The Franklin cross country team at the Bellarmine/Sacred Heart Cross Country Invitational on Sept. 25 at Griffith Park. Francisco Rodriguez, a junior (second from right) and David Martinez, a senior (center) placed 1st and 2nd, respectively, in their race. | Photo by Monique Muniz

NELA high school sports: Bright moments amid tough competition

2021 Editions Featured September Sports

By Dave Abbott

Franklin High School in Highland Park experienced the high of high school sports last week, including an 86-yard interception return for a touchdown in a game against Crenshaw and  1st and 2nd place individual wins for Franklin runners at the latest cross-country invitational. Meanwhile, competition is heating up in girls volleyball and tennis.

Most Northern League football teams had a bye week through Friday, Sept. 23, but Franklin picked up a game, defeating the Crenshaw Cougars in Crenshaw, 46-35.

Franklin quarterback Isaiah Diaz, a senior, threw three touchdowns on the way to completing 13 of 20 passes for 230 yards. Franklin running back Diego Muniz, a junior, had 23 carries for 126 yards and one touchdown.

And then there was Franklin wide receiver Hector Ceballos, a junior, who had nine receptions for 149 yards and two touchdowns. Ceballos also plays defense, where he had three interceptions, including an 86-yard interception return for a touchdown.

In other games from Friday, Sept. 23, Sotomayor of Glassell Park beat Animo Robinson of downtown L.A., 50-8, and the Muir Mustangs of Pasadena beat the Cathedral Phantoms, 6-2.

Upcoming Games

Eagle Rock will have its Homecoming game on Friday, Oct. 1 with kickoff at 7 p.m. The Eagles will face off against the Lincoln Tigers of Lincoln Heights.

The Franklin Panthers had an outstanding day at the 2.94 mile Bellarmine/Sacred Heart Cross Country Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 25 at Griffith Park. Two Panther runners, junior Francisco Rodriguez and senior David Martinez placed 1st and 2nd, respectively, in their race. Rodriguez’s time was 15:46.7. Martinez’s time was 16:17.3. As a team, the Panthers placed 2nd in the Varsity Red Division race.

In other results from the Bellarmine/Sacred Heart Invitational, the Eagle Rock boys team finished in 8th place in the Red Division and Cathedral placed 3rd in the Varsity Boys race. Cathedral sophomore Emmanuel Hernandez, a rising cross country star, placed 3rd in his race with a time of 15:16.6.

The Eagle Rock girls team competed in the Varsity Red Division, placing 4th, with two runners – senior Keely Miyamoto and senior Celeste Corrigan — placing 12th and 13th,  respectively. Miyamoto’s time was 19:57.3. Corrigan’s time was 20:21.4

The Comets from Sacred Heart of Jesus of Lincoln Heights placed 4th in the Girls Varsity Division. Jazlyn Couch, a freshman, placed 14th with a time of 22:07.2; senior Mariana Padilla placed 16th  at 22:35.9; and freshman Zyanya Torres placed 17th with a time of at 22:46.6

In Northern League action in the week through Sept. 24, the Franklin girls team won a game against Wilson of El Sereno, 3-0, and was defeated in a game against Marshall, 3-1. Sotomayor of Glassell Park beat Lincoln of Lincoln Heights, 3-1.

In Horizon League action through Sept. 24, the Comets of Sacred Heart defeated the Wildcats of Bishop Conaty-Loretto, 3-0, and the Pioneers of San Gabriel Mission, 3-0. With four regular matchups remaining, the Comets are 6-0 in the Horizon League and 13-3 overall.


With four more Northern League matches remaining before playoff seeds are announced, Marshall High of Los Feliz and Eagle Rock High are battling it out for league champion. Marshall is leading with a 4-0 record after defeating Eagle Rock, 12-6, on Sept. 28. Eagle Rock is 3-1. The two teams face off one more time, on Oct. 15, at Marshall.

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