Charter Oak, St. Francis, South El Monte lone survivors on elimination night in the SGV

Friday’s Featured game stories and final scores

Charter Oak rallies to reach semifinals: At first, Charter Oak looked like it did not belong on the same field as Westlake, giving up 21 first-quarter points in the first quarter Friday.But the Chargers refused to quit and erased the deficit to defeat Westlake on the road 39-28 in the Southern Section Division 3 quarterfinals.
“I told this team to just play one down at a time,” Charter Oak coach Lou Farrar said. “Just play it one down at a time and one play at a time. This team has more heart then any team I have ever coached and I couldn’t be more proud.”

St. Francis makes bold fake-field goal call in fourth quarter to defeat Citrus Hill: St. Francis scored on a fake field goal in the fourth quarter en route to a 30-20 victory over Citrus Hill on Friday night in a CIF-Southern Section Division 3 quarterfinal round playoff game.
“I think we got away with one there,” St. Francis head coach James Bonds said. “That was huge.”
Isaac Cordova tossed it to Conor McGrory on 4th-and-9 from the 9 as St. Francis (11-1 overall) knocked off the No. 2 seed to earn a spot in the semifinals.
“We saw that it was a possibility on film, but I didn’t really like the look,” Bonds said. “(But) it’s just a couple of guys making big plays.”

Penalties doom Damien in loss: Capistrano Valley turned a close game at halftime into a rout with 21 points in the first three minutes of the third quarter and went on to defeat Damien, 34-7, in Friday’s CIF Southern Section Division 4 football quarterfinals.
Capistrano Valley (12-0), the top seed in Division 4, advances to the semifinals for the second straight year after reaching the Division 5 title game a year ago. The Cougars will face the winner between Corona Del Mar and Downey next week.

South El Monte wins rematch: In last season’s CIF-SS Division 12 semifinal, South El Monte and Rancho Christian entered halftime tied at two scores apiece.A year later, South El Monte and Rancho Christian entered halftime with the same score in Friday’s CIF-SS Division 12 quarterfinal.
In a back-and-forth second-round playoff matchup, all it took was an interception late in the game as South El Monte stopped Rancho Christian in its tracks to win 42-35 and advance to the division semifinals.

No. 1 South Hills falls to Burbank: With a No. 1 seed in the CIF Southern Section Division 7 playoffs, South Hills High School had a big target on its back.
Visiting Burbank took aim and came away with a 42-30 victory in a quarterfinal game Friday night.South Hills suffered a huge blow when senior starting quarterback RJ Stearns departed with an ankle injury in the second quarter and the Huskies (10-2) leading 17-10.

Montebello couldn’t overcome slow start: Apple Valley High running back Donovan Ferguson knew immediately after the snap that he had a chance.
After the Sun Devils forced a Montebello punt during Friday night’s CIF Southern Section Division 10 second-round playoff game, they handed the ball to Ferguson on an outside run from their own 11-yard line.

Late safety gives Saugus football edge over St. Paul: Saugus pulled out an improbable victory Friday night, recovering a fumble in the end zone for a safety with 2:46 remaining in the game en route to stunning St. Paul 28-27 in a CIF Southern Section Division 6 quarterfinal.
St. Paul (5-7) appeared to be on its way to the win after trailing by 12 points in the fourth quarter before scoring a pair of touchdowns to take the lead.

Rio Hondo Prep falls to Orange: Many people who know Joseph Martinez call him “Jo Jo.” They were also shouting, “Go! Go!” on Friday night when Martinez ran for 179 yards and two touchdowns on 20 carries to lead Orange past Rio Hondo Prep, 27-14, in the second round of the CIF Southern Section Division 13 playoffs at El Modena High.
Martinez, who missed time earlier this season with hamstring and knee injuries, is all the way back now and said he was 100 percent “hyped up,” to lead the Panthers into the semifinals.

CIF Southern Section Playoffs
Friday’s Quarterfinal results
Division 3

Charter Oak 39, Westlake 28
St. Francis 30, Citrus Hill 20
Division 4
Capistrano Valley 24, Damien 7
Murrieta Mesa 54, Glendora 20
Division 6
Bishop Diego 59, San Marino 21
Saugus 28, St. Paul 27
Division 7
Burbank 42, South Hills 30
El Modena 35, Diamond Ranch 7
Division 10
Apple Valley 59, Montebello 28
Division 11
Katella 41, Arcadia 35, OT
Rancho Mirage 27, Arroyo 21, OT
Division 12
Santa Maria 42, Schurr 21
South El Monte 42, Rancho Christian 35
Division 13
Orange 27, Rio Hondo Prep 14
Silver Valley 35, Nogales 29, 3 OT

Friday’s Semifinals
Division 3

Charter Oak at Rancho Verde, 7 p.m.
El Toro at St. Francis, 7 p.m.
Division 11
Covina at Culver City, 7 p.m.
Division 12
Santa Maria at South El Monte, 7 p.m.

