Colony High School’s football program has already scored on Los Altos before a snap has been taken.
The CIF-Southern Section office ruled Tuesday that Saturday’s Central Division championship game will not be played at Los Altos High due to concerns over stadium capacity and field conditions. The two schools agreed to move the game to Cerritos College. Kickoff is 7:30 p.m.
“These are not home games, these are (championship) games run by the CIF-Southern Section and the CIF-Southern Section bulletins clearly state that host schools can host these games if their facilities can safely handle the anticipated crowd and it’s a safe playing facility for the two schools involved,” CIF spokesperson Thom Simmons said Tuesday afternoon. “After touring the facility, Glenn Martinez, in his capacity as administrator of football for the CIF-Southern Section, determined that Los Altos did not meet those requirements.
“And that required us to ask them to consider other possibilities.”
Colony almost immediately balked at the idea of playing the game at Los Altos. Following Monday’s luncheon for teams in the finals, Colony officials went to Los Altos and walked the field and took pictures which were sent to the CIF-Southern Section office for review. Los Altos officials were unaware of the visit.
Martinez toured the stadium on Tuesday afternoon and met with officials from both schools before deciding that the venue needed changing.
Los Altos resisted the idea of moving the venue, partly because it plays on a natural-grass surface which is more conducive to the Conquerors’ style of play. Los Altos is a run-first team with a sizable offensive line. Colony runs a spread offense and is predicated on speed, which makes the Titans better suited to artificial turf.
“The playing surface shouldn’t really matter,” Los Altos head coach Dale Ziola said. “Two of our three playoff games, we had to go and play on the road on artificial turf despite practicing on a natural grass surface. Now, it’s our home game, so why should it have to be different the other way around?”