And then there were three. A trio of local high school football teams advance to the CIF-SS quarterfinal round on Friday.
In Division 3, Edison (10-1) will be playing Buena Park (10-1) at Orange Coast College’s LeBard Stadium in Costa Mesa. That’s not the Chargers’ home stadium, exactly, but they do play there for their bigger games, including the annual contest with rival Fountain Valley.
Looking ahead – as real coaches are loathe to do – here are the potential matchups in the semifinals if our neighborhood champions prevail. In Division 3, if Edison wins it will take on the winner of the Cathedral-Rio Grande game. If Garden Grove wins, it will take on the winner of Rio Honda-El Modena. If Rancho wins it will face the winner of Montebello-Covina.
If you’re like us, you may not have been following the fortunes of Buena Park, Yorba Linda or Valley View, so here’s a quick look at those guys.
Buena Park: The Coyotes won the Freeway League. Their sole loss was a non-league contest to St. Francis of La Canada by the score of 28-19. There’s no shame in that; the Golden Knights are 9-2 and are in their own CIF quarterfinal game. BPHS is led by DeShaun Harvey, who has passed for 1777 yards and 18 touchdowns while being intercepted just twice. Overall, they have outscored their opponents 417 to 82 and are on a six-game winning streak.
Yorba Linda: Second-place finisher in the four-team Crestview League, the Mustangs are 9-2 overall. They can be a high-scoring team, having hit 40 points or more in four games. QB Luke Wilson has passed for 1737 yards and 16 TDs, with seven interceptions. Their top rusher is Jayton Webb with 582 yards and eight scores.
Valley View: The Eagles were the runner-up to Rancho Verde in the Inland Valley League. They’ve won five straight and are led by QB Jacob Barlage, a sophomore who’s thrown for 1700 yards and 13 touchdowns. He was intercepted six times. He’s not much of a running threat, though, having gained just six net yards on 21 carries.
WE TEND TO overemphasize football, but that has the most fan interest. But let’s not make the mistake of overlooking other prep sports such as water polo. The Huntington Beach boy’s team, for example, defeated Mater Dei 11-5 on Saturday and advanced to the CIF-SS Division 1 semi-finals on Wednesday against Harvard-Westlake of Studio City.
The Oilers (21-2) got four goals from Jake Cavano and 14 saves by goalkeeper Patrick Saunders. If the orange-and-black win on Wednesday, they would advance to the finals on Saturday against the winner of the Loyola-Orange Lutheran game.
AFTER SUNDAY’S 9-6 “victory” over the New York Jets, speculation and even bewilderment is building among fans of the Los Angeles Rams. It’s nice to win and stay in the race – sort of – for a playoff spot, but let’s be frank. Are they really a playoff team? Is Case Keenum going to miraculously improve?
Two possibilities suggest themselves. Maybe Keenum is still playing because the Rams’ coaching staff realizes they did a “whoops” in drafting Jared Goff. Maybe Head Coach Jeff Fisher is unwilling to admit they made a mistake.
Of course, another thought is that maybe Fisher is not the right choice, either. He has never posted a winning record in four-plus seasons as the Rams’ head coach. He’s 30-41-1, which works out to a .421 winning percentage. In most places, that translates into “unemployed.”
Monday Morning Coach sometimes is posted Monday afternoon.