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Covina football punches tickets to semifinals for first time since 2011

Even when Covina looked comfortably ahead, you knew Westminster and its high-powered offense was capable of making a run —  and it did — but the Colts had enough in the tank to fend off every rally.

Covina got another big performance from quarterback Nin Burns II, who threw for 265 yards and three touchdowns and rushed for 105 yards and a touchdown, and defeated Westminster 42-28 in a CIF Southern Section Division 11 quarterfinal Thursday night at Covina District Field.

Covina (10-2) advances to the semifinals for the first time since 2011 and will await the winner of Friday’s quarterfinal between top seed Culver City (10-1) and Coachella Valley (9-2).

Covina opened the fourth quarter with Burns completing a 7-yard touchdown pass to Tristan Sprague to push the Colts’ lead to 14 points after Westminster (9-3) had scored 21 consecutive points to pull within a touchdown.

The Lions answered back on the ensuing drive, scoring on Christian Jaime’s 2-yard touchdown to cut the Colts’ lead to 35-28 with 7:37 to go.

But Burns answered back again, throwing a 40-yard touchdown pass to Danny Urrea with 5:42 left to go back up 14 points and that iced it.

“They made us work, absolutely,” Covina coach Joe Brown said. “We got off to this great start and thought we were rolling, then they came back. But our kids stepped up when we needed to and (Burns) was the difference maker for us. He put things in his hands and even called his own play and hit Urrea for a touchdown to close it out.”

Urrea hauled in nine passes for 121 yards and a touchdown and Sprague had seven receptions for 101 yards and a touchdown.

Westminster quarterback Noah Melbon had a solid night, throwing for 217 yards and two touchdowns, and Jaime rushed for 96 yards and two touchdowns.

But the Lions fell down 28-0 and were chasing the Colts the rest of the night.

“Kids showed some heart and it’s going to eat at us forever,” Westminster coach Ted McMillen said. “We gave them three touchdowns, literally gave it to them. But our kids showed some heart to battle back so I’m proud of them. But it was a tough one to take.”

The first half was wild as Covina raced to a four-touchdown lead only to watch Westminster cut it in half by the break.

Even though Covina dominated the opening quarter, it didn’t get rewarded until Ailaoa Tauvao’s fourth-down run, hustling in from a yard to give the Colts a 7-0 lead with 2:13 to go in the quarter.

The Colts doubled the lead when Burns, who was just trying to get a first down on third-and-short, got outside and found a lane down the right side for a 68-yard touchdown and 14-0 lead.

Westminster was putting its best drive together and was getting ready to score when it fumbled the snap and Jacob Gregory recovered for the Colts.

Covina turned it into points a couple plays later when Burns found Sprague wide open down the left sideline for 55-yard touchdown and 21-0 lead halfway through the second quarter.

Things started really going bad for Westminster when Jaime had the ball stripped out of his hands by Gregory, who simply ran the other way untouched for a 62-yard touchdown and 28-0 lead.

But Westminster closed the half with two quick touchdowns.

After Melbon’s 11-yard touchdown pass to Malachi Mesa, the Lions got it back when the Colts coughed up the ball on the ensuing kickoff at their own 32.

The Lions made them pay. On fourth-and-8, Melbon dropped a perfect pass to the corner for Joel Navarro, who got a foot inbounds for the touchdown to cut the Colts’ lead to 28-14 with 1:40 to go until half.

Westminster made it 21 unanswered points on the opening drive of the third quarter when Jaime scored on a five yard run to cut the Colts’ lead to 28-21, but that’s as close as it would get.

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Arroyo in rematch; Damien takes on top seed and quarterfinal football predictions

When the Division 11 playoff brackets were released, it was easy to look ahead to the possibility of a rematch between second seed Arroyo (11-0) and Rancho Mirage (8-3).

Arroyo won its first championship since 1986 defeating Rancho Mirage in last year’s Division 12 championship, going for it on a gutty two-point conversion in overtime to win, 35-34.

