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Fryer: Big wrestling weekend at Fountain Valley
Taking a look around Orange County high school sports:
•It's Five Counties weekend. The gigantic wrestling tournament, pretty much a preview of the CIF-Southern Section Championships, is today and Saturday at Fountain Valley High. After today's preliminary action is held on 11 mats, Saturday starts with the championship quarterfinals at 9 a.m. and concludes with the finals at 5:30 p.m.
•County wrestlers top-seeded in their weight classes are Marina's Colin Navickas, at 160 pounds; Wyond Mills of Laguna Hills, at 145; and Mason Kumashiro of Los Alamitos, at 195. Kumashiro recently committed to Army.
•Admission for Five Counties: Today, $6 for adults, $3 for students with valid student identification, and $1 for children 12 and younger; Saturday it is $7 for adults, $4 for students and $1 for children. Expect a packed gym for Saturday's finals.
Related article: Los Alamitos' Redmond ready for Five Counties
•There is a state tournament for girls wrestling. The CIF-SS qualifying tournament for the state tournament is Feb. 8-9 at Rancho Verde of Moreno Valley. The state tournament is Feb. 22-23 at Lemoore High, which is sort of between Bakersfield and Fresno.
•Savanna will induct Tony Okada into its Hall of Fame during its boys basketball game tonight. Okada, class of 1991, won consecutive state wrestling championships. His induction will occur at halftime of Savanna's home game against Anaheim.
•Three county girls basketball teams are No. 1 in their CIF-SS divisions: Mater Dei in Division 1AA, Orange Lutheran in 2A and El Dorado in 3AAA. Two are in CalHiSports' state top 20: Mater Dei is No. 1, and Troy is No. 10.
•New Esperanza football coach Gary Bowers has strong credentials. He has been an assistant coach under some excellent head coaches, such as John Barnes at Los Alamitos and Jeff Bailey at El Dorado. (Bailey now is head coach at Yorba Linda.)
•Longtime football and basketball official Al Hackney is battling a cancer situation. Hackney, 80, was an official for county games for 53 years, and worked plenty of college games during that time. Chances are good that if you played in, coached or attended some varsity football and basketball games over the past several decades, you heard Hackney's whistle.
•A combine for graduating senior football players who hope to play NCAA Division II or III or NAIA football will be held Feb. 23 at Home Depot Center in Carson. Former UCLA coach Terry Donahue is among the instructors for the event that is free for players and high school and college coaches. For more information visit cashowcase.org.
•Many area-based all-star football games are played in January. The county all-star game traditionally is a summer game. The Brea Lions Club, organizers of the county football all-star game, is considering moving the game to January but must first consider several items like availability of practice fields and multi-sport athletes.
•Also being surveyed is adjusting the boundary that divides the north and south teams for the county all-star football game. Pushing the boundary southward to Edinger Avenue would move Foothill and Tustin, and others, to the north. Lowering the boundary further south to Warner Avenue would also move Mater Dei to the north.
•Thomas Duarte, Mater Dei football receiver/linebacker who was the 2012 county offensive player of the year, will take an official recruiting visit to USC, Mater Dei coach Bruce Rollinson confirmed. Duarte has committed to UCLA, but has not signed. The football letter-of-intent signing period begins Feb. 6. The Duarte-USC trip information was tweeted by Greg Biggins, national recruiting analyst for Fox Sports and scout.com.
•Rollinson suggests that the football signing period should be in September, so players could get it out of the way and enjoy their senior seasons. Basketball signing period is in early November, before basketball players' senior season begins.
•A recent batch of baseball commitments: senior infielder Harrison White of St. Margaret's to Yale; and the following three Fountain Valley players, sophomore catcher Mike Hickman to Oklahoma State, junior outfielder Brock Lundquist to Long Beach State, and junior shortstop Dan Pazlaff to Oregon.
•The California Coaches Association's choices for Southern California coaches of the year included Mission Viejo's Bob Johnson in football and Mater Dei's Chris Segesman for water polo.
•A great way to keep up with what is happening during boys basketball game nights is to follow me at twitter.com/stevefryer.
•Sonora had an enthusiastic and well-organized student cheering section Wednesday for the Raiders' home game against Troy. The champion of student cheering sections remains Servite's. That group has embraced the "Be Loud, Be Proud, Be Positive" standard that all of the better cheering sections must have.