January

•Chino Hills resident Tristian Vizcaino, a 2014 graduate of Damien High School, makes his NFL debut as a kicker with the San Francisco 49ers. Vizcaino signed with the team Jan. 1 as a COVID replacement for 49ers regular kicker Robbie Gould. He finishes with field goals of 36-, 47- and 33-yards and made a late fourth-quarter extra-point attempt to finish with 10 points in the 49ers’ 26-23 loss to the Minnesota Vikings. Later this year, he signs with the Los Angeles Chargers and plays in six games before being waived by the team before Week 7. 

•A Lifestream blood drive honors longtime Chino High School football volunteer and equipment manager Alex Arellano, who died in August 2020 after a battle with cancer. The 77-year-old Arellano began volunteering at Chino High football games in 1978, and became the team’s equipment manager in 1987, a job he held throughout the 2019 season. “What he lived for was Chino High football,” said grandson and former Chino High football player Alex Arellano.

•Chino Hills resident LaMelo Ball, a rookie with the Charlotte Hornets, becomes the youngest player in NBA history (19 years, 140 days) to record a triple-double with 22 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists in a 113-105 win over the Atlanta Hawks. “It feels great. We got the win, so I’m feeling great right now,” Ball said “It’s just basketball. I’m doing what I love. I’ve been doing this ever since I was three. It comes quite easy to me.” Later this month, Ball is named Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month. 

•Chino Valley student-athletes and parents from Ayala, Chino, Chino Hills, Don Lugo and Ontario Christian high schools hold a “Let Them Play” rally at Grand Avenue and Peyton Drive in Chino Hills, which was one of 140 similar gatherings held in California to get the message to state officials that sports competition need to return as quickly as possible. High school sports were cancelled in mid-March 2020 when the coronavirus pandemic began. The high school season resumes in February.

•Chino Hills High graduate Onyeka Okongwu, a 6-foot-9 forward and No. 6-overall selection in the 2020 NBA Draft by the Atlanta Hawks, scores four points, has five rebounds and two assists in 14 minutes in his NBA debut. “It was fun for me just to be out there finally getting to play,” Okongwu said during the postgame press conference. “I haven’t played a game since last February so just being out there and playing meaning the world to me.”

•Ayala High graduate and Indiana University freshman Mikaela Ramirez places 16th in the Women’s 3000 meters event at the Simmons-Harvey Big Ten Conference Invitational Indoor Track event at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Ramirez finishes with a time of 9:58.32.

•Ontario Christian High graduate and York College track and field athlete Jarod Beldon wins the heptathlon event at the 2021 Friends University NAIA Mid-Season Invite in Wichita, Kansas. Beldon, a sophomore at York City University in York, New York, finishes first in the 10-athlete heptathlon, which consists of 60- and 200-meter dashes, 400- and 1,000-meter runs, 60-meter hurdles, high jump, pole vault, long jump and shot put. He finished first in the 1,000-meter in 2:56.61; first in high jump at 6-0; second in shot put at 36-9.5; second in 60-meter hurdles in 8.90 seconds; second in pole vault at 12-6.75; fourth in long jump at 19-2.75; and fourth in 60-meters in 7.55 seconds. Beldon is a 2019 graduate of Ontario Christian High.

February

•Chino native and 2000 Don Lugo High graduate Diana Taurasi, the WNBA’s career-scoring leader and three-time WNBA champion, agrees to a two-year, $449,335 contract with the Phoenix Mercury, the team she has played for during her entire 17-year career.Taurasi was the No.-1 overall selection of the 2004 WNBA Draft by the Mercury, and she led the team to the 2007, 2009 and 2014 WNBA championships. She is the league’s career-scoring leader with 8,931 points.

•More than 500 people participate in the annual Run for Russ 5K run-walk in downtown Chino to honor of slain Chino Police Officer Russ Miller.

•The Ontario Christian high school boys and girls cross country teams become the first Chino Valley-area sports teams to compete in a sanctioned CIF-Southern Section event since the coronavirus pandemic began with a meet at Aquinas High in San Bernardino. Senior Aidan Vorster places first in the boys’ race. 

•Loaded with athletes already signed to college scholarships, the Chino Hills High girls’ softball team begins the 2021 season as the No. 1-ranked team in the country, according to the Maxpreps.com preseason Top 25 rankings. The Huskies finish 20-6 and tie for the Baseline League championship with Upland (9-1).

