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Now that one week has passed in 2019, it officially means this: League play resumes.

And the week of Jan. 7 has some key contests involving the Lompoc Valley that can for sure help shape up the rest of the Channel League moving forward.

From a meeting between two boys basketball teams that have dominated their league now facing off against one another to a significant girls wrestling battle that could determine who will continue to distance itself in the race for the league title, here are some noteworthy contests to look out for heading into upcoming week:

Boys basketball: Cabrillo at San Marcos, Jan. 8

Cabrillo had the top of the Los Padres League all to itself beginning from 2012-13 to the league’s final season last year. The Royals, though, have won their last 11 games in the Channel League and will enter this home contest as the defending league champ – and the team the Conquistadores will have to scale to win their first C.L. title. They finally meet at 7 p.m. on Tuesday.

Girls Soccer: Santa Barbara at Lompoc, Jan. 8

The Braves have hosted Santa Barbara region teams at Huyck Stadium in the past for girls soccer contests. But Tuesday’s contest at 5 p.m will provide this moment: The first-ever Channel League home contest for Lompoc High girls soccer.

Girls wrestling: Lompoc at Dos Pueblos, Jan. 9

One of the best feel good stories in my view has been both the rise of LHS girls wrestling and the fact this all-new Braves team has won all of their Channel League duals so far this season. Lompoc can go for the 4-0 mark in C.L contests against the Chargers on the road.  

Girls Soccer: Cabrillo at Lompoc, Jan. 10

We know the drill in the Lompoc Valley: Records get thrown out when CHS and LHS meet in any sport. In this contest, both will aim to outscore the other as Channel League opponents – and in a contest to determine who can be an early contender in the race for the league title or a final postseason bid from the league.

Boys soccer: Lompoc at Cabrillo, Jan. 10

Both the Braves and the Conqs have struggled so far on the soccer field, with only a combined five wins so far this season. But as stated above for the girls matchup, teams playing in a rivalry game can care less about their records. And this version of LHS versus CHS can help establish some momentum moving forward for a final postseason bid for either the Braves or the Conqs.

Basketball: Cabrillo at Lompoc, Jan. 11 (both boys and girls)

Is this the year the Braves can put an end to Cabrillo’s dominance over LHS on both the girls and boys basketball court? The Conquistadores have had their early struggles in both girls (currently 4-11) and boys (currently 7-12). However, CHS still has had the upper-hand in both spectrums against Lompoc. The CHS girls haven’t lost to the Braves since Feb. 2, 2016 (Lompoc won 71-52). The CHS boys has defeated LHS six straight times, with the last loss occurring on Feb. 4, 2015 (the Braves won 67-57). Both Lompoc teams will aim to end their slide against rival Cabrillo at Bryan Ayer Court with the girls game starting at 5:30 p.m. then the boys contest set for approximately 7 p.m.

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Lorenzo J. Reyna covers sports for Lee Central Coast Newspapers, particularly in the Lompoc Valley. He can be reached at lreyna@leecentralcoastnews.com

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