East Bay Athletic League championship basketball and soccer teams from De La Salle received the top seed in their respective sports for the North Coast Section playoffs that get underway this week. Carondelet basketball is No.1 in girls Division I while the Cougars soccer team is seeded second to EBAL nemesis Monte Vista.
Clayton Valley Charter and Northgate each qualified all its basketball and soccer teams in NCS, Ygnacio Valley qualified three of four teams while both Concord High soccer teams are in the tournament.
De La Salle avenged its only EBAL loss to Dublin by edging the host Gaels 64-62 to end the season at 12-1, the same record as Dublin. That gave the Spartans the No. 1 D-I basketball seed and they host No. 16 Irvington Tuesday in Concord.
CVCHS is 12th seeded in D-I and travels to Pleasant Hill for a Tuesday game against College Park. The Falcons own a pair of league wins over the Ugly Eagles.
Northgate grabbed the seventh seed in D-II and hosted Newark Memorial in the first round Tuesday. Ygnacio Valley is 14th seed in D-IV and travel to Albany for a game against #3 St. Mary’s in the first round.
On the girls side, Carondelet is seeking its fourth successive NCS title and the third in a row in Division I. The Cougars open NCS against league rival Monte Vista, who they beat in a late January clash.
CVCHS travels to San Ramon to meet No. 4 California in their Tuesday D-I opener. Northgate is also a 13th seed and face Acalanes in its first D-II in Lafayette.
Ygnacio Valley girls basketball heads to San Francisco to meet Lick Wilmerding in a first-round D-IV tussle.
NCS playoffs run through championship games Feb. 22-23. NorCal playoffs are Feb. 26 – Mar. 5 with the State Championship games Mar. 22-23.
Last year, De La Salle broke a three-year drought from winning NCS Division I soccer titles and are favored to take a 14th Section championship this winter. They open play Wednesday hosting long-time rival Pittsburg.
CVCHS is seeded sixth in D-I boys and face visiting San Leandro Wednesday.
In D-II Northgate has Vallejo coming to the Broncos field while Concord High will host Alameda in a pair of Wednesday games under the lights.
Ygnacio Valley was successful in appealing its placement to D-III and the third-seeded Warriors square off with Analy of Sebastopol in Concord Wednesday.
Carondelet managed a 1-1 draw in their first meeting this season with Monte Vista before losing 3-2 at the end of January. The Mustangs are No. 1 and Cougars No. 2 in the seedings. Carondelet has taken second in NCS the past three years and hope to move up one position this year.
Clayton Valley Charter girls are seventh seeds but head to Union city to meet No. 10 James Logan in the first round.
Northgate is seeded third and Concord 14th in the D-II bracket. The DAL foes meet in Walnut Creek this Wednesday in a first-round NCS clash.
The NCS playoffs finish Feb. 23 with the second annual Northern California championships are Feb. 26 – Mar. 2.
De La Salle dominated the NCS Division I East Bay team dual championships early this month with four lopsided wins including a63-12 win over Liberty in the championship match. They earlier beat James Logan and American for their fifth straight Section title and 12th in 13 years.
The Spartans won the EBAL championship last weekend as they prepare for the NCS championships this Friday and Saturday at James Logan as they seek a fifth straight title. The top three placers in each weight category qualify for the State Meet in Bakersfield the following week.
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.