Clayton Valley Charter boys basketball makes history as local schools tally 5 North Coast Section championships

Clayton Valley Charter boys basketball makes history as local schools tally 5 North Coast Section championships

Clayton Valley Charter boys basketball makes history as local schools tally 5 North Coast Section championships
Clayton Valley Charter 2021-22 basketball is now part of the Concord school’s sports ­history after the Ugly Eagles won the school’s first-ever North Coast Section boys ­championship for coach Frank Allocco Jr. (second from right). (Photo courtesy CVCHS Athletics)

CONCORD, CA (Mar. 30, 2022) — Clayton Valley Charter High School has a distinguished basketball tradition going back to its early years with Hall of Fame coach Bruce Iversen and his rosters of standout players topped by Bob Thomason through the recent past when coach Eric Bamberger and CVCHS had the top seeded team in North Coast Section.

But none of those teams accomplished what second-year coach Frank Allocco Jr. and his Ugly Eagles boys did this month. And that’s win a North Coast Section championship. Clayton Valley Charter defeated Dougherty Valley of San Ramon 76-71 to capture the Division I title and etch their names in the school history books.

Ugly Eagles basketball was joined by De La Salle wrestling and Carondelet basketball claiming NCS titles. The Spartan and Cougar soccer teams also won Section soccer titles for a large haul of hardware by local schools.

More history was made locally when Mt. Diablo High girls basketball, knocked out of NCS Division V in the semi-finals, gained a berth in the Northern California playoffs for the first time ever and coach Ronnie McGee’s team won its NoCal first game before being eliminated in the quarterfinals.

Clayton Valley Boy hoopsters No. 1

CVCHS finished fourth in the super competitive Diablo Athletic League behind Campolindo, Miramonte and Northgate, all of whom were placed in the six-team NCS Open Division playoffs. Campo won the DAL and NCS championships before losing in the Northern California championship game last week.

Allocco says, “I am so proud of how much this team has trusted me and the process throughout the challenges of the pandemic and also us losing some games early in the season. [Note: The Ugly Eagles lost three of their first four DAL games.]

“They never wavered and trusted that we would play our best basketball when it mattered, and we certainly had a great run culminating in a section championship. This team has set the standard that all future Clayton Valley basketball players will strive to reach!”

The 76 points Clayton Valley Charter scored in the NCS championship game were the most they tallied all season as Allocco has brought the same defensive-minded philosophy his father used to win State championships at both Northgate and De La Salle.

Following their NCS title, CVCHS was placed in Division I at NorCals as the 14th seed. They lost a heart-breaking 43-37 overtime game to third seed and eventual finalist St. Ignatius of San Francisco after a spirited rally in the fourth quarter by the Ugly Eagles forced the extra period.

The only other CVCHS basketball team to win a Section title was the 1997-98 girls who were Division II champs.
De La Salle and new coach Marcus Schroeder were second in the regular league season, won the East Bay Athletic League tournament and were seeded second in the Section’s Open Division. They lost the NCS championship game 51-50 to Campolindo after leading 31-25 at halftime. The Spartan then fell in the opening round of the NorCal Open Division 57-52 to Archbishop Riordan of San Francisco.

Carondelet teams reign in NCS

Carondelet basketball won two games as the No. 1 seed in NCS Open Division including a 20-point win over EBAL rival San Ramon Valley in the championship game. That moved the Cougars into the NorCal Open Division where they defeated Oak Ridge of El Dorado Hills in the Regional semi-finals before falling to Archbishop Mitty of San Jose in the finals.

Carondelet won its second NCS championship in the past three Division I Section tournaments with a 3-0 victory over EBAL rival California. (Photo courtesy Carondelet High Athletics)

The Cougars of coach Kelly Sopak handed Mitty its only loss of the season before the State playoffs in a December tournament, but the Monarchs turned the tables on the Concord school last week at NorCal with strong first and third quarters for the margin of victory. Sierra Canyon then routed Mitty in the State championship game last weekend.

Carondelet soccer missed out on a league title to archrival Monte Vista, but the Cougars won their second title in the past three NCS tournaments by defeating surprising 12th seed California of San Ramon in the finals 3-0. Monte Vista was stunned by 16th seed Granada of Livermore in the first round.

At NorCals, coach Amy Apodaca’s Carondelet lost to seventh seed Saint Francis of Mountain View in the Open Division opening round.

De La Salle soccer claims 14th NCS soccer title

De La Salle is a perennial soccer power in North Coast Section, winning six successive championships from 2009-14. Since then, the Spartans had won only one title while taking second three other times. That streak ended with a 2-1 win over 2020 (most recent) NCS champ Montgomery of San Diego last month. In the NCS semi-finals a second-half goal gave DLS a 1-0 win over DAL league champions Clayton Valley Charter.

De La Salle now has 14 North Coast Section soccer championships after the Spartans ­defeated Montgomery of Santa Rosa 2-1 in the section finals. The Spartans then won their first game ever at NorCal Regionals. (Photo courtesy De La Salle High Athletics)

DLS went to the NorCal playoffs as the third seed in the top division and won its opener 4-3 in overtime over Sanger. Their semi-final game also ended tied after regulation and overtime. Watsonville defeated the Spartans 7-6 in a shootout to move on to the championship game.

Coach Derricke Brown says, “The team embraced the struggles from the early part of the season and came together as a family because of that rough patch. This group truly enjoyed spending time with each other and really that is the dream scenario for any group that I work with. It was an amazing year on the field because of this – another EBAL title, our 14th NCS championship and the first NorCal regional win for the program!”

Jay Bedecarré
Jay Bedecarré
Sports and Schools Editor at The Concord Clayton Pioneer | | Website

Jay Bedecarré is a long-time resident and writer in Concord and Clayton. He began his newspaper writing career while still a senior at Mt. Diablo High School and he has been part of The Pioneer since its inception in 2003. Jay also operates Bay Area Festivals, presenting events around the San Francisco Bay Area including Bay Area KidFest annually in Downtown Concord.