•Chino Hills High graduate Eli Scott, a member of the school’s 2015-16 national championship boys basketball team and senior at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, is named an All-West Coast Conference first-team honoree for the 2020-21 season. Scott was the only player to average more than 20 points per game in conference games.

March

•Chino Hills resident Patrick Bruce wins the male title and Luz Garcia of Reseda takes home the female title at the Chino Valley Youth Museum Dairyaire 5K run-walk at Ayala Park in Chino. A total of 412 participants took in the 11th annual race. Mr. Bruce finishes the race in a time of 15:47 and Ms. Garcia runs a time of 18:17 to place second overall in the race.

•Chino Hills resident LaMelo Ball, a guard with the NBA’s Charlotte Hornets, fractures his wrist during a game against the Los Angeles Clippers at Staples Center in Los Angeles. Ball will miss several weeks before making his return. After the season, Ball is named the NBA’s Rookie of the Year.

•Don Lugo High running back Gary Garcia scores three touchdowns, including a first-quarter 72-yard reception on a halfback pass, to lead the Conquistadores to a 20-14 win over Chino High in the 41st Milk Can Game at Chino High stadium, which was the first time the annual game was played in month of March.

April 

•The Chino High football team scores 38 first-quarter points and clinches sole possession of the Sierra League title— the Cowboys’ first league championship since 2012— with a 45-7 victory over Pomona High in Pomona. “That’s the first ever,” second-year Cowboys head coach Joey LaRosa said about the 38-point first quarter. “I’ve been on some bad teams when I first started coaching and I understand and I feel where (Pomona) is coming from. But 38 points in the first quarter, I’ve never seen that in my career.”

•The Ayala High football team racks up 337 offensive yards and shuts out the Huskies for the first time in a 42-0 to win its third straight Battle for the Bone trophy. It was the first time Ayala defeats Chino Hills three straight years since the Battle for the Bone game was first played in 2003. 

•Chino Hills High first-year varsity football Josh Cronkite is relieved of his duties after only five games with the Huskies. Coach Cronkite was hired as Chino Hills High head coach in January 2020 after coaching at Bloomington High and finished 1-4 in the shortened 2021 season. Chino Hills High athletic director Mykeal Terry is named head coach. 

•Don Lugo’s Ellie Garcia hits two home runs, drives in nine runs and strikes out 13 hitters from the mound to lead the Don Lugo High girls’ softball team to a 15-2 victory over Chino High in a Mt. Baldy League contest at the Chino High field. Garcia is now a student-athlete at the University of Nevada-Reno.

May

•Chino Hills High graduate Brooke Johnson, a sophomore women’s softball player at DePaul University in Chicago, is named a Big East Conference Player of the Week after her performance in DePaul’s three-game sweep over Butler. Johnson hit .545 in the series with three multi-hit games and knocked in three runs. She finishes with a double and homerun and had a .909 slugging percentage with two runs scored.

•Chino Hills High sophomore Tyler Stull hits a three-run walk off home run to lift the Huskies to an 8-5 win over Rancho Cucamonga, extending the team’s winning streak to a school-record 10 games. Stull finished with four RBIs in the victory.

•Ayala High captures its second straight Palomares League boys’ soccer championship with a shutout victory over Bonita High. Conner Kilde scores a first-half goal on an assist from Trisstian Hillenbrand and Nikolas Dinh adds a goal in the 55th minute on an assist from Johnathan Guerrero for Ayala (9-3-2-, 7-2-1).

•Ontario Christian High wins the Ambassador League girls’ tennis title with an undefeated record with a win over Western Christian in the regular season finale played at the Claremont Tennis Club. The Knights finish the season 10-3 overall, 6-0 in league.

•The City of Chino Hills takes home the Chino Corporate Challenge championship for the second straight time, scoring 241.5 points in the two-week event pitting employees of governmental agencies and private business in sporting and gaming competitions. Hussmann places second with 198.5 points, followed by City of Chino (167.5), Chino Valley Medical Center (159.5), Chino Valley Chamber of Commerce (148.5) and Chino’s Heroes (33.5).

•Chino High senior Mia Chavez wins the girls’ 800m invitational and the 1-mile run races at the Arcadia Invitational, which has been in existence since 1968. Chavez’ time of 4:55.72 in the 1-mile race was just .73 seconds off the meet record time of 4:55.19 set in 2019 by Chino Hills High’s Jacqueline Duarte. Ayala High’s Madeline Siefert places first in girls’ pole vault with a leap of 11 feet, 9 inches and Ariana Gonzalez takes third in high jump invitational with a height of 5 feet, 4 inches.

