ESPNLA prep football Top 25: Week 4

September, 26, 2011
9/26/11
4:43
PM PT
In arguably the biggest week of the season in terms of matchups, there were major shifts in the latest ESPN Los Angeles prep football Top 25 rankings, including a couple of newcomers and a few who dropped out. In all, there were six matchups involving top 25 teams and seven teams from the list who lost. Here are our rankings heading into Week 4:

1. Servite (4-0)
All the Friars do is keep winning, making it 30 in a row over teams from the Southland, including a victory last week over the last team from this region to hand them a loss -- Edison in 2009. Last week: beat Edison, 27-14. Next: at Bishop Gorman, Fri., 7 p.m.

2. Santa Margarita (4-0)
Junior QB Johnny Stanton shows his value with his arm and his legs by surpassing 100 yards in both passing and rushing, including three TDs on the ground in a rout of a good Carson team. Last week: beat Carson, 39-21. Next: vs. Los Alamitos at Veterans Stadium, Thu., 7:30 p.m.

3. Mission Viejo (3-1)
Prep football Twitter wars? Well, not exactly, but the Diablos responded to Snoop Dogg's disparaging tweets during the week in the best way any team can, by being able to point to the scoreboard.
Last week: beat Long Beach Poly, 17-12. Next: at Carson, Fri., 7:30 p.m.

4. Crespi (4-0)
The Celts take advantage of all the week's power matchups by doing what they're supposed to do: overpower an overmatched opponent to jump up three spots in the rankings. Last week: beat Palisades, 40-0. Next: vs. Vista Murrieta, Fri., 7 p.m.

5. Oaks Christian (2-1)
The night the lights went out in ... Westlake Village? The Lions take the early lead in the Marmonte League race after a contentious victory over the league's other private school power. Last week: beat St. Bonaventure, 36-24. Next: vs. Calabasas, Fri., 7 p.m.

6. St. Bonaventure (2-1)
The Seraphs had all the momentum when a power outage at Oaks Christian stalled the game in the fourth quarter for nearly 25 minutes. In the end, Bonny dug too deep a hole. Last week: lost to Oaks Christian, 36-24. Next: vs. Simi Valley at Ventura HS, Fri., 7 p.m.

7. Corona Centennial (2-1)
We know on the surface it seems unfair for the Huskies to have dropped a spot after a one-sided win, but we couldn't in good conscience rank them ahead of a team -- St. Bonaventure -- they already had lost to. At least not yet. Last week: beat Chaparral, 49-14. Next: vs. Riverside Poly at Riverside Ramona HS, Thu., 7 p.m.

8. Long Beach Poly (3-1)
If it wasn't clear already, the defense is going to keep the Jackrabbits in every game this season. But the offense will need to catch up if a sustained postseason run is in order. Last week: lost to Mission Viejo, 17-12. Next: at Compton, Fri., 7 p.m.

9. Alemany (3-1)
So was the loss to J.W. North an aberration? The Warriors answer in a most definitive way with an impressive display against a strong Chaminade team behind Steven Mitchell's two touchdown catches.
Last week: beat Chaminade, 38-14. Next: vs. Dorsey, Fri., 7 p.m.

10. Bishop Amat (3-1)
It was the Jalen Moore show for the second week in a row. A week after rushing for 303 yards, the senior gets 191 and two touchdowns to lift the Lancers to a big second half. Last week: beat Damien, 28-7. Next: vs. Cathedral, Fri., 7 p.m.

11. Westlake (3-0)
It might be just a vague feeling, but the Warriors seem to be flying way under the radar, yet they continue to win and make it clear the Marmonte League title race will involve more than two teams. Last week: beat Thousand Oaks, 38-6. Next: at Royal, Fri., 7 p.m.

12. Orange Lutheran (4-0)
The Lancers have us believing after an overtime victory against a team that gave No. 1 Servite its toughest game of the season so far. Definitely a character-building win for OLu. Last week: beat La Habra, 30-24 (OT). Next vs. Redondo at Saddleback College, Fri., 7:30 p.m.

