Scouting Report: Rio Hondo Prep vs. Saddleback VC

CIF-SOUTHERN SECTION NORTHEAST DIVISION PLAYOFFS
SECOND ROUND
SATURDAY, 7 P.M.
RIO HONDO PREP (11-0) vs. SADDLEBACK VALLEY CHRISTIAN (7-4) AT ST. MARGARET’S HIGH (31641 La Novia Ave., San Juan Capistrano)

Someone asked if I was going to the Rio Hondo Prep game. To answer your question, yes I will be there live from St. Margaret’s. It’ll be the first opportunity I get to watch the Kares live and in action. I really hope my attending won’t jinx their vibe. Rio Hondo Prep is the defending champion and no doubt have a target on its back. They’ve had it all year with teams gunning for them, but as always the Kares have taken care of business. Saddleback Valley Christian boasts a good quarterback in Zac Rodarmel who’s passed for almost 1,800 yards and 17 touchdowns. He’s also the team’s second leading rusher behind William Hinn’s 1,177 yards and 22 touchdowns. “He’s a tall kid and throws pretty darn good,” Rio Hondo Prep coach Ken Drain said. “Their running back is fast and farily quick. Those guys do 99 percent of the offense; stop those guys and you can stop the offense, that’s the plan.” Rio Hondo Prep will have to go into Saturday nights’ game without Cody Cowell, a 6-foot-1, 225 pound tight end/linebacker. Cowell separated his right arm in the first round. That injury is not new to Cowell. He separated both his shoulders last season, but returned in time to play in all the Kares’ playoff games. Judging from Drain’s words, Cowell is without a doubt Rio Hondo Prep’s best player and heart and soul of the team. “He’s our enforcer on defense and he’s a great tight end,” Drain said. “He’s our lead blocker on a lot of our running plays. He’ll be a big loss.” Rio Hondo Prep defeated Desert Christian 34-0 in the first round. SVC squeezed past Riverside Christian, 21-20.

  • Anonymous

    Rio Hondo Prep should not have a problem against Saddleback Valley Christian. I watched SVC play earlier this season at Poly where the Panthers were able to put up 55 points against a rather suspect defense. RHP’s run at their second consecutive CIF title will come down to their semifinal game against Salesian High School should the Mustangs prevail against Mojave. I watched Salesian vs. St. Genevieve and was surprised at their size and quickness. Salesian suits up 52 players and are pretty physical up front where they average 6’3- 260 lbs. If both RHP and Salesain win this weekend, their semi-final matchup should produce the next CIF Division XIII Champion.

  • Manic Hispanic

    Anonymous,

    Having watched a lot of small-school football this year, I couldn’t agree with you more. For the division they’re in, Salesian is rather large in both stature and enrollment (395 but doubled because it’s an all boys school). They will be tough to beat.

    I’m guesssing coach Drain is hoping Cody Cowell can be ready for the semi-finals….assuming they win Saturday.

    BTW, Cowell is the best player in the Northeast division by far!

  • Anonymous

    Salesian 35-Mojave 28 O/T Final….Come on RHP take care of business tomorrow in the OC.

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