City to East County helps rekindle interest in the sport locally.

The Steele Canyon Cougars and Helix Highlanders each proved they are worthy contenders for this year’s Grossmont Hills League track and field championship title when they met on the oval last Thursday, March 21, at Helix High School.

It seemed only appropriate that in his last game as a San Diego Socker that Grossmont High School alumnus Paul Wright, the team’s ageless veteran, would score the team’s opening goal in its latest major indoor soccer championship.

“This has got to be the best feeling,” said Wright, 43, amid post-game hoopla on the arena floor of the Valley View Casino Center following the Sockers’ come-from-behind 8-6 victory against the Detroit Waza Flo March 11 in the finals of the Ron Newman Cup.

The West Hills Wolf Pack roller hockey team capped a thrilling end to the 2012-13 CIF-Metro Conference season by capturing a 6-5 overtime decision over the top-seeded Rancho Bernardo Broncos on Feb. 27 at the Escondido Sports Center.

The Broncos had entered the Kiwanis Cup championship game boasting an imposing 21-1 record, with their lone loss to the second-seeded Wolf Pack. West Hills and Rancho Bernardo split their two regular season games, setting up a winner-take-all finale.

The Valhalla High School boys soccer team has proven it can win marathon matches, now the goal for the Norsemen is to go the distance by qualifying for this weekend’s San Diego Section Division II championship match.

The 41st annual CIF state boys wrestling championships, scheduled Friday and Saturday at Rabobank Arena in Bakersfield will include a pair of Grossmont Conference standouts: West Hills senior John Lancaster and Mt. Miguel junior Miracle Tausaga.

Both Lancaster and Tausaga qualified to compete by placing among the top three place-finishers in their respective weight classes at last weekend’s San Diego Masters state qualifying tournament at Eastlake High School.

The family that wrestles together, well … wins CIF championships, at least where the Tausaga clan from Mt. Miguel High School is concerned.

Last weekend, cousins Miracle and Josh Tausaga captured individual weight class championships at the San Diego Section Division IV finals at Mater Dei Catholic High School. Miracle, a junior, captured the 220-pound division while Josh, a senior, won the 285-pound heavyweight class.

Adam Krzywicki left his mark as a wrestler at Monte Vista High School, where he later served as an assistant coach for 10 years.

He’s begun to create a new legacy as a first-year head coach at Helix High School.
Things definitely appear to be looking up for the Highlanders. When team scores were announced midway through last Saturday’s South Bay Invitational tournament at Otay Ranch High School, Krzywicki’s troops — drum roll — were at the top of the list.