By Aaron Valdez
In a potential bounce-back season, the Wildcats of Monrovia High School are on the hunt to reclaim the Rio Hondo League title since they won it in 2016.
Despite being regarded as a perennial powerhouse in its respective league, Monrovia suffered a rare losing season in 2017. The reigning champs went 5-7, which was only good for third place in the league standings.
This blemish will be difficult to simply sweep under the rug but its safe to say Monrovia will use it as motivation in its 2018 campaign. This year’s roster features a plentiful amount of experience and talent including outfielder Gabriel Arellano, catcher Steven Bermudez, outfielder Jordan Erby and pitcher Gavin Mitchell.
The Wildcats’ road to redemption is already off to a solid start as they have jumped out to a season-opening 4-2 record. This stretch includes wins against Claremont (twice), Marshall and Polytechnic but losses to Sierra Vista and La Salle.
Monrovia’s best victory came in its 4-0 blanking of the Polytechnic Panthers during the opening rounds of the Dave Moore Spring Classic. Senior pitcher Julian Gomeztrejo tossed a complete game, dealing nine strikeouts and only surrendering three hits.
On the offensive end, the Wildcats were led by junior third baseman Logan Barnier, who went 2-3 at the plate to bring in a total of three RBIs.