Star-News Super 23 Rankings: Gap closes, but Monrovia retains top spot over St. Francis

No. 1? Not yet, St. Francis. But you're closing. (Staff photo by Keith Birmingham)

No. 1? Not yet, St. Francis. But you’re closing.
(Staff photo by Keith Birmingham)

1. Monrovia (3-0) –
The Wildcats, despite a closer than expected win over San Dimas (26-13), still look like the best team in the area. How good Monrovia is will been seen during the next two weeks when they host South Hills and St. Francis in back-to-back weeks.
2. St. Francis (3-0) -– The Knights, after a sub-par 2012, are back, rocking their first three opponents. They’ll get tested the next two weeks, first at home vs. Damien on Friday and next week at Monrovia.
3. Muir (2-1) –- The Mustangs have looked impressive in wins over Salesian and Verdugo Hills. They should dominate play in the Pacific, which begins Thursday vs. Hoover.
4. Rio Hondo Prep (3-1) –- Who Kares? The rest of the Northeast Division should be as Rio has looked impressive in the early going, and a three-peat looks well within their grasps.
5. San Marino (2-1) –- The Titans are an offense juggernaut, averaging 56 points in three games. Defense will be the key to their success going forward. But don’t be surprised if they win out going into the regular-season finale vs. Monrovia.
6. La Salle (2-2) –- The Lancers have been hardened by a tough schedule and showed with a 40-0 whitewash of rival Maranatha. Next up is the Del Rey League, which looks to be theirs for the taking.
7. Pasadena Poly (3-0) –- The Panthers have taken care of business thus far. They face Bell-Jeff this week in game that could determine a playoff it spot. It did last season when a loss to Bell-Jeff cost them a trip to the postseason.
8. Arcadia (2-1) — It’s hard to get a read on the Apaches, who routed Alhamra, got whacked by Monrovia and struggled before beating Azusa, 8-7. They will need to play better in the Pacific go dancing in the playoffs.
9. Rosemead (2-1) — The Panthers have found their second wind, winning back-to-back games. They are likely a step behind Mission Valley League favorite Arroyo, but I definitely see a playoff spot in their future.
10. La Canada (2-1) — Sparta was overwhelmed by Crescenta Valley. But this is a team that could make a run at third in the Rio Hondo, behind Mornovia and San Marino.
The Rest: 11. Gabrielino (11-1), 12. Maranatha (2-2), 13. South Pasadena (1-2), 14. Duarte (1-2), 15. San Gabriel (1-3), 16. Flintridge Prep (0-3), 17. Temple City (1-3), 18. Pasadena (0-3), 19. Keppel (1-3), 20. Alhambra (0-4), 21. Marshall (1-3), 22. Bosco Tech (0-4), 23. Blair (0-4).


1. Eli Snyder, Maranatha, 72 of 125, 1,082 yards, 9 TDs
2. Ty Gangi, St. Francis, 45 of 68, 671 yards, 8 TDs
3. Johnny Bolinger, Rio Hondo Prep, 30 of 52, 491 yards, 6 TDs
4. Dejon Williams, Muir, 16 of 24 for 375 yards, 3 TDs
5. Robbie Fueling, La Canada. 16 of 32 for 356 yards, TD
6. Deshawn Potts, Monrovia, 16 of 30 for 258 yards, 2 TDs
7. Michael Bowman, Pasadena Poly, 20 of 27, 248 yards, 5 TDs
8. Isaia Ah-hing, Rosemead, 16 of 30, 245 yards, 3 TDs
1. Kurt Scoby, Monrovia, 612 yards, 8 TDs
2. Stefan Smith, Flingridge Prep, 499 yards, 7 TDs
3. Nate Tayco, Rio Hondo Prep, 407 yards, 6 TDs
4. Griffin Carter, Pasadena Poly, 388 yards, 7 TDs
5. Baile McDavid, Maranatha, 330 yards, 3 TDs
6. Michael Valenzuela, Alhambra, 313 yards, TD
7. Nasser Banihani, Temple City, 267 yards, 3 TDs
8. Joe Mudie, St. Francis, 267 yards, 4 TDs
9. Alec Zavala, Rosemead, 239 yards, 2 TDs
10. Mario Martinez, La Canada, 221 yards, 2 TDs
1. Darron McWhorter, Maranatha, 20 rec., 341 yards, 4 TDs
2. Xavius Boone, Maranatha, 21 rec., 310 yards, 2 TDs
3. Joe Mudie, St. Francis, 13 rec., 245 yards, 3 TDs
4. Dylan Crawford, St. Francis, 14 rec. , 225 yards, 3 TDs
5. Isaac Hoguin, Rio Hondo Prep, 5 rec., 192 yards, 3 TDs
6. Aidan Yamada, Maranatha, 11 rec., 180 yards, TD
7. Todd Murray, La Canada, 9 rec., 117 yards
7. Sam Brown, La Canada, 3 rec., 117 yards, TD
9. Oscar Noriega, Rosemead, 7 rec., 114 yards, TD
10. John Carroll, St. Francis, 10 rec., 100 yards, TD