Arroyo hosted last year’s title game, but Rancho Mirage, a 41-39 first-round winner over Jurupa Hills, is hosting Arroyo, a 35-6 winner over Lakeside, in Friday’s quarterfinals at 7 p.m.

“Hey, it’s an opportunity to play them and do it again,” Arroyo coach Jim Singiser said. “The stakes are not what they were last year, but to get to the place we want to go and play for another ring, you have to go through it, and we have to make the trip and go face them.”

Last year, Rancho Mirage arrived from the long busride 20-30 minutes before the game, something the Knights want to avoid for the 2 or 2 ½ hour drive to the desert.

“We want to give ourselves a two-hour cushion if we can,” Singiser. “We want to get there early, eat some snacks, hydrate and be ready to go.”

Singiser knows Rancho Mirage will have extra motivation to face them again. The challenge for Arroyo after winning its first title in 30 years was finding the same motivation and hunger that it took to win last year’s title.

Sure, the Knights are undefeated and answered every call, but Singiser wants to see more.

“I have said to anyone that will listen that this team is different,” Singiser said. “After you win a championship, guys are sometimes asking why should I continue to play. Some guys say they won a ring and want to focus on baseball, wrestling or getting a job.

“When you spend a couple months focusing on those other things, there is not the same dedication in the weight room, practice field or the little things. All pre-season and even in league I didn’t know if we had that edge. We found it in games against Covina, against Schurr and mustered it up against South El Monte and in last week’s win.

“But I have to give this team credit too, they’ve won a lot of games the last two years and they’ve been able to rise to the occasion when they have to. This week is no different.”

Rancho Mirage has won five straight, but struggled earlier in the season with three straight losses, one of which was to nearby Bell Gardens, 38-21.

“Earlier in the year they (Rancho Mirage) were trying to do things differently, a little more one on one up front,” Singiser said. “I don’t think they liked it, and they’re not running that stuff anymore. They’ve figured it out, are playing different and better and give them a lot of credit because they have a good coaching staff. It should be another great game.

Damien’s Warren Bryan had over 500 all-purpose yards in first-round win
Damien quarterback Warren Bryan’s numbers were staggering in last week’s 45-28 victory over Paso Robles that advanced the Spartans to Friday’s CIF Southern Section Division 4 quarterfinal at home against top-seed Capistrano Valley.

Bryan threw for 399 and yards and five touchdowns and also rushed for 138 yards and touchdown.

All in all, he combined for 537 yards total offense, by far his most complete game of the season.

“My take is he had a heck of a game,” Spartans coach Mark Paredes said. “We threw the ball a lot more than we have, but he was prepared and our team was prepared. We’re also starting to get more healthy.”

One of the players who had been playing through nagging injuries but seems to be on the mend is senior receiver Mikey McCauley, who had eight receptions for 162 yards and three touchdowns.

“Everyone goes through injuries this time of year, but I like where we’re health-wise right now,” Paredes said.

For Bryan, talking about his numbers or what he did personally speaks for itself.

“It was a great game by all of us,” Bryan said. “Our offensive line was giving me time in the pocket, coaches were calling great plays, guys were making catches and I ran when I had to the opportunity to run, and all happens because everyone is doing their job.”

Damien’s (7-4) reward is hosting top-seed and undefeated Capistrano Valley (11-0), a 35-6 first-round winner over Carter.

Capistrano Valley has an elite quarterback in junior Nathan Manning, who has thrown for 2,626 yards and 32 touchdowns.

But for the Spartans, who have play super teams like Rancho Cucamonga and Upland in the Baseline league, they will be ready.

“Capistrano Valley is a great football team and they’ve done an outstanding job, that’s why they’re the number one team in our division,” Paredes said. “But the Baseline league prepares you because you have to come to play every week. Not just against the Rancho Cucamonga’s or Upland’s, but against Chino Hills, Los Osos and Etiwanda. They are all good football teams.”

