CONCORD, CA (Apr. 23, 2022) — Clayton Valley Charter and De La Salle high schools have each held the No. 1 spot in Bay Area high school baseball rankings this season, albeit not for very long. Both Concord schools are in a battle for league honors and will be seeking high seeds as the North Coast Section playoffs beckon in May.
Clayton Valley Charter split their weekday Diablo Athletic League Foothill Division series with Benicia and College Park, the only two losses of the season for coach Casey Coakley’s squad. On the year the Ugly Eagles were 10-2 entering this week including a 4-2 Diablo Athletic League mark which trailed unbeaten Acalanes in the Foothill Division.
Among their non-league wins was a 3-2 victory over Buchanan of Clovis.
The Central Valley powerhouse handed De La Salle its first loss of the year by the same score. That hasn’t been a good score for David Jeans’ Spartans as their only other defeat was 3-2 to San Ramon Valley in an East Bay Athletic League game.
Early-season results have a top-heavy EBAL with Foothill undefeated and De La Salle, SRV and Granada all with one loss apiece.
This week De La Salle is in Las Vegas at the Bishop Gorman All Faiths Tournament facing top-flight opponents.
In mid-March, Clayton Valley Charter with righthander Jacob Craig tough on the mound (0.24 ERA) and one of Baseball America’s top catching prospects for the Class of 2023 Ryder Helfrick (.474 batting average with 11 stolen bases) leading the way, rose to the top of the Bay Area high school rankings. Their 5-4 loss to Benicia dropped the Ugly Eagles to second in the rankings behind DLS, which then lost the top spot after losing to San Ramon Valley.
In the DAL Valley Division coach Matt Harrod’s Concord team is 2-3 (5-9 overall). The coach says his team is competing hard. “Although our offense has been struggling, our pitching has been superb through the first half of the season. Paced by Matt Dashner, LJ Majarucon, Chase Taylor and Skylar Juarez, our staff has kept us in every game with an average ERA of 2.5. If we can find a way to get our offense clicking, we will be able finish the season strong in our last 10 games.”
Ygnacio Valley baseball lost a handful of lopsided games before shutting down for the season. Mt. Diablo also doesn’t have a varsity baseball team this year.
The DAL Foothill Division features College Park and Northgate in addition CVCHS. The Falcons are 3-3 I league and 7-5 overall while Northgate sports 2-4 and 7-8 marks.
League play concludes in mid-May in time for the North Coast Section playoffs to begin May 17-18. NorCal Regional games conclude the season June 4.
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.