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Star-News Pick ‘Em: St. Francis, Monrovia will major step-ups…I see a West Valley sweep


Keith and I are matching our knowledge of the area and high school football by offering our picks on the area’s games.

LAIR: 56-12 (17-4 last week)
RAMIREZ: 52-16 (14-7 last week)

Last week: My worst week of the season. Keith got a little separation, getting my by picking Rosemead over Warren, L.A. Wilson over Alhambra and Eagle Rock over Temple City. We also missed San Gabriel over Beverly Hills, Diego Vista over Marshall, Glendale over South Pasadena and Mar Vista over Gabrielino.
This week: There two huge games in the area this week, both on Friday. Damien comes to town to face St. Francis in a good ol’ Catholic school showdown, with Monrovia hosting South Hills, in a division step-up encounter for the Wildcats. I like both local entrants. St. Francis was very impressive in routing La Mirada. This will be more of a challenge, with Damien winning its last two games, but the Golden Knights might be too hot to handle. I also like Monrovia, which I think will get back to business with Deshawn Potts back behind center after missing last week. South Hills won a close one at Covina District Field last season. This one will again be close, but go with the ‘Cats.

This week’s schedule and predictions

Hoover vs. Muir at Glendale HS – Ramirez (Muir); Lair (Muir)
Pasadena Poly at Brentwood — Ramirez (Poly); Lair (Poly)
Kilpatrick at Rio Hondo Prep — Ramirez (Rio Hondo Prep); Lair (Rio Hondo Prep)
South Hills at Monrovia — Ramirez (Monrovia); Lair (Monrovia)
Damien at St. Francis, 7:30 p.m. — Ramirez (St. Francis); Lair (St. Francis)
St. Bernard at La Salle — Ramirez (La Salle); Lair (La Salle)
Azusa vs. Duarte at Citrus College — Ramirez (Azusa); Lair (Azusa)
Rosemead at San Gabriel — Ramirez (Rosemead); Lair (Rosemead)
Burbank at Arcadia — Ramirez (Burbank); Lair (Bubank)
San Marino at Beverly Hills — Ramirez (San Marino); Lair (San Marino)
South El Monte at Maranatha — Ramirez (Maranatha); Lair (Maranatha)
South Pasadena vs. Alhambra at Moor Field — Ramirez (South Pas); Lair (South Pas)
Flintridge Prep at Frazier Mountain — Ramirez (Flintridge Prep); Lair (Frazier)
Keppel at Sotomayor — Ramirez (Sotomayor) Lair (Keppel)
La Canada at Eagle Rock — Ramirez (Eagle Rock); Lair (Eagle Rock)
Crescenta Valley at Pasadena — Ramirez (Crescenta Valley); Lair (Crescenta Valley)
California Military Institute vs. Blair at Muir HS — Ramirez (CMI); Lair (CMI)
Bosco Tech at Verbum Dei — Ramirez (Verbum Dei): Lair (Verbum Dei)
California City at Gabrielino — Ramirez (Gabrielino); Lair (Gabrielino)

