About Steve Ramirez

Steve Ramirez has covered prep sports for San Gabriel Valley Newspapers since 1989.

Friday Night Final: Muir comes up short in Pac League showdown; St. Francis rolls; Poly routs Rio

Muir plays Crescenta Valley at Muir High School in Pasadena during Friday night's game, on October 24, 2014. (Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz/Pasadena Star-News)

Muir plays Crescenta Valley at Muir High School in Pasadena during Friday night’s game, on October 24, 2014. (Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz/Pasadena Star-News)


PASADENA — The Muir High School football team’s hopes of repeating as Pacific League champion took a big hit on Friday night as visiting Crescenta Valley proved its undefeated record is no fluke.
The Falcons used two second-half touchdown passes by quarterback Brian Gadsby to post a 38-26 win over the Mustangs. With just two league games remaining for both teams, it would take something unforeseen for Crescenta Valley not to win the league championship.
Crescenta Valley improved to 8-0 overall and 5-0 in league. Muir fell to 4-4 overall and 4-1 in league. The Mustangs also had their four-game win streak snapped.

– Aram Tolegian

SANTA FE SPRINGS — Some viewed the St. Francis High School football team’s Friday night encounter at St. Paul as the ultimate trap game.
But it was the host Swordsmen who got caught.
Jeremiah Martin threw for 200 yards and three scores and the Golden Knights showed no signs of last week’s big win over Cathedral with a 49-10 victory at St. Paul in an Angelus League game.
Dylan Crawford had seven receptions for 120 yards and two touchdowns and Mason Williams and Andrew MacKinnon had return scores for Golden Knights (8-0, 3-0).
Jacob Maier accounted for 96 yards and a touchdown for St. Paul (4-4, 1-2).
St. Francis put it away by halftime. The Golden Knights were nearly perfect during the first two quarters and took a 35-10 lead at the break.
St. Francis, which outgained St. Paul 217-134, in the first half, scored on three of its first four possessions, had an interception return for a touchdown and a punt return for a score.

– Stephen Ramirez
LA CANADA — The Dynamic Duo of Glazier and Shohfi put on a show.
San Marino quarterback Carson Glazier and wide receiver JP Shohfi helped solidify the Titans’ hold on, at the very least, the No. 2 spot in the Rio Hondo League as they defeated host La Canada 55-14 Friday night.
Glazier had a fantastic game, going 14 for 21 for 361 yards and six touchdown passes and two interceptions. Glazier threw touchdown passes of 16, 39, 69, 43, 49 and 46 yards. Not to outdone, he also ran for a 14-yard touchdown.
Glazier’s favorite target was Shohfi as the duo connected on four touchdown passes.
When told about his stats, Glazier was all smiles but also humble.
“It was awesome! But it’s not my job to score touchdowns,” he said. “It’s my job to win games, and get closer to the playoffs.”

– Guillermo Tovar
ROUNDUP: Poly ends losing skein to Rio, routs Kares
Undefeated Pasadena Poly ended an eight-year losing streak to Rio Hondo Prep, smashing the host Kares, 51-12, in a Prep League game on Friday night.
The victory ended Rio Hondo Prep’s 28-game Prep League winning streak on the night the Kares celebrated their 50th anniversary and on their homecoming night. Poly last defeated Rio Hondo 20-0 in 2006. Poly won the league title that season.
Running back Griffin Carter led the Panthers (8-0, 2-0) with five touchdowns, four on the ground and a 58-yard TD pass from Parker Matthews. He finished with 177 yards as the Panthers led, 42-0, at the half.
Vincent Porter caught a 94-yard TD pass from Matthews and Dylan Hanel rushed for 87 yards.

1. St. Francis (8-0) def. St. Paul, 49-10
2. Monrovia (7-1) def. South Pasadena, 32-6
3. Muir (4-4) lost to Crescenta Valley, 38-26
4. San Marino (6-2) def. La Canada, 55-14
5. Maranatha (9-0) def. Heritage Chr., 42-24
6. La Canada (6-2) lost to San Marino, 55-14
7. Pasadena Poly (8-0) def. Rio Hondo Prep, 51-12
8. South Pasadena (5-3) lost to Monrovia, 32-6
9. Pasadena (4-4) def. Glendale, 21-20
10. La Salle (3-5 lost to Salesian, 14-7
Arroyo 28, Gabrielino 6
Rosemead 48, Marshall 6
Duarte 49, Workman 9
Alhambra 49, Keppel 0
Montebello 20, San Gabriel 0
St. Anthony 59, Bosco Tech 0
Mary Star 38, Flintridge Prep 23
Temple City 53, Blair 28

