St. Francis shows a lot in 35-21 loss to Serra; Muir, La Salle clinch league titles; Maranatha takes a big step

GARDENA – St. Francis didn’t shock the high school football world Friday. But they did put a scare in nationally-ranked Serra.
Jalen Greene contributed 324 yards and five touchdowns as the host Cavaliers clinched at least a share of the Mission League title after rallying for a 35-21 victory over the Golden Knights.
Serra, ranked No. 6 nationally and No. 2 in the state by MaxPreps.com, shutout St. Francis in the second half to improve to 9-0 overall and 4-0 in league play.
St. Francis, getting 306 yards passing from Tyler Gangi, slipped to 8-1 and 3-1.
Friday also saw Muir and La Salle clinch shares of their respective league titles, clinching No. 1 playoff spots in the process. The Mustangs clinched the Pacific League with a 39-26 victory over Crescenta Valley, while the Lancers overwhelmed Cantwell, 35-10, to wrap up the Del Rey League. Maranatha took a big step toward the Olympic League crown with a 34-24 victory over Whittier Christian. The Minutemen can play for the league title week at Valley Chrisitian, which is at Heritage Christian on Saturday. Rosemead set up a title showdown against Arroyo in the Mission Valley with a 22-21 victory over Gabrielino, who needs to win next week to clinch a playoff bid.

– Steve Ramirez
@steverramirez on Twitter

GANGI
HOW THE TOP TEN FARED
1. St. Francis (8-1) lost to Serra, 35-21 –
The Golden Knights put a scare in the the Cavs, ranked No. 2 in the state by MaxPreps. St. Francis, which led 21-7 at one point, should be a player in the upcoming Western Division playoffs.
2. Monrovia (8-1) def. Blair, 54-0 — The Wildcats have yet to give up a point in the Rio Hondo League, outscoring their four opponents, 131-0. They should get a challenge from San Marino when the two battle for the league title.
3. Muir (8-1) def. Crescenta Valley, 39-26 – Dejon Williams threw for 172 yards and Taeon Mason returned the opening kick for a TD as the Mustangs wrapped up the Pacific League. They can run the table in league for the second consecutive season with a win over Pasadena next week in the annual Turkey Tussle.
4. Rio Hondo (7-1) is at No. 7 Pasadena Poly (7-0) today – The winner wins the Prep League
5. San Marino (8-1) def. Temple City, 48-0 – The Titans set up next week’s showdown vs. Monrovia with an easy win.
6. La Salle (7-2) def. Cantwell, 35-10 – An impressive win for Lancers, who wrapped up their second consecutive Del Rey League crown.
8. Rosemead (8-1) def. No. 10 Gabrielino (6-3), 22-21 – The Panthers won their eighth consecutive game, but it was close. It sets up a showdown vs. Arroyo next week for the Mission Valley League title.
9. Maranatha de. Whittier Christian, 34-24 — The Jude Oliva conversion is almost complete. The win sets up a possible first-place showdwon at Cerritos Valley Christian next week.

OTHER SCORES
Bell Gardens 57, San Gabriel 10 –
The Matadors long season continues
Duarte 55, Bassett 27 – A big win for the Falcons, who kept their playoff hopes alive with the victory.
Mary Star 40, Bosco Tech 16 – The Tigers’ struggles continue
Burroughs 37, Arcadia 14 – A tough loss for the Apaches, who need to beat Crescenta Valley next week to earn a playoff spot
Glendale 23, Pasadena 20 – An impressive showing by the Bulldogs, whose face Muir in the Turkey Tussle next week
La Canada 21, South Pasadena 9 – A big victory over the Spartans, who now play Temple City for a playoff spot next week
Flintridge Prep 21, Hawkins 13 — The Rebels have won two consecutive games

  • At least we have Blair

    I don’t know if I’d be so sure about South Pas over La Canada. On the one hand, against four common opponents, South Pas has had the better margin of defeat (or victory). On the other hand, against a fifth common opponent (Glendale), La Canada actually won, while South Pas was clearly beaten by a better team. Back to the one hand, South Pas has three very good backs. But, the other hand again, after their loss to Temple City last week they looked like a broken team.

    I can’t imagine that confidence is high on either team at the moment. I suspect it may be higher at LC, simply because they had no illusions of keeping their last two games close, whereas SP had to be disappointed at losing to TC and at losing so badly. Each team, of course, is going to have some setbacks tonight. I think this game will be decided ultimately on how each team emotionally weathers these setbacks.

  • Bob Anon

    What a nice bounceback win for Coach Sims and LC. I did not expect them to beat South Pas.

    How come Monrovia only beat Blair 54-0. I’m not talking smack as they are clearly capable of putting up over 100 points on Blair. Why the “restraint” against Blair that wasn’t shown against other RHL opponents?

