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Articles by Phillip Brents

After eight weeks of play, the San Diego Section power rankings for football are finally starting to fall into place with some reasonable sense. While some movement up or down seems likely over the remaining three weeks of regular season play, the top teams in each division appear to now be known.
There are a few surprises – particularly pleasant ones for East County teams.

It’s a position the Grossmont College men’s water polo team isn’t accustomed to being in: looking up at their rivals from near the bottom of the Pacific Coast Athletic Conference standings.

But that’s just the scenario the Griffins found themselves in when visiting Southwestern College Oct. 7 for a key PCAC contest. Grossmont carried a 1-3 conference record into the match against the 2-2 Jaguars.

The American Hockey League, in which the new San Diego Gulls are members, features players who are on loan from the NHL as well as highly touted NHL draft picks.

The Gulls will play a 66-game schedule this season and will be members of the AHL’s seven-team Pacific Division alongside four other California teams and two teams based in Texas.

Professional ice hockey makes its return to the San Diego region after a nine-year absence on Saturday, Oct. 10, when the San Diego Gulls face off their inaugural American Hockey League season against the Grand Rapids Griffins at the Valley View Casino Center (Sports Arena).

A large crowd is expected. Game time is 7:05 p.m. 

Monte Vista High School senior Tyler Lopez has firmly entrenched himself at the head of the pack to start the 2015 high school cross-country season. Lopez won his third consecutive invitational title on Friday, Sept. 25, by recording a comfortable 12-second victory at the 42nd annual South Bay Invitational at Rohr Park in Chula Vista.

Anthony Lawrence set numerous San Diego Section passing records during his three-year varsity career at Grossmont High School. He doesn’t appear to be slowing down at the next level judging by his four-touchdown performance in the University of San Diego’s 45-21 non-conference win over visiting Western New Mexico on Sept. 12.

The 21st annual Mustang/Phair Co. Invitational took place on Friday, Sept. 11, and attracted nearly 1,100 high school runners to Rohr Park in Chula Vista.

Student-athletes pushed themselves to their physical and mental limits under extremely trying weather conditions that featured elevated temperatures and high humidity levels. For many runners, just finishing was a personal victory.

Greg Louganis is 27 years removed from his last Olympic diving gold medal and 38 years removed from setting a San Diego Section record on three-meter diving record. But his presence is still felt throughout the region if judged by the large number of fans who turned out for last weekend’s Road to Rio tour stop along the San Diego Embarcadero.

Louganis was available to meet the public Sunday at the B Street Pier as part of the tour along with current U.S. Paralympian Blake Leeper.

San Diego State University and the University of San Diego are located just 9.4 miles apart, yet Saturday’s college football pairing between the two schools is only the second in history.

SDSU defeated USD, 42-12, at Aztec Bowl on Nov. 18, 1961, in the only previous matchup between the teams.

Saturday’s encounter at Qualcomm Stadium is sure to be well attended with the annual KGB SkyShow treating fans to a post-game fireworks extravaganza. Kick-off is scheduled for 5 p.m.

The Grossmont Foothillers hosted the Eastlake Titans in a multi-level scrimmage Aug. 20. Both Grossmont head coach Tom Karlo and Eastlake head coach Lee Price mulled over the action, logging what they liked and what needed more work.

Karlo was pleased overall with his team’s hard-hitting effort against the Titans, rated the seventh best team in the San Diego Section in the 2015 preseason poll. However, the Foothillers sideline boss admitted he wanted to see more from his offense.