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Thursday Final: Burroughs too much for Arcadia, 70-23

Arcadia plays Burroughs at Burroughs High School in Burbank during Thursday night's game, on October 23, 2014. (Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz/Pasadena Star-News)

Arcadia plays Burroughs at Burroughs High School in Burbank during Thursday night’s game, on October 23, 2014. (Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz/Pasadena Star-News)

By Keith Lair
The Arcadia High School football coaching staff was yelling out what host Burroughs was going to run in Thursday night’s Pacific League matchup,
The problem was that the Apaches had difficulty stopping the Indians’ offense.
“We didn’t have many answers,” Arcadia coach Andrew Policky said. “They are just the better football team than we are right now.”
Burroughs scored the first 10 times it had the ball en route to a 70-23 victory. Arcadia has yet to defeat Burroughs in the current league configuration and it was the most points the Apaches have given up in more than a decade.
Burroughs quarterback Andy Amela, who had missed the last three games because of a concussion, threw for four first-half touchdowns and completed 13 of 16 passes for 244 yards. He played on the opening series of the second half, but did not throw a pass.
“It felt good to finally get back,” the junior said. “It sucked sitting and watching. I came in pumped and wanting to play.”
The Indians (5-3, 3-2) scored on every drive of the first half for a 49-9 halftime lead. Erick Hernandez caught three of those touchdown passes and had six catches for 152 yards in the first half.

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Friday Night Rewind: St. Francis takes lead in Angelus with win at Cathedral; Muir looking good; San Marino routs rival South Pas

St. Francis celebrates after defeating Cathedral 52-41 during a prep football game at Cathedral High School in Los Angeles, Calif., Friday, Oct. 17, 2014. (Photo by Keith Birmingham/ Pasadena Star-News)

St. Francis celebrates after defeating Cathedral 52-41 during a prep football game at Cathedral High School in Los Angeles, Calif., Friday, Oct. 17, 2014. (Photo by Keith Birmingham/ Pasadena Star-News)


LOS ANGELES >> St. Francis High School ran for 271 yards and had 509 total, but the Golden Knights are in first place today because of their defense.
Avery Williams had two interceptions and St. Francis had three during a two-minute stretch in the fourth quarter to score a 52-41 victory over host Cathedral on Friday in a key Angelus League game.
Jeremiah Martin also accounted for 334 yards and three touchdowns for the Golden Knights, who improved to 7-0 and 2-0 in league play. Areg Nazarian rushed for 144 yards and two scores, and Williams also had a touchdown run for St. Francis, which opened the game with three scores on its first three possessions and closed it by scoring on four of six possessions in the second half.
Andrew Tovar threw for 456 yards and six touchdowns for the Phantoms, who slipped to 6-1 and 1-1. Tovar had 332 yards passing during the first two quarters.
“It’s just a great feeling to bounce back and come back in a game like this,” St. Francis coach Jim Bonds said. “We won the second half, 31-7. It was all three phrases. We said we’re going to get the ball kicked to us, we’re going to go down and score, stop them, and score again.
“The only thing different was we kicked a field goal on that second drive and were down by three instead of being up by a point. Guys hung in there, and they just kept battling. Our guys never gave up, and that tells a lot about our team.”
— Stephen Ramirez
ARCADIA — After a lackadaisical first half, Muir came out in the second half and looked like the dominating team many expect to see every Friday night. The Mustangs improved to 4-3 overall, but more importantly remain undefeated in Pacific League play at 3-0 as they beat host Arcadia 56-16 Friday night.
Normally such a lopsided win, especially in league play, would make a coach at the very least, content. But coach John Hardy Jr was not happy at all with his team’s effort.
“We had a bad week of practice and it showed,” said Hardy. “Guys didn’t take this game seriously like they needed to. I could’ve bailed them out by calling a couple of different plays (offensively and defensively). But I wanted them to struggle to see what it takes for a championship team. You have to practice hard every week and do the things to be a successful team.”
When asked what changed from the first half to the second half, Hardy didn’t mince any words.
“I had a conversation with them and I asked them if they were done ‘playing around’ and are ready to play football. Or do they want a repeat of the first half. And they responded.”

