Thursday Night Recap: St. Francis the real deal

LA CAADA — “Bring ‘em out, bring ‘em out, bring ‘em out”

That’s the beginning of the T.I. song that was blaring from the speakers before the start of the St. Francis High School football game against Burroughs.

Well, there was some truth to it.

I spotted a caravan of Muir players and coaches leaving the game late in the fourth quarter when the Golden Knights all but had it wrapped up, followed by a slew of Burbank players who for whatever reason were wearing their white jerseys.

The crowd on hand witnessed a defense-dominating St. Francis team that rolled to a 30-5 victory over the visiting Indians on Thursday night in nonleague action at St. Francis High.

Our very own Keith Lair covered the game for the paper but after work around 5 p.m. I decided to head out to the game and take my video camera and shoot some of the action. After I finish this blog I’ll head to the video room and try to put it all together. If you don’t see it up in a day or two then for sure by Monday, I hope.

It’s been a long 14-hour day but alas I got to see the top-ranked team. St. Francis proved its worth.

Let me say this: Dietrich Riley hands down is the best player in the San Gabriel Valley.

Period.

(Lair thinks Riley was much better last year but added he came away impressed with Riley on defense. I obviously didn’t see Riley play last year but fair enough.)

The junior returned punts, made some hard-hitting tackles at DB and rushed for close to 100 yards on 18 carries. It’s far away from his performance against Crescenta Valley where he rushed for 213 yards and three touchdowns. But his impact definitely was felt.

With all this talk about Riley people are forgetting about the other guys on the team. Justin sciarra is solid. Malik Speed is a great speedy back that can give you some very good plays and Evan King can push as many as three defenders like when he scored from about 6 yards out. Rian Younker had a pretty good game, too.

It was a close game in the first half, St. Francis (3-0) leading, 10-3. But in less than a minute the Golden Knights scored 14 points. Before you knew it, Burroughs found itself trailing big in the second half as St. Francis went up big. The Indians got their final two points after St. Francis muffed a long snap in its end zone that gave Burroughs a safety.

Burroughs for some reason went for it twice on fourth down, once on fourth and 5 and then again on fourth and 2, both times they gave St. Francis good field position to work with.

To the Indians credit, they did run the ball well especially down the middle. Their line is big and can make good pushes and create holes, but a stingy Golden Knights defense kept the running game on check.

Unfortunately, the Indians (2-1) lost star running back Dalton Williams to a severe ankle sprain on their second play of the second drive. As if that wasn’t enough, they then lost their backup running back Eddie Lopez to almost the same injury.

Before the game, Burroughs was doing drills and warm-ups. After finishing they went back into the locker room but two coaches stayed and watched St. Francis’ warm-ups, perhaps to get an edge.

It didn’t work.

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