St. Francis looks for quick start

Football: Golden Knights look to take down Chaminade, top dog in Western Division, on road Friday.

October 26, 2011|By Charles Rich,

A look at the latest CIF Southern Section Western Division poll shows that four Mission League football teams are ranked in the top 10. Among those included are Chaminade High at No. 1 and St. Francis at No. 6.

St. Francis Coach Jim Bonds is aware that the Eagles occupy the top spot, but he's looking for his players to block that out of their minds when they meet Chaminade in a league road contest at 7:30 p.m. Friday.

"They are ranked No. 1 in the division if you decide to pay attention," Bonds said. "We've decided to not pay attention and anything can happen."


St. Francis (6-1, 1-1 in league) will look to bounce back from a 44-30 league loss against Gardena, ranked No. 3 in the division, on Friday night. Chaminade improved to 6-1, 2-0 with a 55-0 league victory against Harvard-Westlake.

St. Francis and Chaminade have had their share of close games in recent seasons, with the last three being decided by seven points or less. Chaminade recorded a 29-26 win last season at St. Francis and St. Francis rallied for a 32-25 win at Chaminade in 2009 on a last-minute touchdown that was caught by wide receiver Travis Talianko.

Bonds said he expects another close game.

"They are very well-coached, athletic and physical," Bonds said. "They just have some good athletes and we know we'll have our work cut our for us.

"The point of emphasis for us will be to start faster. We put ourselves in some holes last week. We want to concentrate on playing our kind of football."

St. Francis and Serra were deadlocked at 7 midway through the second quarter before the Golden Knights surrendered 24 points in the final six minutes to trail, 31-7, at halftime. St. Francis pulled to within 38-30 late in the fourth quarter, but saw Serra score a late touchdown to close out the Golden Knights.

St. Francis quarterback Jared Lebowitz completed 19 of 36 passes for 274 yards and one interception against Serra. The Golden Knights received one rushing touchdown apiece from Lebowitz and Austin De Los Santos.

The Golden Knights also lost starting defensive lineman Jose Padilla to a season-ending knee injury sustained in the first half against Serra.

Chaminade enters Friday's tilt having won four games in a row. The Eagles have outscored their last four foes — Mira Costa, Sherman Oaks Notre Dame, St. Paul and Harvard-Westlake — by a margin of 151-51.

The Eagles will be led by quarterback Logan Scott and running back Terrell Newby, who had three touchdowns against Harvard-Westlake.

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