Every Monday, Scorebook Live California reporter Connor Morrissette writes a column highlighting the top performers and the most intriguing storylines in Southern California high school football. You can find his column archive here.
With the final week of the 2019 high school football season approaching, it looks like the upper Division playoff fields for both the Southern and LA City Sections are set, barring any upsets and/or a Narbonne playoff disqualification.
The Southern Section will use this formula for its Division 1 seeding:
1) CIF-SS Coaches Poll (Maximum 10 points)
2) Wins against division 1/2 teams (1 point each)
3) League Champion (1 point each)
Following Mater Dei’s win over St. John Bosco on Friday, the Monarchs are just about locked into the top spot, with St. John Bosco at two.
The latest Southern Section coaches poll has Corona Centennial at three and Mission Viejo at four. They’re followed by Servite, JSerra, Calabasas and Bishop Amat.
Assuming everyone wins with the exception of JSerra (they play Mater Dei), here are your Southern Section Division 1 playoff pairings. JSerra won’t fall despite their likely defeat because they’ve beaten both Calabasas and Bishop Amat this season.
- #8 Bishop Amat vs. #1 Mater Dei
- #5 Servite vs. #4 Mission Viejo (get your popcorn ready!)
- #6 JSerra vs. #3 Corona Centennial
- #7 Calabasas vs. #2 St. John Bosco
The City Section uses CalPreps rankings to determine their seeds, with the top eight teams making the Open Division. As of 5:30 p.m. on Monday evening, the top eight looks like this:
In my opinion, the only team that has a chance to be upset this week is San Pedro. The Pirates play on the road against Carson and should win, but playing at Carson is always tough. The Colts are 1-8 and San Pedro is 7-2, but this is a tougher game than the records indicate.
Banning will lose to Narbonne, but could stay where they’re at after the defeat due to having a much tougher strength of schedule than Palisades or Garfield.
Since there are some changes that could happen with the seedings, I won’t write-up the would-be matchups yet, but these are the eight teams that will make the cut. If something crazy happens, Reseda and Eagle Rock are ranked ninth and tenth respectively. It’s highly unlikely either team will make the field.
Let’s get into the weekly breakdown …
Mater Dei quarterback Bryce Young continued to make his case for the Division 1 Southern Section player of the year award in Friday’s 38-24 win over St. John Bosco. He completed 19 of 33 passes for 256 yards and three touchdowns in the victory. He also rushed for two more TDs. All three of Young’s touchdown passes went to senior receiver Kody Epps.
With 20 seconds left in the fourth quarter, Calabasas kicker Steven Rauso booted a game-winning 25-yard field goal to clinch the Coyotes’ 30-27 win over Oaks Christian. Friday’s win was Calabasas’ first ever victory over their Marmonte League rivals. If Calabasas beats St. Bonaventure this Friday they’ll win their league and clinch a Division 1 playoff berth.
In the Mater Dei game, Monarch senior defensive lineman Sefita Tupe Jr. throttled St. John Bosco running back Nathaniel Jones to force a turnover. Bosco had momentum on their side at that point and the lost fumble kept the score at 38-17.
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“Kody kind of sucks.”
That’s what a sarcastic Bryce Young had to say about receiver Kody Epps after the duo hooked up for three touchdowns in Friday’s win over St. John Bosco.
THIS WEEK’S TOP COMMITMENT
- Serrano defensive end/tight end Matt Lowe committed to Fresno State.
- Paramount safety Terrell Taylor committed to Army.
- Aquinas wide receiver Terence Fall committed to BYU.
TOP COLLEGE PERFORMANCE
Oaks Christian grad and Michigan true freshman Zach Charbonnet rushed for 74 yards and two touchdowns in the Wolverines’ 45-14 upset win over Notre Dame.
THIS WEEK’S BEST GAMES
Heritage vs. Rancho Verde
Cathedral vs. St Francis
Alemany vs. Notre Dame
Rancho Cucamonga vs. Upland
La Salle vs. Harvard-Westlake
Etiwanda vs. Chino Hills
Oaks Christian vs. Westlake
Chaminade vs. Serra
Loyola vs. Bishop Amat
Grace Brethren vs. Camarillo
Sierra Canyon vs. Paraclete
Murrieta Valley vs. Vista Murrieta
Temecula Valley vs. Murrieta Mesa
Tesoro vs. Mission Viejo
West Ranch vs. Valencia
Golden Valley vs. Hart
JW North vs. Riverside Poly
San Pedro vs. Carson
Garfield vs. Roosevelt
Palisades vs. Fairfax
THIS WEEK’S BOLD PREDICTION
West Ranch over Valencia