•Ayala High softball pitcher Emily Leavitt strikes out 31 hitters, tied for the ninth most number of strikeouts in a high school softball game in CIF-Southern Section history, during the Bulldogs’ 2-0 win in 14 innings at Glendora High School. Later this month, Ayala captures the Palomares League championship. 

•Chino High boys basketball captures the Mt. Baldy League championship with a 9-1 record, its first league title in the sport since 1979. The Cowboys advance to their first CIF-Southern Section quarterfinals match since 1965, but fall to Linfield Christian, 68-55.

•Chino High Junior Ashley Hood captures the 2020-21 Val Verde girls golf championship and Most Valuable Player honors at league finals held at Mountain Meadows Golf Course in Pomona. Hood finishes with a two-day score of 158.

June  

•The Ayala and Don Lugo high school baseball teams win the Palomares and Mt. Baldy League titles, respectively. The title is the ninth straight league championship for Don Lugo. 

•Chino Hills High’s Elisabella Forest wins the CIF-Southern Section girls’ 100 backstroke title and the Huskies finish fourth out of 53 teams in the Division 3 team standings at the swimming championships at Santa Margarita High School in Rancho Santa Margarita. Forest records a time of 55.86 in the 100-backstroke championship race, winning the event by nearly a second over second-place finisher Nicole Meza of Valencia High, who had a time of 57.82.

•Ayala’s Emma Lazaro connects on back-to-back 3-pointers in the final 30 seconds, including the game-winner with 1.4 seconds left to lift the Bulldogs to a 57-54 victory over San Dimas and the CIF-Southern Section Division 3A girls’ basketball title, the program’s second overall title (2007 season).

•Three Chino Valley track and field athletes bring home five CIF-Southern Section titles at the CIF-Southern Section division finals, the final event of the 2021 season. Chino High’s Mia Chavez, a junior, captures the Division 2 800m and 1,600m titles, Ontario Christian High junior Christian Burroughs wins the Division 4 discus and shot put championships, and Ayala High senior Marcus Monroe caps his career with a Division 1 title in boys’ long jump.

•Ontario Christian High’s Chloe Briggs, a Chino resident, scores a game-high 34 points in the Knights’ 62-55 loss to Sage Hill in the CIF-Southern Section Division 3A girls’ basketball championship game played at Sage Hill in Newport Beach.

•Don Lugo High graduate Diana Taurasi is named to the U.S. Women’s Basketball team for the 2020 Olympics in Japan for the fifth time. In August, Taurasi wins her fifth gold medal to become one of two international basketball players (male or female) to win five Olympic golds in the sport. This month, Taurasi becomes the first WNBA player to top 9,000 career points.

•Ayala High baseball reaches the CIF State South Region Division 1 title game, but falls to JSerra of San Juan Capistrano, 5-1, in the championship game.

•Ayala High senior Emma Lazaro and Ayala head coach Brian Harris are named the Division 3A Player and Coach of the Year, respectively, and Ontario Christian High sophomore Chloe Briggs is named Division 3AA Player of the Year by the CIF-Southern Section for the 2021 season.

July 

•Four baseball players and three softball players are named All-CIF-Southern Section honorees for the 2021 season. Ayala High softball pitcher Emily Leavitt, a University of Minnesota signee, was named to the Division 1 team. Don Lugo High pitcher and University of Nevada-Reno signee Ellie Garcia is named to the Division 3 team and Ontario Christian High catcher Bridgette Trujillo, a senior, earns Division 5 honors. In baseball, Ayala High’s Cole Koniarsky, Troy McCain and Ty Borgogno earn Division 1 honors and Chino Hills High senior Braden Hofmeyer is named a Division 3 honoree.

•Ontario’s Stan McDonald wins the main event title and 2020 Chino High graduate Carissa Marker takes home the women’s mini-car championship at the 30th annual Chino Challenge Demolition Derby at the Chino Fairgrounds in Chino. A sell-out crowd of nearly 4,000 fans fill the stands for the annual event, which returned after a year hiatus because of the coronavirus pandemic. Mr. McDonald became the derby’s third two-time champion, surviving a field of 36 cars to take home this year’s title. He also won in 2007.

•Chino Hills High graduate and Atlanta Hawks’ forward Onyeka Okongwu is sidelined for six months after undergoing shoulder surgery to repair a torn labrum. The surgery was performed in Los Angeles by Dr. Neal ElAttrache of Kerlan-Jobe Orthopedic Clinic. Okongwu returns to the Hawks’ lineup Dec. 17.