– Guillermo Tovar
SAN MARINO — San Marino High School hosted South Pasadena in the 60th meeting between the schools with the all-time series tied at 28-28-3 for the Titans’ Rio Hondo League opener, and the Tigers came in riding a five-game win streak.
On Friday night the host Titans, who appeared this week in the rankings of the CIF-SS Central Division for the first time at No. 10 despite losing their league opener to Monrovia, got back to their winning ways as San Marino defeated South Pasadena 57-14 to claim the traveling Paul Crowley Cup and the overall series lead.
“It was a great victory, absolutely a great victory,” San Marino coach Mike Hobbie said. “I knew they were going to be tough. I didn’t know we’d beat them like this, but we were lucky we got the turnovers in key spots.”
The win for San Marino (5-2, 1-1) means Hobbie, who is in his fourth year as head coach, extends his perfect record against the rest of the Rio Hondo, other than four losses to perennial champion Monrovia, to 13-0.
Titan quarterback Carson Glazier, who threw for six touchdowns last week with five in the first half, threw for another four before the break against the Tigers and finished with six once again. The junior finished 21 of 28 for 375 yards, the six scores, and no turnovers.

– Nathan Cambridge

Rosemead High School scored twice in the first two minutes of the third quarter to take a 33-14 victory over Gabrielino and a commanding lead in the Mission Valley League on Friday night.
Robbie Franco scored on a 45-yard run and Jordan Parham returned an interception 23 yards in the opening minutes of the third quarter for a 27-7 Panthers (3-4, 3-0) lead.
Junior quarterback Steven Nava passed for 211 yards on 10 of 25 attempts with two TDs, 5 yards to Joseph Rosales and 59 yards to Louis Luna. The Panthers intercepted Gabrielino quarterback Elijah Peters three times and they also recovered a fumble.

1. St. Francis (7-0) def. Cathedral, 52-41
2. Monrovia (6-1) def. Temple City, 56-6
3. Muir (4-3) def. Arcadia, 56-16
4. Maranatha (8-0) def. Village Christian, 26-3
5. San Marino (5-2) def. South Pasadena, 57-14
6. La Canada (6-1) def. Blair, 36-0
7. Pasadena Poly (7-0) def. CSDR, 48-14 (Thurs)
8. Rio Hondo Prep (3-4) lost to Fillmore, 27-0
9. South Pasadena (5-2) lost to San Marino, 57-14
10. La Salle (3-4) lost to Harvard-Westlake, 39-3
Rosemead 33, Gabrielino 14
Gladstone 47, Duarte 7
Bell Gardens 36, Alhambra 7
Montebello 23, Keppel 0
Schurr 55, San Gabriel 0
Burroughs/Burbank 17, Pasadena 14
St. Monica 50, Bosco Tech 12
Firebaugh vs. Flintridge Prep at La Canada HS, 7 p.m.

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Friday Night Final: Muir rises, La Salle falls

Muir's Jaylyn Newson (25) is hugged by quarterback Chase Keough (3) after running for a touchdown against Burbank in the first half of a prep football game at Muir High School in Pasadena, Calif., Friday, Oct. 10, 2014. (Photo by Keith Birmingham/ Pasadena Star-News)

Muir’s Jaylyn Newson (25) is hugged by quarterback Chase Keough (3) after running for a touchdown against Burbank in the first half of a prep football game at Muir High School in Pasadena, Calif., Friday, Oct. 10, 2014. (Photo by Keith Birmingham/ Pasadena Star-News)

Muir 31, Burbank 0

PASADENA — If there was any doubt about whether the Muir High School football team had really turned things around following an 0-3 start, the Mustangs put it to rest on Friday night.
Muir’s defense put the clamps on Burbank and eventually the Mustangs’ offense joined in the act and it all added up to a 31-0 Pacific League win.
“I kept saying to judge us later on in the season,” Muir head coach John Hardy said. “We’re young and I think we needed to lose in order to learn how to win.
“That’s what we expected as a staff, 0-3 never bothered us. We let the spectators spectate and we’re here coaching and we know what we have. We’ll get better each week and then we’ll take a nice run at the playoffs.”