13. Rancho Cucamonga (4-0)
The Cougars, after allowing only six points in three games, give up 13 to a quality Charter Oak team and keep their perfect record in tact. QB Dimitri Morales has nearly 200 yards in total offense. Last week: beat Charter Oak, 21-13. Next: vs. Redlands at Los Osos HS, Fri., 7 p.m.

14. San Clemente (4-0)
Not only did the Tritons remain unbeaten and move up three spots in the rankings, they handed a very good Mater Dei team its third straight loss to start the season, hardly an easy feat. Last week: beat Mater Dei, 28-21 (OT). Next: vs. Newport Harbor, Fri., 7 p.m.

15. Loyola (4-0)
OK, we admit it. We were wrong about the Cubs. We were definitely swayed by last year's 3-7 record, but now we know better. A strong defense, especially the secondary, makes a difference. Last week: beat St. John Bosco, 28-14. Next: at Upland, Fri., 7 p.m.

16. Lakewood (3-1)
The Lancers are doing exactly what they need to as quarterback Brock Dale becomes more comfortable with each passing week as Moore League play begins. Last week: beat Leuzinger, 55-0. Next: at Long Beach Wilson, Fri., 7 p.m.

17. Vista Murrieta (3-0)
The Broncos are undefeated but have hardly dominated their opponents, with two of three victories having come by margins of nine points or fewer. This is the week where the pretender/contender label could play into the equation. Last week: beat Los Osos, 30-21. Next: at Crespi, Fri., 7 p.m.

18. St. John Bosco (3-1)
The Braves were humbled by a tough Loyola team, but they get a chance to gain back some respect before play in the ridiculously tough Trinity League begins. Last week: lost to Loyola, 28-14. Next: vs. La Habra, Thu., 7:30 p.m.

19. Canyon Country Canyon (3-0)
It isn't often a team can allow a state record for receptions to be broken against its defense and still come away with a 24-point win, but that's exactly what the Cowboys did to remain perfect. Last week: beat Camarillo, 52-28. Next: vs. Beverly Hills, Fri., 7:30 p.m.

20. Sherman Oaks Notre Dame (4-0)
The Knights followed up a shutout of City Section power Taft with another impressive victory over another City team, but their real tests won't come until the Serra League schedule arrives. Last week: beat Birmingham, 34-12. Next: vs. Golden Valley, Fri., 7 p.m.

21. Upland (4-0)
Coach Tim Salter decides to open up the offense and the result is the most impressive victory of the season for the Highlanders, who avenged a loss to a tough Norco team from last season. Last week: beat Norco, 54-27. Next: vs. Loyola, Fri., 7 p.m.

22. Carson (1-2)
Mater Dei, Long Beach Poly, Santa Margarita and now Mission Viejo looms. The Colts have to be wondering if this brutal schedule will eventually pay off. If injuries don't become a factor, we think it will. Last week: lost to Santa Margarita, 39-21. Next: vs. Mission Viejo, Fri., 7:30 p.m.

23. Redlands East Valley (3-0)
Coach Kurt Bruich is looking for someone beyond QB Austin Decoud to step up on offense. If that happens any time soon, the Wildcats could have something really special on their hands. Last week: beat Dorsey, 14-12. Next: at Chino Hills, Fri., 7 p.m.

24. Chaminade (2-1)
The Eagles figure to fall from their perch as the No. 1 team in the CIF-SS Western Division poll after a loss to Alemany, but it would be foolish to count them out as contenders. Last week: lost to Alemany, 38-14. Next: at Mira Costa, Fri., 7 p.m.

25. Los Alamitos (4-0)
The Griffins have victories over Norwalk, Mayfair, West Adams and L.A. University, not exactly a Murderer's Row of scheduling, but success this week could quell all that talk. Last week: beat L.A. University, 56-0. Next: vs. Santa Margarita at Veterans Stadium, Thu., 7 p.m.

Dropped out:Mater Dei, Norco.

Newcomers:Loyola, Los Alamitos.

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