The following are odds and ends from the local sports scene.
REID, CHIEFS INCH CLOSER TO PLAYOFFS
A season after finishing with the worst record in the National Football League, the Kansas City Chiefs are on the cusp of advancing to the playoffs for the first time since 2010.
With first-year coach Andy Reid, a former Glendale Community College football player, on board, Kansas City (10-3) can wrap up a postseason berth Sunday with a road victory or tie against the rival Oakland Raiders (4-9).
Kansas City, which finished 2-14 last season, could also qualify for the postseason if the Miami Dolphins lose or tie against the New England Patriots on Sunday or the Baltimore Ravens fall or tie against the Detroit Lions on Monday night.
The Chiefs, who are in second place in the American Football Conference’s West Division behind the Denver Broncos snapped a three-game losing streak Sunday with a convincing 45-10 victory against host Washington.
“I think that there are ups and downs in the National Football League,” Reid told the Associated Press. “I think you need to learn how to handle them and you can't get too high for the highs and you can't get too low for the lows.
“When you go through a three-game skid, that's not easy in the National Football League against good teams. You have to trust yourself; you have to trust the guys around you that you're going to fix the problem and that you're going to come to work with a purpose and I thought the guys did that.”
Kansas City posted a 27-17 home win against Oakland on Oct. 6. However, the Chiefs have struggled recently against the Raiders in Oakland, losing two of their last three games.
BENGALS, JACKSON REMAIN IN FIRST
With three games left in the regular season, the Cincinnati Bengals remain atop the American Football Conference’s North Division. Entering Sunday night’s game against the host Pittsburgh Steelers, the Bengals are 9-4 and own a two-game lead over the Baltimore Ravens.
The Bengals feature assistant coach Hue Jackson, a former quarterback at Glendale Community College. Jackson, who served as head coach of the Oakland Raiders in 2011, is Cincinnati’s running backs coach.
The Bengals have won three games in a row, including a 42-28 victory against the visiting Indianapolis Colts on Sunday. Cincinnati rushed for 155 yards in 35 carries and received two rushing touchdowns from running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis to turn back the Colts.
Cincinnati can clinch the division championship with a win or tie against Pittsburgh (5-8) and a loss or tie by or loss by Baltimore against Detroit. The Bengals can wrap up a playoff spot with a win or tie and a Miami Dolphins loss or a tie.
REBELS SECURE ALL-LEAGUE HONORS
Three members of the Flintridge Prep football team earned All-Prep League accolades.
Senior standout running back Stefan Smith and running back/linebacker Elliot Witter earned spots on the first team.
Smith rushed for 1,212 yards in 168 carries and scored 14 touchdowns. He caught 16 passes for 223 yards and two touchdowns despite missing three games because of ankle and shoulder injuries.
Witter had 65 rushes for 304 yards and three touchdowns. On defense, he finished with 28 1/2 tackles
“Stefan put the team on his back and he did so many great things,” Flintridge Prep Coach Antonio Harrison said. “He will be tough to replace.
“Elliot is a guy who goes out there and grinds it out. You wish you had 11 players like him out there at the same time.”
Senior linebacker Brian Heintz was named to the second team. Heintz finished with 37 tackles, three sacks and three forced fumbles.
Flintridge Prep finished 2-8, 1-3 in league for fourth place.
SEVEN NAB LEAGUE HONORS
The Crescenta Valley High and Glendale girls’ volleyball teams each posted winning records en route to advancing to the CIF Southern Section Division II-A playoffs.
Three players on each team and one Hoover athlete were bestowed with All-Pacific League recognition as voted on by the league’s eight coaches.
Crescenta Valley’s Emmie Walker and Glendale’s Kirsten Cabarong were named to the first team.
Walker, a junior outside hitter, finished with 300 kills for the Falcons (10-9, 8-6 in league for fourth place).
“She had that overall competitive edge,” Crescenta Valley Coach Jen Ku Lee said. “She did anything she could to get better.”
Cabarong, a senior middle blocker, helped the Nitros finish 11-10, 7-7 for fifth place in league and reach the postseason for the first time since the 1990s.
“She was our most dominant player,” Glendale Coach Jennifer Vo said. “It was her time being a senior and she wanted to lead the team.”
Crescenta Valley senior middle blocker Sabrina Shahbandeh (100 kills) and Glendale junior outside hitter Grace Tappin earned spots on the second team.
Receiving honorable mention were Crescenta Valley senior setter Cassidy Iannello (129 assists), Glendale senior libero Kathrina Lorenzo and Lilit Chaparyan of Hoover (2-12 overall and in league for seventh place).
VAQUEROS PICK UP HONORS
Though the Glendale Community College women’s soccer team finished 7-8-6, 4-7-3 in the Western State Conference South Division for fifth place, it saw five of its players garner all-conference recognition.
Sophomore defender Sheila Araji and freshman midfielder Jasmine De La Caridad Rocha earned first-team honors. De La Caridad Rocha finished with three goals and four assists for 10 points.
Freshman goalkeeper Andrea Guerra was named to the second team after finishing with 100 saves.
Picking up honorable mention were freshman midfielder Thalia Evfracio (one goal) and freshman defender Delia Pineda.
GCC MEN’S SOCCER RECOGNITION
The Glendale Community College men’s soccer team encountered a difficult season, finishing 2-18-1, 1-15 in the Western State Conference South Division for last place.
However, five players received postseason recognition.
Sophomore midfielder David Martirosyan was selected to the all-conference first team after scoring one goal.
Freshmen defenders Jose Catalan and Abraham Orozco were named to the second team.
Receiving honorable mention were freshman goalkeeper Christopher Hansoon (76 saves) and freshman midfielder Mohamed Inoussa.