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LA North: Five things from the weekend

1. Alemany coach Dean Herrington was a bit critical of his team after a 31-14 win over Loyola. His offense turned the ball over three times and came out a little flat to start the second half. Fortunately for Alemany, Loyola wasn’t able to capitalize on the turnovers. But Loyola running back Jared Baker broke off the biggest play of the game, scoring on an 88-yard run on the second play of the second half. Herrington did say after the game that he is happy with the way his defense is playing. Alemany gave Loyola a chance to get back in the game late in the fourth quarter when Kyron Defour fumbled at midfield. Alemany defensive linemen Akeem Gonzales and Sergio Figuerora came up with big plays on the ensuing drive. They each sacked Loyola quarterback Nick Cotton and sent Loyola back to its own 40 yard line. On Loyola’s last play of the game, Alemany chased Cotton out of the end zone for a safety. The defense for undefeated Alemany turned it up when it mattered against Loyola.

2. Valencia has shown a couple chinks in its armor against its past two Foothill League opponents. In the game against Hart, Valencia was trailing 14-3 at halftime. Running back Steven Manfro scored on two long touchdown runs in the fourth quarter and the Valencia defense held Hart to three points in the second half. Against Canyon two weeks ago, Valencia trailed three times in the first half before finally pulling away in the fourth quarter. The lapses have given Saugus some confidence, or perhaps delusions of grandeur. Saugus has yet to play Valencia and at 2-1 in league play, they have a shot at winning the Foothill League championship. It would take an upset win over Valencia when the two teams meet on Nov. 11. Saugus has to play West Ranch before its game with Valencia. There’s no chance Saugus is looking past West Ranch. No chance.

3. It’s safe to say Friday night’s game against Gardena Serra is the biggest game of the year for the Chaminade football team. It might be the biggest game of the century (mind you it’s only 10 years into the 21st century) for Chaminade. Serra is the reigning CIF Division III state champions and the top-ranked team in the Southern Section Southwest Division. Both teams are undefeated, but Serra has the top recruits and the winning tradition. Chaminade is loaded with underclassmen who have not played in a game of this magnitude before. Chaminade running back Terrell Newby is having a great year. He is coming off a three-touchdown game against Cathedral. The Chaminade defense gave up only six points in a 30-6 win over Catherdral. Let’s see if that’s enough to challenge Serra.

4. The Westlake football team had an easy time against Agoura in a 49-13 win. The St. Bonaventure football team had an easier time against Calabasas, 57-0. Westlake and St. Bonaventure meet on Friday night in a game that should decide the Marmonte League championship. Westlake is riding a 22-game winning streak. St. Bonaventure has shut out its past two Marmonte League opponents. The only blemish on St. Bonaventure’s record is a 33-32 overtime loss to Oaks Christian on Sept. 17. Westlake quarterback Nick Isham threw three touchdown passes and scored a rushing touchdown against Agoura. Isham threw only nine passes in the game and half of his completions went for touchdowns. St. Bonaventure running back Shaun Wick scored two touchdowns against Calabasas. He rushed four times for 37 yards.

5. The Saugus girls volleyball team won the gold division championship at the Crescenta Valley tournament for the second year in a row. The Saugus girls beat Arroyo Grande, 20-25, 25-16, 15-6, in the championship match. Saugus avenged a five-game loss to Arroyo Grande in the first round of last year’s CIF Southern Section Division I-A playoffs. Sarah Blomgren had a team-high 11 kills for Saugus in the championship match. Cory Nua earned tournament MVP honors. Jaclyn Clark and Ashley Guthrie were selected to the all-tournament team.