Friday Gameday Countdown: Monrovia wins the showdown, but San Marino shows it belongs in 21-16 setback…Muir and La Salle clinch


Another Friday Night Lights has come and gone, leaving one week left in the regular season. Friday night’s story was all about Monrovia and San Marino, and the Titans, who some some thought were no match for the ‘Cats, answered some critics, staying with Monrovia before losing, 21-16 in this battle of the top two teams in the area. The ‘Cats clinched at least a share of its sixth consecutive league title and will be the Rio Hondo’s No. 1 playoff representative. Elsewhere, Muir easily locked up the Pacific League with a 38-0 victory Arcadia. Next up for the Mustangs is the annual Turkey Tussle with rival Pasadena. La Salle clinched the Del Rey League and Maranatha inched closer to a playoff spot with an easy win over Valley Christian. Gabrielino dropped a 38-14 setback to El Monte, now must beat Arroyo to earn a playoff spot.

Monrovia 21, San Marino 16

MONROVIA – San Marino High School provided a challenge Friday but fell short of winning a title. Instead, that still goes to host Monrovia, which again reigned supreme in the Rio Hondo League, scoring a 21-16 victory over San Marino to clinch at least a share of its sixth consecutive league title. Blake Heyworth threw for 258 yards and two touchdowns and Darione Jones rushed for 85 and a touchdown for the Wildcats, who improved to 7-2 overall and 4-0 in the Rio Hondo League. San Marino, which had 161 passing yards and a touchdown from Matt Wofford, slipped to 8-1 and 3-1.
Monrovia coach Ryan Maddox: “(San Marino is) a very good football team. My hat’s off to them. Our kids played hard. It was a defensive game. We did what we needed to get the (win).”
San Marino coach Mike Hobbie: “We didn’t execute on offense the way we should have. They made it tough on us. They didn’t run the defense they had been running. Our guys had a tough time adjusting. But they have good players. It’s hard to stop them (the entire) game.”
Here is Friday’s recaps:
No. 1 Monrovia 21, No. 2 San Marino 16 — The ‘Cats are still ‘The One’ in the area and in the Rio Hondo League. But San Marino answered some critics by keeping it close. Expect both to players in the upcoming CIF-SS playoffs.
No. 4 La Salle 61, Cantwell 30 — The Lancers, getting 123 yards passing and two TDs from Austin Wallis, clinched the Del Rey League title. La Salle will likely beat Bosco Tech next week and finish 10-0 and be the No. 2 seed in the Nortwest Division.
No. 5 Muir 38, No. 8 Arcadia 0 — The Mustangs, getting 235 yards passing and four TDs from Joshua Muema-Washington, locked down the Pacific League title. The Apaches dropped to second and now must beat Crescenta Valley next week to clinch a playoff spot.
El Monte 38, No. 6 Gabrielino 14 — The Eagles are now in a must win situation, needing to beat Arroyo next week to lock down the Mission Valley League’s final playoff spot.
Chaminade 42, No. 7 St. Francis 14 — The Golden Knights, getting 200 yards passing from Jared Lebowitz and 139 yards rushing from Daniel Kawamura, saw their playoff hopes all but vanish. St. Francis, which hosts St. Paul next week, can still apply for an at-large bid.
Montebello 10, No. 9 Alhambra 9 — The Moors gave up a late TD and now must beat San Gabriel next week to clinch a playoff spot.
Sierra Vista 20, No. 10 Duarte 14 — The Falcons, getting a TD pass from Denzel Talifero to Samuel Edwards, were eliminated from receiving an automatic playoff spot. Duarte can still apply for an at-large bid.
Arroyo 21, Rosemead 10 — The Panthers were eliminated from receiving the league’s top three playoff spots. Rosemead can still apply for an at-large bid.
Maranatha 42, Valley Chr. 21 — Eli Snyder and Omar Younger combined for five touchdowns and the Minutemen stayed in the playoff hunt. Maranatha can get a postseason spot with a win over Village Christian next week at Occidental College.
Bell Gardens 26, San Gabriel 19 — The Matadors are still alive for a playoff spot, but it involves a win over Alhambra next week, a Montebello win over Schurr and then winning a coin flip.
Viewpoint 52, Marshall 12 — The Eagles conclude the season, finishing 3-7.
Burroughs 31, Pasadena 21 — All that matters now for the Bulldogs is the Turkey Tussle.
Temple City 44, La Canada 26 — Sophomore Nick Starling and junior Nick Kaneko rushed for 137 and 120 yards, respectively, and the Rams inched toward a playoff spot with the victory. Temple City plays for first against Monrovia next week. The Rams can still make the playoffs with a loss next week, but need San Marino to beat South Pasadena.
South Pasadena 41, Blair 0 — The Tigers stayed alive for a playoff spot, but the chances are slim since it involves beating San Marino next week.

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