•Chino Hills resident Kiki Estrada, a former Chino Hills High softball player now at Orange Lutheran High, competes at the inaugural Premier Girls’ Fastpitch Futures All-American Game at Deanna Manning Stadium in Irvine. The game features the top Class of 2022 and Class of 2023 softball players from across the country.

August

•Ontario Christian High’s Chloe Briggs and Chino Hills High’s Erica Collins earns Cal-Hi Sports All-State Division 2 first- and second-team honors, respectively, for the 2021 girls’ basketball season. Briggs leads Ontario Christian to a 22-3 record, scoring 29.5 points and pulling down 11.9 rebounds per game during the season. Collins averages a team-high 13.2 points and 9.9 rebounds a game, leading the Huskies to the CIF-Southern Section Division 2A quarterfinals. Later this year, Collins signs with the University of Nevada-Las Vegas.

•Lonzo Ball, the oldest of the three famous brothers from Chino Hills, agrees to a four-year, $85 million contract with the Chicago Bulls as part of a sign-and-trade deal with the New Orleans Pelicans, his team the past two seasons. Ball spent his first two years with the Los Angeles Lakers after they drafted the 6-foot-6 guard No. 2 overall in the 2017 Draft.

•Don Lugo High hires Michael Reyes, the assistant coach at Bonita High the past four seasons, as its head baseball coach. The 27-year-old Upland resident replaces three-year varsity coach and 1992 Chino High graduate Eric Highstreet, who last month moved to Virginia.

•It was an impressive debut for Chino Hills High graduate LiAngelo Ball, who scores 16 points, including five 3-pointers, and records two steals, two rebounds and two assists in his debut with the Charlotte Hornets at the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas. He later signs a contract with the Hornets’ G-League team. 

•Canyon Hills Junior High student Joshua Komrosky places third in discus in the 11-12 year old division at the USA Track and Field Junior Olympics in Jacksonville, Florida. 

•Ayala High football wins its fourth straight Battle for the Bone trophy, and second in 2021, with a 21-20 victory over Chino Hills High in the annual game. Bulldogs’ running back CJ Sento rushes for 100 yards and two scores for Ayala.

September

•Team Finesse wins the 12u Southern Pacific Summer Invitational basketball championship in Corona. Team members are Coach Owen Cantos, Owen Cantos, Andersen Lynn, AJ Ignacio, Antonio Lopez, Troy Abandy, Jakobi Grant, Maximilian Stine, Terry Huang, Nate Lopez and Coach Rudy Lopez.  

•The Ayala High boys’ cross country team places first in the Senior and Junior boys divisions at the Fastback Invitational at Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut. 

•Ayala High School’s girls basketball team receives a Certificate of Recognition from Chino Hills Mayor Brian Johsz for their CIF-Southern Section Division 3A championship during 2021 season. Ayala defeated San Dimas, 57-54, on June 10 to win the program’s second basketball title.

•Chino High wide receiver Daniel Nakashima catches three touchdown passes and Dennis Rocha scores a pair of rushing touchdowns in Chino’s 49-0 win over Don Lugo High in 42nd annual Milk Can Game, returning the Milk Can trophy to Chino High for the first time since 2015. Before the game, Don Lugo High football players carry 13 American flags onto the field during their pregame introduction to honor the 13 U.S. soldiers killed in August in a suicide bomb attack in Afghanistan. Among those killed were Southern California residents Lance Cpl. Kareem Nikoui, 20, of Norco, Lance Cpl. Dylan Merola, 20, of Rancho Cucamonga and Cpl. Hunter Lopez, 22, of Indio. The Don Lugo players also stood with the American flags in hand during the national anthem. 

•It’s announced that the annual Chino Youth Boxing Foundation’s Gobbler Gloves Boxing Show in November will be cancelled because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

•Brianna King, a 2020 Ayala High graduate, is named September’s Athletic Student of the Month for the Inland Empire Athletic Conference as a member of the Chaffey College women’s cross country team. King, a freshman, finishes third overall in 19:39 in her debut meet on Aug. 27 at Moorpark College and places second overall in 19:09 at the Oxnard Cross Country Invitational on Sept. 10. 