– Aram Tolegian

St. Paul 28, La Salle 21, OT
PASADENA — St. Paul High School football coach Rick Zepeda believed this could be a season of resurgence for his football team.
The Swordsmen showed why Friday night.
Jacob Maier accounted for 185 yards and four touchdowns, including throwing the game-winning pass in overtime and St. Paul opened Angelus League play with a 28-21 victory over host La Salle.
St. Paul, which had been outscored, 96-0 the last two weeks, improved to 4-2. La Salle, getting 164 yards passing and two touchdowns from Will Pyburn, slipped to 3-3.
The Lancers, who joined the Angelus League after winning the Del Rey the past two seasons, tied with less than a minute to play when Pyburn lofted a pass in the left corner to Isiah Spencer to knot it at 21.
But Maier, who rushed for a touchdown, came through on third and 22 in overtime, tossing 26 yards to Damian Escobedo for a 28-21 lead.
La Salle, which got 87 yards rushing from A.J. Akobian, drove inside St. Paul’s 5 on its possession, but on fourth and goal from the 3, Pyburn dropped the shotgun snap from center and was sacked at the 5 to end the game.

– Stephen Ramirez
Monrovia 48, San Marino 42
MONROVIA — Last season’s Rio Hondo league football action came to a climax with a de facto championship contest on the final game of the schedule, with Monrovia comfortably defeating San Marino for another crown.
On Friday night, those same two teams came out of the gates for this season’s slate of games as Monrovia, ranked No. 3 in CIF-SS Central Division, hosted San Marino, with the Wildcats winning 48-42, giving them their 33rd straight league win and the inside track to a seventh straight league title.
“We knew it was going to be a dogfight,” Monrovia first-year coach Chris Stevens said.

– Nathan Cambridge
1. St. Francis (6-0) def. Harvard-Westlake, 21-7
2. Monrovia (5-1) def. San Marino, 48-42
3. Maranatha (7-0) def. Cerritos Valley Chr., 38-13
4. San Marino (4-2) lost to Monrovia, 48-42
5. La Salle (3-3) lost to St. Paul, 28-21, OT
6. Muir (3-3) def. Burbank, 31-0
7. Pasadena Poly (5-0) vs. Firebaugh, today
8. La Canada (5-1) def. Temple City, 24-7
9. Rio Hondo Prep (3-3) def. Flintridge Prep, 49-26
10. South Pasadena (5-1) def. Blair, 55-0
Gabrielino 35, Mountain View 14
South El Monte 60, Marshall 0
Baldwin Park 42, Duarte 14
Alhambra 45, San Gabriel 0
Bell Gardens 56, Keppel 0
Pasadena 42, Arcadia 20
Bishop Montgomery 49, Bosco Tech 0

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Star-News Top 10 Football Rankings: St. Francis still riding high at No. 1 after perfect nonleague

St. Francis still No. 1 (Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz/Pasadena Star-News)

St. Francis still No. 1 (Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz/Pasadena Star-News)

1. St. Francis (5-0) –
Defense deserves credit, too.
2. Monrovia (4-1) – Will ‘Cats speed bury Titans?
3. Maranatha (6-0) – Big favorites to win Olympic League
4. San Marino (4-1) – Can Titans get over Monrovia hump?
5. La Salle (3-2) – Doable game vs. St. Paul
6. Muir (2-3) – Big test looms vs. Burbank
7. Pasadena Poly (5-0) – Thinking Prep League title, and why not?
8. La Canada (4-1) – Where does Sparty fit in RHL?
9. Rio Hondo Prep (2-3) – Still the Prep League favorite?
10. South Pasadena (4-1) – Defense was solid yet again

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Friday Final: Rosemead edges Arroyo; Muir wins in a rout

Rosemead defeats Arroyo 28-27 at Arroyo High School in El Monte during Friday night's game on October 3, 2014. (Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz/Pasadena Star-News)

Rosemead defeats Arroyo 28-27 at Arroyo High School in El Monte during Friday night’s game on October 3, 2014. (Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz/Pasadena Star-News)


EL MONTE >> Having not beaten rival Arroyo High School since 2008, there was little chance that Rosemead football coach Marc Paramo wasn’t going to go for two and the win.
That’s exactly what Paramo did after his team scored on a touchdown pass with 11 seconds left to pull within one of the Knights. And when Robbie Franco bulled into the end zone moments later, a great weight was lifted off the Rosemead program with a 28-27 win on Friday night.
Rosemead, which didn’t win a game during the nonleague slate, improved to 2-4 overall and 2-0 in the Mission Valley League. Arroyo saw its four-game win streak snapped and fell to 4-2 overall and 1-1 in league.

