Los Angeles Preps: Chris Davis

L.A. North: The Top 10

December, 4, 2011
The championship game of the Southern Section Northern Division playoffs is the same as it ever was. Oaks Christian, the reigning champion, will play Westlake, the No. 1-ranked team in the state and by ESPN Los Angeles.

The Westlake football team pounded poor Thousand Oaks in the semifinals of the Northern Division playoffs.

Oaks Christian had to rally in the second half to knock out St. Bonaventure in the other Northern Division semifinal setting up a rematch of last year’s championship game. It will be the fourth time in the past two seasons that Westlake and Oaks Christian have played.

Westlake is 2-1 in the previous three meetings. Oaks Christian’s only win came in last year’s Northern Division championship game, 29-28.

Here’s a look at this week’s L.A. North top 10:
  1. (1) Westlake (13-0) – The Warriors will be well-rested for their championship matchup against Oaks Christian. Quarterback Justin Moore threw for 98 yards and two touchdowns in one half of work. Running back Dashon Hunt gained 75 yards in eight carries and scored on a 42-yard punt return, all in the first half. Westlake will be making its third Northern Division championship game appearance in a row. The Warriors won the title in 2009 and lost to Oaks Christian last year.
  2. (2) Oaks Christian (11-2) – The reigning Northern Division champions are making their ninth straight CIF championship game appearance. The Lions have won seven CIF championships, but last year’s was their first in the Northern Division. Brandon Dawkins was about as efficient as a quarterback can be in the semifinal game against St. Bonaventure. He completed 25 of 29 passes for 195 yards and a touchdown. Oaks Christian coach Bill Redell said he was surprised he didn’t go 29-for-29. One area of concern might be that the longest pass of the night came on a halfback option. Chris Davis completed a 37-yard pass to Jordan Payton to set up a touchdown run by Dawkins in the third quarter.
  3. (3) St. Bonaventure (10-3) – The Seraphs came up a game short of the Northern Division championship again. Injuries plagued St. Bonaventure before and during its 27-24 loss to Oaks Christian. Starting quarterback Marc Evans sat out because of an injured shoulder. Receiver and kick returner Montre Lee injured his elbow during a key drive in the fourth quarter and was taken off the field in an ambulance. Not to make excuses, but a healthier St. Bonaventure team might have been able to hold a 10-point lead against Oaks Christian. At least the lights stayed on at the stadium.
  4. (4) Chaminade (10-3) – For the second year in a row, Chaminade ended its playoff run in the Western Division semifinals. Arroyo Grande beat Chaminade, 45-36. Running back Terrell Newby ended the season with 188 yards against Arroyo Grande and set the school record for rushing. He gained 2,073 yards in his junior season, easily breaking the record of 1,741 yards set by Tim Lavin in 1987. Newby scored 35 touchdowns this season and has 57 TDs in his career with one year to go.
  5. (5) Sierra Canyon (13-0) – Running backs Danny Jordan and Xavier Menifeld combined for 282 yards rushing – each had 141 yards -- and kicker Noah Zgrablich made three field goals in their team’s 42-16 win over Bishop Diego in the East Valley Division semifinal. The top-seeded Trailblazers get a rematch against Paraclete, the reigning East Valley Division champion, in the title game on Saturday night.

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No. 7 Oaks Chr. 27, No. 8 St. Bona. 24

December, 3, 2011

VENTURA – Oaks Christian quarterback Brandon Dawkins said his team was flustered, a little surprised and came out cocky against St. Bonaventure in the semifinals of the CIF Southern Section Northern Division playoffs on Friday night.

The Seraphs jumped out to a 10-point lead in the first half, but Oaks Christian scored two touchdowns in the first six minutes of the third quarter and eliminated St. Bonaventure from the playoffs, 27-24, at Ventura High School.

Dawkins passed for 195 yards and a touchdown. He rushed for 74 yards and scored two more on the ground. Dawkins peppered St. Bonaventure with an array of screens and quick-outs to chew up the clock and engineered two long drives that produced key touchdowns against a stingy St. Bonaventure defense.

Oaks Christian coach Bill Redell agreed with Dawkins that his team didn’t play well in the first half of the game.

“I don’t have an answer for it,” Redell said. “We have been playing well in the playoffs. We didn’t play like we should have.”