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Friday Night Final: La Salle wins small school Rose City crown from Maranatha; Muir rolls and Monrovia gets workman-like win over San Dimas

As far as small schools are concerned, Rose City still belongs to La Salle, which routed Maranatha for the second consecutive season. But the fourth week of the football season also saw Muir route Verdugo Hills, 70-6. Anyone think the Mustangs aren’t the favorite in the Pacific. Over at Monrovia, it was just win baby as the Wildcats improved to 3-0 with a closer-than-expected 26-13 victory over San Dimas.


PASADENA — The distinction of being the best small-school football team in Pasadena again rests with La Salle High School.
The Lancers left no doubt for the second consecutive season.
Bryce Harvey rushed for 102 yards and three touchdowns and host La Salle held Maranatha to a minus-1 yard rushing en route to a 40-0 victory over the Minutemen in the schools’ annual nonleague battle.
Milan Acquaah rushed for 108 yards and two scores and quarterback Will Pyburyn threw for a 158 yards for the Lancers, who improved to 2-2. La Salle won last season’s game, 63-7.
Eli Snyder threw for 141 yards for the Minutemen, who fell to 2-2 after winning their first two games.
La Salle coach Russell Gordon: “It’s great (to win this game). It’s great for the school, great for the community. Anytime you win a rivalry game, it’s amazing.”

— Steve Ramirez, @steverramirez on twitter

Maranatha's Chris Ajalat (52) attempts to stop La Salle's running back Bryce Harvey (2) as he makes a touchdown during the first half of Friday night's prep football game at La Salle High School in Pasadena, on September 20, 2013.  (Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz/Pasadena Star-News)

Maranatha’s Chris Ajalat (52) attempts to stop La Salle’s running back Bryce Harvey (2) as he makes a touchdown during the first half of Friday night’s prep football game at La Salle High School in Pasadena, on September 20, 2013.
(Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz/Pasadena Star-News)

1. Monrovia 26, San Dimas 13 —
This one was closer than expected, although the Wildcats (3-0) were without starting QB Deshawn Potts, who was nursing an injury. But San Dimas always plays the ‘Cats tough. Question is will they meet again?
2. St. Francis 49, La Mirada 20 — The Golden Knights (3-0) routed the Matadores and look capable of reclaiming the top spot as the area’s elite program. They get that shot in two weeks when they come to M-Town.
3. Muir 70, Verdugo Hills 6 —The Mustangs (2-1) are saying, ‘Don’t forget about us!” Don’t worry, we aren’t, especially after DeShon Williams puts in his two cents for early Player of the Year honors, accounting for 268 yards and six touchdowns. Muir is the favorite in the Pacific.
4. Rio Hondo 38, Calvary Murrieta 0 — The Kares (3-1) might not lose again. They overmatched the CMs, leading 32-0 at halftime. Why they aren’t ranked No. 2 in the Northeast is beyond logic.
5. San Marino 70, Nogales 0 — All seems to be well again in George Patton’s town. The Titans (2-1), after giving up nearly 500 yards in a 56-53 loss to Crescenta Valley last week, showcased their offense again, with Andrew Ferraco accounting for five TDs, with more than 200 yards rushing. Watch out for these guys.
6. La Salle 40, Maranatha 0 — Were the Lancers (2-2) hardened by losses to big boys Cathedral and Bishop Diego? It appears so after making easy work of the Minutemen (2-2). La Salle now enters Del Rey League, where it will be the favorite. The question is how about the Northwest Division? As Russell Gordon said Friday, we’ll see.
7. Pasadena Poly (2-0) hosts Malibu, today, 3 p.m. — Can Poly continue its early-season success. We think so.
Mar Vista 34, No. 8. Gabrielino 21 — No 5-0 start for the Eagles this year. But I still like their chances to make a run in the Mission Valley League.
Crescenta Valley 42, No. 9 La Canada 14 — The battle of the 210 West goes to the Falcons, who knocks Sparta from the unbeatens. The Falcons might be a player in the Pacific. Donnie Breneman led La Canada with two touchdowns.
No. 10 Arcadia 8, Azusa 7 — This might be a barometer reading for the Apaches, in a bad way. I thought they might have more of an upper hand, but a win’s a win, especially after getting an interception in the waning moments.
Boron 40, Flintridge Prep 14 — The Rebels have Stefan Smith. But maybe not much else.
Sierra Vista 47, Keppel 0 — So much for thinking things might change this year for the Aztecs. Well, Rome wasn’t built in a day.
Rosemead 14, Warren 7 — A nice win for the Panthers. Maybe they can threaten Arroyo in the Mission Valley League? We’ll see.
San Gabriel 13, Beverly Hills 6 — The Mats needed this. Maybe it will be a confidence builder heading into the Almont League.
Salesian 41, Pasadena 6 — Again, Rome wasn’t built in a day
Westminster 55 Bosco Tech 0 — Tigers need some confidence heading into Del Rey League play.
Eagle Rock 27, Temple City 6 — Can the Rams turn it around and challenge for a playoff spot in Rio Hondo League? Now I’m not so sure.
L.A. Wilson 24, Alhambra 13 — A tough loss for the Moors, who need some confidence going into league play
L.A. Douglass 57, Blair 0 — Another tough loss for the Vikings.
Glendale 23, South Pasadena 7 — Tigers early-season struggles continue

