Inland Empire: Games of the week

The Inland Valley League showdown Friday night between Moreno Valley Rancho Verde and Riverside Arlington at Riverside Ramona High was expected to be an emotionally charged game, but that was taken to another level Monday when Arlington coach Pat McCarthy went into cardiac arrest before practice.

It was initially feared he had suffered a heart attack, but the Riverside Press-Telegram reported Wednesday that he has a severe infection that caused his pulse to weaken.

Rancho Verde (9-0, 6-0) has won 21 consecutive league games, but Arlington (8-1, 6-0) will be its toughest test of the season.

Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

Three others to see:

Corona (5-4, 3-3) at Norco (7-2, 4-2), Friday – Corona can pass up Norco in the Big VIII League and finish third with a win, but will lose out on an automatic playoff berth with a loss and a victory Thursday night by Riverside King (4-5, 2-4) against visiting Riverside North (1-8, 1-5).

La Quinta (7-2, 3-1) at Palm Desert (6-3, 3-1), Friday – Palm Springs has already locked up the No. 1 playoff seeding from the Desert Valley League, but second and third will be settled here. La Quinta has won four straight against the Aztecs.

Perris Citrus Hill (6-3, 3-1) at San Jacinto (7-2, 3-1), Friday – The winner of this game is guaranteed a share of the Mountain Pass League title. That much is for certain. Beaumont (6-3, 3-1) and Hemet West Valley (5-4, 3-1) also play Friday night at San Gorgonio Middle School and the winner will also share in the league title. Figuring out the different playoff scenarios isn’t so simple.