Monday, October 31, 2011
ESPNLA prep football Top 25: Week 9
By Blair Angulo
Twenty-one of last week's ranked teams won, making for minimal noise in our weekly top 25 rankings. Encino Crespi took the hardest fall -- from 18 to 25 -- following its loss to defending Serra League champion Alemany. The rankings heading into Week 9:
1. Servite (7-1) Timely defense and a relentless running attack helped the Friars come back from two deficits on Friday. Quarterback Cody Pittman praised his physical offensive line. Last week: Beat St. John Bosco, 35-27. Next: vs. Mater Dei at Angel Stadium, Friday.
2. Westlake (8-0) Running backs coach Ellis Green got a great birthday present from his group, led by tailback Zach Mumford. Quarterback Justin Moore continued his hot streak, passing for 151 yards and three touchdowns. Last week: Beat Newbury Park, 49-3. Next: vs. Agoura, Friday.
3. St. Bonaventure (7-1) The dynamic duo of Shaun Wick and Zack Green keeps getting it done for the Seraphs. The running backs combined for 256 yards and four touchdowns Friday, and Marc Evans was good through the air. Last week: Beat Thousand Oaks, 50-3. Next: at Calabasas, Friday.
4. Corona Centennial (7-1) Romello Goodman ran for 144 yards and two touchdowns and Hayden Gavett once again eclipsed the 200-yard passing mark. The improving defense allowed just two field goals. Last week: Beat Corona, 49-6. Next: vs. Roosevelt, Friday.
5. Long Beach Poly (7-1) The Jackrabbits earned their first shutout of the season, showing no signs of rust following a bye week. Nick Pope was impressive in place of quarterback the injured Chaiyse Hales (concussion). Last week: Beat Millikan, 54-0. Next: at Long Beach Wilson, Friday.
6. Santa Margarita (7-1) Tailback Ryan Wolpin rushed for 169 yards and scored four touchdowns, and the Eagles avoided a letdown before the two remaining league games. Last week: Beat JSerra, 42-14. Next: vs. St. John Bosco at Saddleback College, Friday.
7. Redlands East Valley (8-0) There were concerns hovering over the offense's productivity, but the Wildcats scored plenty Friday. The defense has not given up more than 14 points in any game this year. Last week: Beat Eisenhower, 34-14. Next: vs. Fontana at Citrus Valley High, Friday.
8. Mission Viejo (6-2) Buzzy Yokoyama, who had been sidelined because of a foot injury, returned to the lineup and scored two early touchdowns. The Diablos jumped out to a 23-0 lead at halftime. Last week: Beat San Clemente, 29-21. Next: vs. Tesoro, Friday.
9. Vista Murrieta (3-5) Having to forfeit five nonleague wins earlier in the week didn't appear to affect the Broncos' psyche when they took the field Friday. Junior running back Su'a Cravens rushed for three touchdowns. Last week: Beat Great Oak, 45-24. Next: vs. Murrieta Valley, Friday.
10. Upland (8-0) Talk about efficiency. The Highlanders scored on six of their first seven possessions Friday, blowing past a helpless Glendora team to set up a battle for Baseline League title. Last week: Beat Glendora, 49-3. Next: vs. Los Osos, Friday.
11. Oaks Christian (6-2) It was far from pretty, but the Lions made up for the sloppiness by playing well defensively. Their inefficiency in the red zone could be a concern, especially this late in the season. Last week: Beat Simi Valley, 38-7. Next: vs. Moorpark, Friday.
12. Alemany (6-2) It will be far from easy but the Warriors can successfully defend their Serra League title with a victory Friday. Devon Dunn-led Alemany seems to be hitting its stride at the right time. Last week: Beat Crespi, 30-28. Next: vs. Loyola, Friday.
13. Loyola (7-1) The defense came up big, helping the Cubs earn a crucial Serra League win on the road. They benefited from the return of Chaz Anderson, a versatile athlete who had been down because of a knee injury. Last week: Beat Bishop Amat, 14-3. Next: at Alemany, Friday.
14. San Clemente (8-1) The misery continued as the Tritons saw their losing streak to Mission Viejo extend to 11 games. They fell behind 23-0 before making the score more reasonable. Last week: Lost to Mission Viejo, 29-21. Next: vs. Tesoro, Nov. 10.
15. Rancho Cucamonga (7-1) The post-Upland letdown nearly happened. The Cougars, though, avoided the upset thanks to Chris Hawkins' clutch 93-yard kickoff return. Last week: Beat Etiwanda, 30-27. Next: vs. Glendora at Los Osos High, Friday.
16. St. John Bosco (6-2) The Braves played Servite close, proving that they're good and, perhaps most important, a serious threat if they reach the Pac-5 Division playoffs. Another tough test awaits. Last week: Lost to Servite, 35-27. Next: vs. Santa Margarita at Saddleback College, Friday.
17. Bishop Amat (6-3) The Lancers were doomed when quarterback Rio Ruiz left Friday's game because of a knee injury. He's as important a player as there is in the area and the offense couldn't get it rolling without him. Last week: Lost to Loyola, 14-3. Next: at S.O. Notre Dame, Friday.
18. Chaminade (7-1) Another week, another gritty home win for the Eagles, whose second-half surge had former Mission League contender St. Francis seeing blue. Terrell Newby stomped his way to 164 yards and three touchdowns. Last week: Beat St. Francis, 31-13. Next: at Cathedral, Friday.
19. Narbonne (6-2) Senior receiver Antoine Anderson has emerged as a key weapon for the Gauchos. He hauled in six passes for 160 yards and three touchdowns Friday. The league crown is now at stake. Last week: Beat Banning, 36-3. Next: at San Pedro, Friday.
20. San Pedro (8-0) Who could have predicted that the Pirates would go into Carson and shut out a solid offense. Yeah, they're undefeated, but now they're really on the radar in the City Section. Last week: Beat Carson, 21-0. Next: vs. Narbonne, Friday.
21. Dorsey (7-1) You expect a letdown sooner or later, but the Dons keep playing sound defense. They figure to get a test against Coliseum League rival Crenshaw. This one will be for all the marbles. Last week: Beat Fremont, 43-6. Next: at Crenshaw, Thursday.
22. Orange Lutheran (6-2) The Lancers couldn't afford another loss in the Trinity League and they responded, shutting out a strong Mater Dei attack. Conner Sullivan tossed three touchdown passes. Last week: Beat Mater Dei, 28-0. Next: vs. JSerra at Orange Coast College, Thursday.
23. Charter Oak (7-1) Naturally, it's difficult not to look toward next week's highly anticipated contest against defending Sierra League champion Chino Hills. The Chargers, though, have no cakewalk this week. Last week: Beat Claremont, 49-12. Next: vs. Damien, Friday.
24. Lakewood (6-3) The Lancers pulled away after a slow start Friday. They won't win the Moore League but they're doing all they can to gain steam heading into the Pac-5 playoffs. Last week: Beat Long Beach Jordan, 46-24. Next: vs. Millikan, Friday.
25. Crespi (6-3) Suddenly, things aren't so promising for the Celts. A second straight loss has them gasping for air in the unforgiving Serra League. Last week: Lost to Alemany, 30-28. Next: vs. Loyola at L.A. Valley College, Nov. 11.
Dropped out: None
Blair Angulo covers preps for ESPN Los Angeles. Follow him on Twitter. Make sure to follow @ESPNLAPreps for live in-game updates, final scores and news.