    • observantcat

      Monrovia knows what struggles Blair has so why try and prove who can score more on a defenseless team when other teams in the RHL are actually competing to make a game of it. Monrovia had no need to even start their first team and allow a whole bunch of sophomores a chance to compete in maybe some of their first Varsity game, The LaCanada game was more of a fluke because all 77 of our points came halfway through the 3rd quarter and a few of the TD’s were defensive td’s.

  • Titan Football Fan

    Big week next week for RHL. LC and TC for 3rd place s/b a great game. The teams are well-coached and match up nicely — TC’s power versus LC’s speed. SM and Monrovia for 1st place. Don’t count out SM. Coach Hobbie has the team hitting on all cylinders. Whatever happens next week, I predict 1st round playoff victories for all three RHL reps.

    • LC Parent

      Please don’t call LC well coached.

      • Titan Football Fan

        okay; you’re much closer to it. just observing what appears to be good discipline (few penalties; apparent game plan, etc.). on game day, at least, team seems to be focused and ready to compete on the field. rooting for a good game next week for both LC and TC — injury free and competitive.

        • LC Parent

          I was at the LC @ SM game. What appeared to be the gameplan?? Fake punt?? The only play that worked was a TD on an ISO because the FB cut the SM LB. Our normal gameplan is toss/sweep. We ran it once, for negative yards. I didn’t see a gameplan. Once it was stopped, there was nothing else in our quiver. I’m pretty sure SM scored almost every time they had the ball. Not sure we have a defensive gameplan either. Franzen is a joke, so I’m sure nothing will change. It’s frustrating to watch. Really surprised by the SP SM score after playing them this week. Their defense/offense might be worse or less prepared.

  • 626

    Outside of the Pathon Rucker years at Glendale, Steve’s comment about PHS’s game vs. Glendale would have been tantamount to blasphemy to most PHS alums and fans of yesteryear:

    Glendale 23, Pasadena 20 – An impressive showing by the Bulldogs, whose face Muir in the Turkey Tussle next week.

    This is what is has come to for the Pasadena High Bulldogs!? An “impressive showing” in a LOSS to a 2-6 GLENDALE team who was 0-5 in league!?!?!?!? Tragedies are events like yesterday’s LAX shooting, not losses in sports like this one. This is no tragedy. But it is definitely a damn shame that the PHS football program has spiraled so for so fast.

    • woanelly

      626, like aram said ” based on his source there are at least 30 pasadena kids playing elsewhere”. Its the thing to do for those kids from the robinson park area and we know thats the last bastion of talent (athletic wise). sorry no caps, being lazy. “tussle” this week whats your prediction?

      • 626

        By prediction, I’m sure you mean by which quarter will the officials start the running clock…again….it’s a damn shame.

        • woanelly

          your right the score is not important, I just hope the fans have a good time and the players play hard with no indication of letting or giving up. wish the mustangs well in the playoffs. I hear this is Muir’s head coaches last year, right when things were geting good.

  • mam242

    I don’t think Monrovia needs to put an 70 or 80 spot up against Blair. I am sure our Monrovia players respect the fact that Blair goes out there every Friday playing with heart knowing they are most likely going to have a zero win season. Besides, if I were a coach I would not want to give San Marino a tape of an excess scoring drives to study.

  • Eastern Ave.

    On ideal Novemenber Saturday, the “little guys” from Rio Hondo Prep ran over Pasadena Poly on Poly’s Babcock field 60 – 21.
    Senior Nate Tayco (Tie-ko), ran for over 200 yards and scored a career best of 6 touchdowns.
    The Kares came out in their usual business demeanor and proceeded to prove to all in attendance that they RHP was the better football team.
    Poly had some fight in them early on, keeping it close, but after a couple of big hits by the Rio defense Poly looked a bit shell shocked. They were never really in the game after the midway point of the 2nd quarter.
    Rio scored 26 in the 3rd quarter and pulled the starters in quarter 4.
    Both teams will qualify for post season play.

  • dectorem

    Beautiful day in Pasadena for football. Pasadena Poly came into the contest 8-0 with a very respectable #2 ranking in the CIF northeast division poll. All that changed on Saturday when they faced a real meat and potatoes team in Rio Hondo Prep. It was obvious that Poly (up to this point) had not faced a physical football team as they looked out of sorts and simply outplayed by the stalwart RHP. On Poly’s first punt play, the punter,#12, who is also their quarterback was absolutely rocked and decleated by RHP’s #42 and from that point on Poly never looked as though they had the confidence or ability to hang with the champs. Perhaps a more challenging pre league schedule could help a team like Poly to prepare for a real test such as they get when playing RHP. Playing cupcake teams with sure wins and high scores under your belt dont get you ready for battle but only leave you craving more sugar. Pasadena Poly needs to order up more solid food before starting league play. Just my 2 cents for what it’s worth