•Chino Hills High football shuts out Chino High, 41-0, in the first game between the two Chino Valley Unified high schools since the 2009 season. Huskies quarterback Bobby Johnson tosses touchdown passes to William Davis (16 yards) and Ian Bateman (11 yards), Hunter Corbin and Jermar Jackson each run in a score, Colby Del Duca ran the second half opening kickoff 90 yards for a touchdown and Jake Laurent kicks a pair of field goals in the victory.

October

•The Ayala High football team has its 21-game winning streak, which dates back to the 2019 season, snapped with a 21-7 loss to Glendora High at Citrus College. The Bulldogs will later capture the Mountain West League title with a 3-0 record with wins over Alta Loma, Bonita, and Charter Oak.

•Chino High football head coach Joey LaRosa is recognized as the High School Coach of the Week by the Los Angeles Rams after the Cowboys’ 49-0 victory over Don Lugo. The winner of High School Coach of the Year will be announced Dec. 30.

•Ontario Christian High graduate Anthony Quintanilla is hired as the school’s boys’ varsity soccer head coach. Coach Quintanilla will replace one-season coach Andy Plascencia, who resigned in July to accept a full-time job in Arizona.

•Don Lugo and Ontario Christian high school girls’ volleyball teams win the Mt. Baldy and Ambassador league titles, respectively, this season. Don Lugo (18-5 overall) went undefeated in its 10 league games while Ontario Christian finishes its league season with a 14-0 record. 

•Don Lugo High boys’ water polo wins the Mt. Baldy League championship with 10-0 record. 

•Chino High’s Mia Chavez and Don Lugo’s Jordan Berkley capture the Mt. Baldy League girls’ and boys’ cross country league individual championships in the league finals meet at Colony High in Ontario. Don Lugo High wins the boys’ league team title.

November

•The Chino Hills High girls’ cross country team runs its way to the Baseline League championship at Central Park in Rancho Cucamonga, led by Karis Brown’s first-place overall finish in 18:27.5, Jenna Gallegos places second overall in 18:29.9 and Alayna McGarry is fifth in 19:11.3. 

•Chino Hills High’s girls’ volleyball team falls in five sets in the CIF-Southern Section Division 5 title game, but would finish undefeated in CIF State Tournament, capturing the Division 3 title with a straight-sets victory over Carondelet High of Concord at Santiago Canyon College in Orange. The state title in the first for Chino Hills High in girls’ volleyball.

•Chino High School senior Mia Chavez, a University of Arizona-signee, becomes only the seventh Chino Valley-area cross country runner to capture a CIF-Southern Section individual championship, winning the Division 3 title at Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut. Chavez runs the 3.1-mile course in 17:36.1, shaving off 33 seconds from her time at the preliminaries a week earlier. Ayala High’s Mason Ma finishes second overall in the Division 2 boys’ championships in a time of 15:00.0. At the CIF State Meet in Fresno, Chavez finishes fourth overall in Division 3 and the Ayala High boys team places fourth in the Division 1 team standings. 

•The Chino Hills High football team, which defeated St. Genevieve, 17-7 and Summit, 15-8, in the CIF-Southern Section Division 5 playoffs, fall to Valencia High, 24-21, in its first semifinal appearance since the 2015 season. The Huskies finish 8-5 during the 2021 season under first-year coach Mykeal Terry just months after the program finished 1-4 in the early 2021 season and were shut out in three of those five games. 

December

•Ayala High junior Natalie Erazo places first in the 101-pound division and earns Lower Weights Most Valuable Wrestler at the inaugural Walnut Girls Invitational Tournament at Walnut High School.

•The Ontario Christian High girls’ basketball team wins the Mark Keppel Tournament, defeating South Pasadena in the title game, 60-44. Tournament Most Valuable Player Chloe Briggs, a junior from Chino, led all scorers with 39 points.

•Three area high school girls’ volleyball players are named to the All CIF-Southern Section teams for the 2021 season. Ontario Christian High’s Brooklyn Goedhart, a junior, is named to the Division 2 team and Chino Hills High seniors Tehya Chadwick and Paige Gutowski are Division 5 honorees. 

•Chino High finishes in fourth place at the 32-team Downey Wrestling Tournament with three individual champions.  Caleb Valenzuela (106 lbs), Michael Vassalle (182 pounds) and Beau Parker (195 pounds) win their divisions. 

•Chino Hills High captures its Chino Hills Holiday in the Hills Tournament with an undefeated record. The Huskies (12-1), ranked No. 1 in Division 6 by the CIF-Southern Section, will compete next week in the San Gorgonio Tournament in San Bernardino before opening Baseline League play Tuesday, Jan. 4 at Upland High. 

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