Rosemead coach Marc Paramo: “When we were on the 15-yard line, I told my assistant coach upstairs ‘Get your play ready, because we’re going for two. We’re not going to kick it, I’m proud of our guys. It is a huge hump. If we would have lost, we would have stewed over it for all of our bye week.”
Arroyo coach Jim Singiser: “Those guys (Rosemead), they earned it. It was a good high school football game. I think in the last couple seconds, they wanted it more than we did. I’m happy for them.”
– Aram Tolegian
PASADENA >> Quarterback Chase Keough put on a first-half aerial clinic to help host Muir get its second Pacific League victory as the Mustangs defeated Burroughs 42-14 Friday night.
Keough completed 13 of 16 passes for 340 yards and four touchdowns before being pulled at the start of the fourth quarter, well after the game was in hand.

– Guillermo Tovar
EL MONTE >> Two teams, Mountain View and Maranatha high schools, heading in opposite directions met Friday night in a nonleague game and the final outcome was predictable.
With four games remaining in the regular season for both teams, Maranatha remains on a path to an undefeated season, while Mt. View is still seeking its first win.
The visiting Minutemen (6-0), top-ranked in CIF-SS Northwest Division, defeated the Vikings 41-6.
Maranatha, off to its best start since the 2011 season, improved its record to 6-0, while the Vikings remained winless at 0-5.
Minutemen quarterback Eli Snyder passed for two touchdowns and threw for 156 yards.
The senior, who is now only 18 yards short of 5,000 yards passing in his three-year career, was 9 for 13 in just over one half of action.

– John Sherrard
1. St. Francis (5-0) def. Calabasas, 45-7 (Thursday)
2. Monrovia (4-1), idle
3. Maranatha (6-0) def. Mountain View, 41-6
4. San Marino (4-1), idle
5. La Salle (3-2), idle
6. Muir (2-4) def. Burroughs, 42-14
7. Pasadena Poly (4-0) vs. St. Genvieve on Saturday
8. La Canada (4-1), idle
9. Rio Prep (2-3), idle
10. South Pasadena (4-1) def. Beverly Hills, 42-9 (Thursday)
El Monte 60, Marshall 13
South El Monte 40, Gabrielino 36
Azusa 34, Temple City 28
Glendale 28, Arcadia 14
Pasadena 47, Hoover 0
Cantwell 45, Bosco Tech 0

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Ready, Set, Action! Eli Snyder enjoying latest starring role as Maranatha’s QB

By Stephen Ramirez
Pasadena Star-News

PASADENA >> Eli Snyder is no stranger to being in the spotlight.
The Maranatha High School senior, who is in his third season as the Minutemen’s starting quarterback, has also acted in three movies, including the popular cult film, “300.”
The talent he honed in the latter has helped him succeed in the former, where he’s become one of the top quarterbacks in the Valley.
“My dad (Zack Snyder) is a director, so I was able to be in a few of his films,” said Eli Snyder , who looks to add to his success when the Minutemen play at Mountain View on Friday. “It kind of made me mature quicker. I was in front of 100 people on a set, so the pressure was on a little bit. I was only 8-years-old.
“It helped me mature a little bit. It makes you realize what you have to do when the spotlight’s on.”

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Thursday Gameday Countdown: St. Francis preps for Angelus League with easy win over Calabasas

LA CANADA >> A blocked punt certainly does not change the makeup of a football game.
But John Carroll’s block certainly had a lasting effect Thursday night. The St. Francis High School senior blocked a punt, picked it up at the 2-yard line and scored early in the first half. It gave the undefeated Golden Knights a 14-0 lead en route to a 45-7 nonleague victory over visiting Calabasas.
“The ball got snapped and I ran right through and blocked it,” Carroll said. “It felt better than scoring that way than catching and running for a touchdown. The team got a little hyped. We got excited about that.”

– Keith Lair
The Rebels (3-2) won their third consecutive nonleague game Thursday afternoon in a game played in North Hollywood.
Riley Jones caught two touchdown passes from Andew Tsangeos. The Rebels built a 35-0 lead in the third quarter. It was the Vikings’ first loss of the season.
– Keith Lair
South Pasadena 42, Beverly Hills 9

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