Saturday Morning Quarterback: Rowland, South Hills win easy; Bishop Amat crushes rival St. Paul

Friday’s results
Rowland 27, Walnut 7 — The Raiders’ remain perfect but it was costly. Quarterback Michael Ball left the field in an ambulance, a possible injury to his collarbone. The Raiders’ D was mighty impressive again.
South Hills 27, West Covina 6 — This wasn’t even as close as the score indicated. South Hills rushed for 277 team yards with Geoffrey Vaughns going for 167 yards and two TDs. The Bulldogs only had two first downs midway through the fourth.
Bishop Amat 38, St. Paul 6 — We know this isn’t one of the better St. Paul teams but still, the Lancers put them away like a Pac-5 power should.
Arroyo 14, Rosemead 12 — The Panthers didn’t want to give up the Mission Valley league title without a fight, and that’s what they gave the Knights, who won’t lose an MVL game the rest of the way.
Baldwin Park 28, Covina 7 — The Braves needed a statement win, and beating the Colts as thoroughly as they did makes a statement.
La Puente 32, Workman 7 — Did I just type that? A week after the Warriors get hammered by Azusa, they do the hammering against a crosstown rival.
Charter Oak 31, Bonita 0 — Just what you expected from the defending champs, who for all intents and purposes can wrap up league next week against Diamond Ranch.
Chino Hills 38, Damien 7 — This was a step-back bigtime. The Spartans should have been able to make a better game of this with two weeks at home to prepare. Guess what, Glendora’s next.
Glendora 40, Diamond Bar 19 — The Tartans rolled, and now can get ready to face Damien at Citrus College on Friday.
Azusa 34, Sierra Vista 13 — Not a bad showing for the Dons, but once again, the Aztecs just too much.
Los Altos 54, Wilson 17 — It was only 14-10 Los Altos at half, but the Conqs opened it up in the second half. The game ended with an ugly scene as fans piled onto the field.
Gladstone 40, Duarte 14 — The Happy Rockers roll over the punchless Falcons.
Gabrielino 21, El Monte 14 — Somebody had to win, right?
South El Monte 35, Mountain View 6 — Did we wee the Eagles have a terrible non-league a few years back then rally to win league? Just saying.

For quarter-by-quarter updates of tonight’s games, click thread

The San Antonio League begins in exciting fashion this evening with not just two undefeated teams, but with the top two ranked teams in the Southeast Division squaring off.

Second-ranked Walnut (5-0) hosts top-ranked Rowland (5-0) at 7 p.m., while perennial favorites West Covina (3-3) and fourth-ranked South Hills (3-2) meet at Covina District Field.

“Every one of these games are super critical,” O’Shields said.

“What we have done to this point is great, but this is when it all counts.”

In terms of numbers, the Raiders have been the most dominant team in the Valley in averaging almost 40 points while limiting opponents to just 14 a game for an average winning margin of just over 25 points.

It might not have come against the toughest opponents, but that’s domination as far as O’Shields is concerned.

“It’s kind of shocking,” O’Shields said. “You hear they lost a lot of players, but they haven’t skipped a beat. What they’re doing on both sides of the ball is extremely impressive.”

Raiders coach Craig Snyder has been cautiously optimistic all along and knows a setback would disrupt the good feelings and confidence they’ve built to this point.

“I don’t know if our ranking is justified,” Snyder said. “All it does is put a bull’s-eye on your chest. It doesn’t get you in the playoffs.

“At the same time, we don’t have to prove anything to anyone but ourselves. We’re playing well, but so is everyone else.”

Both teams also realize the loser likely will have to beat West Covina or South Hills to reach the playoffs. The Bulldogs and Huskies have won or shared every San Antonio League title this decade.

“It’s a shame that one of us have to miss the playoffs, but that’s how it is,” Snyder said. “That’s why you don’t want to start 0-1 in this league.”

Trying to figure a way to contain mobile quarterback Michael Ball is O’Shields’ biggest concern.

As a sophomore, Ball led the Raiders to the Southeast semifinals and has picked up where he left off in averaging more than 200 all-purpose yards with seven touchdown passes and four rushing touchdowns.

“He’s elusive,” O’Shields said of Ball. “He’s so quick he hasn’t been hit many times. He can drop back and you feel like you’ve got great coverage, then he takes off and runs. Those guys are hard to defend.”

The Mustangs’ offense is just as difficult to prepare for.

Quarterback Austin Cooper is completing passes at a 60 percent clip and averaging 188 yards passing while running backs Milan King and Leonard Rhodes combine to average nearly 100 yards on the ground.

Rhodes also has been quite a threat at wideout with a team-leading 20 receptions for 325 yards and four touchdowns.

“They have weapons all over the place,” Snyder said.

“That Rhodes is 6-foot-4 and a ton to bring down. He’s scary if he catches the ball in open space.

“They’re for real, there is no doubt about that.”

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