The open division of the L.A. City boys basketball playoffs went just as expected in the opening found, with the top four seeded teams facing of in the semifinals Feb. 27 at Roybal Learning Center.
The winners advance to the championship game March 5 at Cal State Dominguez Hills.
Top seed Westchester will face Dorsey in the 8 p.m. game. Westchester defeated El Camino real, 54-44, Feb. 20. Dorsey defeated Taft, 76-64 in the opening round.
In the 6 p.m. game, number two Narbonne will face Fairfax. Narbonne defeated Birmingham, 76-69, and Fairfax survived a defensive battle against George Washington Prep, 38-36.
In Division I, four area teams will battle in the semifinals at Roybal Learning Center Feb. 27.
Top seed Fremont faces Crenshaw at noon and third seed Hamilton faces seventh seed Gardena at 10 a.m.
Fremont defeated Sylmar, 76-54 in the quarterfinals Feb. 20 and Crenshaw defeated University, 99-91.
Hamilton defeated Palisades, 60-56, and Gardena upset View Park, 65-57.
Divisions II, III, IV and V played their quarterfinal games Feb. 24 and results weren’t available at presstime.
In the L.A. City girls open division, South Gate Legacy is the only area team that survived the first round.
Legacy defeated Taft, 58-26, in the opening round and will face Palisades at 2 p.m. Feb. 27. Palisades was an 81-53 winner over Carson.
Granada Hills faces El Camino Real in the other semifinal.
In the girls Division 1 bracket, Garfield plays Narbonne at 8 p.m. Feb. 26 at Roybal Learning Center.
Garfield defeated Sylmar, 63-44 in the opening round while Narbonne was defeating University, 35-30.
In the other semifinal at 6 p.m., Westchester plays Poly. Westchester defeated San Pedro, 48-38, and Poly defeated Birmingham, 45-31.
In Division III, South Gate is coming off two overwhelming victories entering the semifinal Feb. 26 against Valley Academy of the Arts at 8 p.m. at Bernstein High School.
Of the 26 area teams that opened play last week in the Southern Section boys basketball playoffs, only four are left standing going in to the semifinal round Feb. 26.
St. John Bosco remains alive in the 1AA Division after a 68-54 win over Valencia Feb. 23. In Division 2A, Lynwood advanced by defeating Whittier, 73-55.
In Division 4AA, Gardena Serra defeated JSerra, 84-76.
Price, in Division 6, advanced to the semifinals with a 100-35 trouncing of Santa Barbara Providence.
The semifinals will be played at 7 p.m. Feb. 26 with St. John Bosco hosting Riverside J.W. North, Lynwood will face Hart, Serra will face San Gabriel Academy and Price will face Christa McAuliffe.
In the Southern Section girls playoff, the quarterfinals games were all played Feb. 24, leading up to the semifinals Feb. 27.
GARRETT TO SPEAK: USC’s first Heisman Trophy winner Mike Garrett will be the keynote speaker at East Side Spirit and Pride’s annual Scholarship Dinner and Gala at 6 p.m. March 5 at Cal State Los Angeles’ Golden Eagle Ballrooms.
East Side Spirit and Pride is a group of mostly East Los Angeles College alumni and students who raise money to provide scholarships for ELAC students, including many of whom transfer to Cal State L.A.
Garrett is the newly appointed executive director for athletics at Cal State L.A. He was athletic director at USC from 1993 until 2010. Afterward, he held a similar position at Langston University in Langston, Okla. until last year.
Raised in the Maravilla and Aliso Village housing projects of East Los Angeles, Garrett starred at Roosevelt High School before going on to stardom at USC. As a pro, he played eight seasons with the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Diego Chargers. He played in the first Super Bowl and helped Kansas City defeat Minnesota in Super Bowl IV.
After retiring from football, he received a juris doctor degree from Western State University College of Law.
East Side Spirit and Pride will honor another highly decorated athlete from East Los Angeles in Paul Gonzales, a 1984 Olympic boxing gold medalist. Gonzales, the first Mexican-American athlete to win an Olympic gold medal, will be awarded ESSP’s Celebrate Me Home alumni award.
Former ELAC President Ernest Moreno, a member of the Los Angeles Community College District Board of Trustees and a 42-year employee of the district, will be presented a Lifetime Achievement Award for his service to higher education, including the 17 years he served as president.
Tickets are $65 each and $30 for students and may be purchased by calling Susan Okawa in ELAC’s administrative services office at (323) 265-8669.
TIGER SPECULATION: With six weeks remaining before golf’s first major tournament of the year, the speculation about the status of Tiger Woods increased this week.
Golf writer Robert Lusetich got it going by writing that Woods is struggling to move, that he can’t walk for long periods of time and that he sits reclined when he rides in a car to take pressure of his back, which has been operated on three times.
Woods’ camp was quick to respond. His agent Mark Steinberg called the reports ridiculous and false.
“It’s reprehensible that every few months someone makes something up and it’s treated like a real story,” Steinberg said. “Tiger continues to work on his rehabilitation and we will have an accurate update at the appropriate time.”
Notah Begay, who played golf with Woods at Stanford and remains close friends with him, told Tim Rosaforte of the Golf Channel that Woods’ condition is actually improving. Davis Love III, who will capture the U.S. Ryder Cup team this year, said Woods is “making progress.”
Woods hasn’t played on the PGA Tour since last August.
His world ranking has dropped to 445th and he last won a golf tournament in 2013. That year he won tournaments and was chosen PGA Player of the Year.
He remains two tournament wins shy of Sam Snead’s record of 81 and his 14 major wins continue to trail Jack Nicklaus’ 18.
RANDOM THOGHTS: Los Angeles Dodgers pitchers and catchers reported to spring training Feb. 18 and the rest of the roster checked in Feb. 24. The first full roster workout is Feb. 25.
Different preseason forecasts have the Arizona Diamondbacks and the San Francisco Giants winning the National League West this year, but the Dodgers have a deep roster and figure to contend for their fourth straight division championship, something the Dodgers never have accomplished since divisional play started in 1969. …
It looks like the San Diego Chargers will be moving north next year, after all. Chargers ownership announced plans Feb. 23 to build a new stadium, tied in with the expansion of the San Diego Convention Center in downtown San Diego. San Diego’s mayor and county leaders immediately issued a statement that they wanted the new stadium built near the current stadium in the Mission Valley section of the city. A ballot measure will decide the Chargers’ ultimate fate, but if the two sides can’t agree on a location, get ready for the Chargers to follow the Rams to Inglewood. …
Speaking of the Rams, they will conduct their off-season workouts in Oxnard at the River Ridge Fields. The Dallas Cowboys have used those facilities for their summer training camp and are in the second year of a three-year deal to continue training camp there, so the Rams still need to find a place for their training camp, but that is five months away. …
While on the subject of the National Football League, the annual scouting combine began Feb. 23 in Indianapolis. Nine UCLA Bruins and seven USC Trojans are among the more than 300 former college players who will be interviewed, examined and tested by all 32 teams in the next week.
The Bruins contingent includes linebacker Myles Jack, defensive lineman Kenny Clark, running back Paul Perkins, receiver Jordan Payton, tight end Thomas Duarte, kicker Ka’imi Fairbairn and offensive linemen Caleb Benenoch, Jake Brendel and Alex Redmond.
USC is represented by linebacker Su’a Cravens, quarterback Cody Kessler, running back Tre Madden, fullback Soma Vainuku, center Max Tuerk, defensive lineman Antwaun Woods and cornerback Kevon Seymour.
How big a deal is the combine? The Rams have 65 employees in Indianapolis this week.