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L.A. North: Pick six games of the week

December, 1, 2011
No. 7 Oaks Christian (10-2) vs. No. 8 St. Bonaventure (10-2) at Ventura High School, Friday (7 p.m.) – Oaks Christian is on the road for its Northern Division semifinal game against St. Bonaventure and coach Bill Redell probably prefers it that way. The two teams met in the second week of Marmonte League play at Oaks Christian and the game was delayed nearly 30 minutes when the lights went out at the football stadium in the middle of a punt in the second half. Redell said if his team faced St. Bonaventure again in the playoffs, he would like to play the game during the day and anywhere but at Oaks Christian. Even though Oaks Christian won by 12 points, the game was much closer than that. St. Bonaventure cut Oaks Christian’s lead to three points, 27-24, in the fourth quarter before the lights went out. Oaks Christian scored the last nine points of the game on a safety and a 59-yard touchdown pass from Brandon Dawkins to Chris Davis. Oaks Christian had 400 yards of total offense to St. Bonaventure’s 401. Dawkins passed for 177 yards. St. Bonaventure quarterback Marc Evans had 156 yards passing. Oaks Christian gained 223 yards on the ground to St. Bonaventure’s 245. Oaks Christian running back Ishmael Adams had a big game with two rushing touchdowns and 77 yards on 11 carries.

No. 18 Chaminade (10-2) vs. No. 19 Arroyo Grande (11-1), Friday (7 p.m.) – Arroyo Grande eliminated Chaminade, 52-19, in the semifinals of the Western Division playoffs last year. Chaminade coach Ed Croson is not looking forward to a second long road trip in a row in the playoffs. His Eagles had to rally in the fourth quarter to beat San Luis Obispo in the quarterfinals. Arroyo Grande, on the other hand, is home for the third week in a row in the playoffs. Arroyo Grande is coming off a 49-28 win over St. Francis in the quarterfinals, but the game was much closer than the final score indicated. Arroyo Grande scored 25 points in the fourth quarter to turn a four-point deficit into a 21-point blowout. Two of the touchdowns Arroyo Grande scored were of the defensive variety. Garrett Owens intercepted a pass and returned it 32 yards for a touchdown. Seth Jacobs returned a fumble 55 yards for another touchdown. Chaminade running back Terrell Newby is closing in on 2,000 yards rushing for the season. He has 1,885 yards and 30 touchdowns and is coming off a 282-yard, three-touchdown performance against San Luis Obispo.

Canoga Park (8-4) vs. South East (11-1), Friday (7 p.m.) – Canoga Park, the fifth-seeded team in the City Section Division II playoffs, needed double overtime to eliminate Bell in the quarterfinals. Running back Khyree Morgan leads Canoga Park with 1,179 yards and 14 touchdowns, but was held to 39 yards in 16 carries against Bell. South East, the top-seeded team in the Division II playoffs, blew out Fremont, 42-19, in the quarterfinals. Running back Robert Lewis gained 157 yards and scored two touchdowns for South East against Fremont.

Granada Hills (7-5) vs. Marshall of Los Angeles (10-2), Friday (7 p.m.) – Granada Hills turned it on in the second half against Van Nuys in the quarterfinals of the City Section Division II playoffs. The Highlanders outscored Van Nuys 20-0 en route to a 44-22 win. Granada Hills had 290 rushing yards against Van Nuys. Brian Sanchez was the leading rusher with 181 yards and three touchdowns. Marshall was actually down 10-6 in the first quarter against Lincoln in its quarterfinal game before rattling off 43 unanswered points and winning 49-10. Marshall quarterback Anthony Benitez threw for 313 yards and five touchdowns, two to Jonathan Mina. He caught five passes for 113 yards.

Bishop Diego (11-1) vs. Sierra Canyon (12-0) at Granada Hills High School, Friday (7 p.m.) – Sierra Canyon eliminated Bishop Diego, 48-17, in the first round of the East Valley Division playoffs last year. They meet again in the East Valley Division semifinals. No. 1 seeded Sierra Canyon is coming off a 38-0 shutout over Ontario Christian. Bishop Diego has won 11 games in a row, including 21-14 over Twentynine Palms in the East Valley Division quarterfinals.