FRIDAY NIGHT ROUNDUP: San Marino rolls over Nogales

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PrepXtra Postgame Show

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It might not quite be the Turkey Tussle between Muir and Pasadena, but the La Salle’s annual battle with fellow Pasadena private Maranatha is nearly as intense. The two area schools will renew their rivalry when they square off at La Salle to highlight tonight’s action in the fourth week of the high school football season. The night’s other intriguing matchup up pits San Dimas traveling to No. 1 Monrovia. Usually, this is a playoff preview. But Monrovia, with running back Kurt Scoby, might be too much firepower for the Saints, who are off to an 0-3 start. Monrovia is 2-0. Crescenta Valley and La Canada have their 210 East rivalry, and renew it tonight at La Canada. I will be at the Maranatha-La Salle matchup and you can follow my updates on twitter at @steverramirez, or on our area scoreboard. We’ll wrap all the night’s action on our PrepXtra Live show tonight, beginning here about 11 p.m.




Tonight’s schedule and predictions
Maranatha at La Salle — Ramirez (La Salle); Lair (La Salle)
San Dimas at Monrovia — Ramirez (Monrovia); Lair (Monrovia)
Azusa at Arcadia — Ramirez (Arcadia); Lair (Arcadia)
Calvary Murrieta at Rio Hondo Prep — Ramirez (Rio); Lair (RH Prep)
Crescenta Valley at La Canada — Ramirez (CV); Lair (Crescenta Valley)
Keppel at Sierra Vista — Ramirez (SV); Lair (Sierra Vista)
Rosemead at Warren — Ramirez (Warren); Lair (Rosemead)
Salesian at Pasadena — Ramirez (Salesian); Lair (Salesian)
San Gabriel at Beverly Hills — Ramirez (Bev. Hills); Lair (Beverly Hills)
San Marino at Nogales — Ramirez (San Marino); Lair (San Marino)
South Pasadena at Glendale — Ramirez (South Pas); Lair (South Pas)
Westminster at Bosco Tech — Ramirez (Westminster); Lair (Westminster)
Alhambra at L.A. Wilson — Ramirez (Alhambra); Lair (Wilson)
Blair at Douglass — Ramirez (Douglass) ; Lair (Douglass)
Eagle Rock at Temple City — Ramirez (Temple City); Lair (Eagle Rock)
Mar Vista (Imperial Beach) at Gabrielino — Ramirez (Gabrielino); Lair (Gabrielino)
Verdugo Hills at Muir — Ramirez (Muir); Lair (Muir)
Flintridge Prep at Boron — Ramirez (Boron); Lair (Boron)

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