CIF Southern Section Playoffs
Football games and predictions
All games start at 7 p.m., unless noted
Thursday’s Quarterfinals
Division 11

Westminster at Covina — (COVINA)
Friday’s Quarterfinals
Division 3

Charter Oak at Westlake — (CHARTER OAK)
St. Francis at Citrus Hill — (CITRUS HILL)
Division 4
Capistrano Valley at Damien (DAMIEN)
Glendora at Murrieta Mesa (MURRIETA MESA)
Division 6
San Marino at Bishop Diego – (BISHOP DIEGO)
Saugus at St. Paul, 7:30 p.m. – (STPAUL)
Division 7
Burbank at South Hills –(SOUTH HILLS)
El Modena at Diamond Ranch — (DIAMOND RANCH)
Division 10
Apple Valley at Montebello — (APPLE VALLEY)
Division 11
Katella at Arcadia — (ARCADIA)
Arroyo at Rancho Mirage — (ARROYO)
Division 12
Schurr at Santa Maria — (SCHURR)
Rancho Christian at South El Monte (RANCHO CHRISTIAN)
Division 13
Rio Hondo Prep at Orange — (RIO HONDO PREP)
Nogales at Silver Valley — (NOGALES)

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Charter Oak, St. Francis win; San Dimas, La Habra lose in OT; Amat rally falls short

Jermaine Braddock has big night for Charter Oak: If Charter Oak is going to make a serious run in the CIF Southern Section Division 3 playoffs, Jermaine Braddock is going to be a big reason why.
The do-everything receiver/safety being courted by Arizona, San Jose State, New Mexico, Colorado State and others scored every way imaginable to lead the top-seed Chargers to a 55-14 victory over Crespi in the first round on Friday.

St. Francis football cuts off La Serna at pass: St. Francis High football coach Jim Bonds said earlier in the week he expected a much different La Serna team than the one his team easily defeated in September.
La Serna proved him right, almost too right in fact in this rematch, as it took an interception by Kevin Armstead with 44 seconds left to preserve a 31-27 win for St. Francis in the first round of the CIF-SS Division 3 playoffs on Friday night.

Bishop Amat’s rally falls short: The Bishop Amat football team took advantage of almost every opportunity on Friday in the first round of the CIF Southern Section Division 1 playoffs, but ultimately fell to defending champion and third seed St. John Bosco, 35-21, at El Camino College.
“We came here to play hard and that’s what we did, it just wasn’t enough,” Amat coach Steve Hagerty said. “Momentum is overrated. We just didn’t execute when we needed to.”

Edison emerges victorious after thrilling OT battle with La Habra: La Habra went for the win.
Edison got the win.
La Habra, trailing by one point after a touchdown in overtime, Skyler Taylor took the handoff and tried to twist his way into the end zone. A group of Edison Chargers, led by Hunter Griggs and Brandon Moradian, pulled Taylor down a foot-and-a-half short of the goal line and Edison won 28-27 in a CIF-Southern Section Division 2 first-round playoff game at La Habra High.

Bryce Wooldridge passes Glendora football into second round: Prior to Friday night’s CIF Southern Section first-round playoff game between Corona Santiago and Glendora, many felt the Tartans needed to run the ball to have any chance of winning.
Glendora quarterback Bryce Wooldridge had other ideas.
The senior completed 16 of 19 passes for 365 yards and two touchdowns to lead Glendora to a 38-23 win. The victory advances Glendora (8-3) to the quarterfinals of the Division 4 playoffs against Murrieta Mesa.

San Dimas’ game winner comes up short: San Dimas came up inches short of advancing in the CIF-Southern Section Division 8 football playoffs Friday night.
The Saints went for a two-point conversion in the first overtime, but Dylan Ware didn’t cross the goal line, as Kaiser won 35-34.
“You know we’ve been working since January and wanted to go all the way,” Ware said. “We just wanted to go for the win and I know I put the ball into the end zone.”

Late Gahr touchdown ends Santa Fe football season: Everyone in attendance at Friday night’s CIF Southern Section Division 10 first-round football playoff game between Santa Fe and Gahr knew who would be getting the ball.
With the Gladiators facing a fourth-and-3 at the Chiefs’ 3-yard line with less than 30 seconds to play in the game, there wasn’t any doubt about who Gahr would go to with its season on the line.

Cabot paces San Marino football to playoff win over Summit: Defensive stops were rare in Friday night’s CIF-SS Division 6 first-round playoff game between Summit and host San Marino.
Quarterback Blake Cabot and running back Beau Hobbie made enough plays to give their defense a break, leading the way as the fifth-seeded Titans topped the Skyhawks 62-49.

Northview falls short at Millikan: David Radford spoke to the Millikan football team before its game on Friday night about how his father – legendary former Rams coach Dave Radford, who passed away two weeks ago – cared more about the character of his team than the result of the game.
Millikan continued to make history as sophomore quarterback Qeanu Campbell-Caldwell threw five touchdown passes and the Rams dominated Northview, 48-23, in the first round of the CIF Southern Section Division 8 playoffs.