Paraclete (10-2) vs. Rim of the World (7-5), Friday (7 p.m.) – Fortune is smiling on Rim of the World in the East Valley Division playoffs. The Fighting Scots knocked third-seeded St. Margaret’s out of the playoffs, 23-13, in the quarterfinals. They are home for their semifinal game against Paraclete, the reigning East Valley Division champion. Rim of the World running back Jacob Taylor is coming off a monster game. He rushed for 264 yards on 47 carries and scored three touchdowns. The Spirits eliminated Aquinas, 42-7, in the quarterfinals last week. Paraclete running back Ryan Davis scored two touchdowns and rushed for 73 yards. James Holland returned the opening kickoff 85 yards for a touchdown and Joshua Adams returned a fumble for a touchdown in the fourth quarter.

L.A. North: The Top 10

October, 30, 2011
Three teams in the L.A. North top 10 stayed undefeated. The Westlake football team made quick work of Newbury Park. Ventura and Sierra Canyon also rolled to easy victories to stay unbeaten.

Two teams in the L.A. North top 10 lost and it cost one of them a spot. Thousand Oaks was no match for St. Bonaventure. Just when it looked as if Valencia had things figured out, the Vikings lost to Foothill League rival Hart.

The Foothill League is a mess with four teams with 2-1 records and tied for first place. Valencia beat Canyon. Hart beat Valencia. Saugus beat Hart. Canyon clobbered Saugus to open league play.

Exit Valencia. Enter Highland, winners of three games in a row and tied for first place in the Golden League.
  1. (1) Westlake (8-0) – Quarterback Justin Moore threw three touchdown passes and rushed for a touchdown in a 49-3 win over Newbury Park. Any chance the Warriors look past Agoura in preparation for St. Bonaventure in two weeks? Don’t count on it.
  2. (2) Alemany (6-2) – Alemany finally won a close game, 30-28, over Serra League rival Crespi. And it was an important Serra League win. Alemany improved to 2-0 in league. Crespi dropped to 1-2. Alemany coach Dean Herrington said quarterback Devon Dunn had his best game of the season. He passed for a touchdown, ran in two more and continually made plays to keep his team in the game.
  3. (3) Chaminade (7-1) – The Eagles started slow, but came on strong in the end and beat St. Francis, 31-13. It was the second loss in a row for St. Francis, winner of its first six games. Chaminade has won five games in a row, including its first three Mission League games.
  4. (5) St. Bonaventure (7-1) – Running backs Shaun Wick and Zack Green combined for four touchdowns and 256 rushing yards in a 50-8 win over Thousand Oaks. Any chance St. Bonaventure looks past Calabasas in preparation for Westlake in two weeks? See Westlake above.
  5. (6) Oaks Christian (6-2) – The Lions easily disposed of Simi Valley, 38-7. The Oaks Christian defense forced and recovered four fumbles, returning one for a touchdown. Oaks Christian racked up 242 rushing yards led by Jordan Payton’s 80-yard reverse for a touchdown. Chris Davis led the Lions with 65 yards on six carries.

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Football: No. 8 Oaks Christian 36, No. 5 St. Bonaventure 24

September, 24, 2011

WESTLAKE VILLAGE -- The Oaks Christian football team has a pair of super sophomores who had breakout performances against a tough St. Bonaventure team on Friday night.

In more ways than one, quarterback Brandon Dawkins and receiver Chris Davis played lights out.

Dawkins and Davis each scored a touchdown in Oaks Christian’s 36-24 win over St. Bonaventure to help the Lions take early control of the race for the Marmonte League title. Dawkins gave the Lions a 13-3 lead in the second quarter with a 1-yard touchdown run.

Davis caught a 60-yard touchdown pass from Dawkins to put the game out of reach in the fourth quarter.

But the game wasn’t without drama. Oaks Christian (2-1), the No. 8 team in the ESPLNA prep football rankings, was ahead, 20-3, at halftime before St. Bonaventure mounted a second-half comeback. It was much like the game between the two teams last year when Oaks Christian had a 19-0 lead before St. Bonaventure rallied to tie the score and send the game into overtime.

St. Bonaventure (2-1), the No. 6 team in the ESPNLA rankings, scored two touchdowns in the fourth quarter to cut the Oaks Christian lead to three points, 27-24. After forcing Oaks Christian to punt with a little less than seven minutes to play in the game, the stadium lights went out.

While the ball was in the air after the punt, the lights in the stadium dimmed. The ball ended up on the St. Bonaventure 1-yard line. After a 15-minute delay to restore the lights, the game resumed. St. Bonaventure started its drive from its own 1-yard line.

When asked if he knew why the lights went out, Oaks Christian coach Bill Redell said, “I have no idea.”

After the game, St. Bonaventure coach Todd Therrien had only one thing to say, “No comment.”

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