FRIDAY’S LOCAL PLAYOFF RESULTS
DIVISION 1

St. John Bosco 35, Bishop Amat 21
DIVISION 2
Edison 28, La Habra 27 (OT)
Heritage 55, La Mirada 21
DIVISION 3
Charter Oak 55, Crespi 14
St. Francis 21, La Serna 27
DIVISION 4
Damien 45, Paso Robles 28
Glendora 38, Corona Santiago 23
DIVISION 5
Moorpark 42, Los Altos 0
DIVISION 6
San Marino 62, Summit 49
St. Paul 48, West Torrance 14
DIVISION 7
South Hills 42, Oxnard Pacifica 21
Don Lugo 26, Pomona 0
Yorba Linda 44, Monrovia 21
St. Margaret’s 31, Ayala 17
Diamond Ranch 20, Palmdale 17
DIVISION 8
Kaiser 35, San Dimas 34, OT
Millikan 55, Northview 23
DIVISION 9
Aquinas 44, Maranatha 3
DIVISION 10
Montebello 28, Pasadena Poly 24
Gahr 31, Santa Fe 28
DIVISION 11
Covina 21, Victor Valley 7
Arcadia 21, Hillcrest 20
Arroyo 35, Lakeside 6
DIVISION 12
Schurr 49, Santa Ana Valley 14
South El Monte 50, El Dorado 7
Santa Ana 46, Bell Gardens 20
DIVISION 13
Santa Clara 35, Workman 7
Rio Hondo Prep 42, Azusa 22
Orange 28, Cantwell-Sacred Heart 26

CIF Southern Section Playoffs
Football
All games start at 7 p.m., unless noted
Thursday’s Quarterfinals
Division 11

Westminster at Covina
Friday’s Quarterfinals
Division 3

Charter Oak at Westlake
St. Francis at Citrus Hill
Division 4
Capistrano Valley at Damien
Glendora at Murrieta Mesa
Division 6
San Marino at Bishop Diego
Saugus at St. Paul, 7:30 p.m.
Division 7
Burbank at South Hills
El Modena at Diamond Ranch
Division 10
Apple Valley at Montebello
Division 11
Katella at Arcadia
Arroyo at Rancho Mirage
Division 12
Schurr at Santa Maria
Rancho Christian at South El Monte
Division 13
Rio Hondo Prep at Orange
Nogales at Silver Valley

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St. Paul, La Salle girls volleyball teams chase CIF volleyball championships on Saturday

Girls Volleyball
Saturday’s Championships
At Cerritos College
Division 3

La Salle (25-5) vs. Sage Hill (31-7), 9 a.m.
Division 5
St. Paul (25-10) vs. Sonora (28-3), 4:30 p.m.

St. Paul, Sonora battle for title: The St. Paul High girls volleyball team called its shot back in September.With the team coming off a disappointing 2016 season, one in which the Swordsmen were denied a postseason berth, seniors Hannah Tostado and Alex Diaz guaranteed that they would win the CIF Southern Section Division 5 championship.
While it might have been a bold prediction back then, the team has one of the most stacked rosters in the Division 5 bracket and a core hungry for a title.

La Salle looking for third title since 2011: After the La Salle girls volleyball team traveled to deep Orange County on Wednesday night to squeeze out a five-set thriller over Sage Hill to advance to its fourth CIF Southern Section championship match since 2011, it learned the next morning it would have to set its alarm clocks for Saturday’s championship at Cerritos College.
Top-seeded La Salle (25-5) will take on No. 2 seed Sierra Canyon (31-7) in the CIF-SS Division 3 title match at 9 a.m., a time normally reserved for smaller schools in higher divisions.

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Nogales, South Hills football advance to next round

Nogales rolls past LP: The drought-busting Nogales football team did it again, and it barely broke a sweat.
Last week, Nogales ended 26 years of frustration with a victory over Azusa to win its first league title since 1991, and Thursday it ended another drought in the first round of the CIF-Southern Section Division 13 playoffs.
Nogales’ Francisco Ibarra III scored the first four times he carried the ball and the Nobles went on to rout La Puente 42-0 to win its first playoff game since beating Santa Barbara in 1995.

South Hills pulls away in second half: Top-seeded South Hills struggled early but pulled away in the second half to beat Pacifica of Oxnard 42-21 in a CIF Southern Section Division 7 first-round playoff game Thursday night.It is the first time since 2009 that the Huskies have advanced past the first round.
The Huskies (10-1) will play the winner of Friday night’s game between Burbank and Tustin next week at a site to be determined.

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