St. Francis High football ready for Mission League opener at St. Paul

Football: All three local squads set to open league play, while St. Francis looks for 6-0 start against a winless St. Paul team.

October 09, 2013|By Andrew Shortall,
  • St. Francis High running Joe Mudie will look to stay sharp when Mission League play opens Friday at St. Paul.
St. Francis High running Joe Mudie will look to stay sharp… (Mike Mullen )

With the biggest win of its season in its back pocket, the 5-0 St. Francis High football team now has something to prove in the Mission League.

The Golden Knights will take to the road Friday to face a winless St. Paul team it defeated last year, 34-13, at 7 p.m.

“We're excited about moving into league this week. … St. Paul is 0-5 on the season and our approach is that this is a brand new season because it's the beginning of league,” St. Francis Coach Jim Bonds said. “Everyone starts from scratch here, everyone goes 0-0 into league.”

With an average 30.2 margin of victory this year, the Knights jumped from sixth to No. 4 in the CIF Southern Section Western Division this week with a 48-14 win over Monrovia, the No. 1 team in the Mid-Valley Division, last Friday.

While each week seems to bring a different standout, St. Francis has relied on quarterback Ty Gangi, running back Joe Mudie and wide receiver Dylan Crawford week-in and week-out. The Knights have also benefited from a solid offensive line and defense that's allowing just 13.4 points a game.


In the win at Monrovia, Gangi completed 12 of 26 passes for 305 yards, four touchdowns and one interception. He also ran for 23 yards and two scores on six carries and caught an eight-yard touchdown pass from Matt Gonzalez.

Crawford logged four receptions for 162 yards and two touchdowns, while Mudie produced 123 yards from scrimmage (65 rushing, 58 receiving) and a score.

St. Francis' core three will look to stay on their game against the Swordsmen. While St. Paul is winless, it has played a tough nonleague schedule against teams like Buena Park (40-20), Mater Dei (56-7), La Habra (41-7) Damien (34-18) and Bishop Amat (49-10).

“They've played some extremely tough teams and they're not going to be surprised by us when we take the field,” Bonds said. “Our message to our team is to be 1-0 in league this week.”

Pasadena Poly vs. Flintridge Prep at Occidental College, 7 p.m.: Having shown some late promise in its final two nonleague games, Flintridge Prep opens the Prep League looking to put it at all together.

The Rebels (0-5) and Panthers (4-0) have had completely different nonleague experiences. Prep fell out of the CIF Southern Section Northeast Division rankings and Poly ascended right near the top, currently ranked No. 2.

After posting a strong 46-33 win over Pasadena Poly last year, Flintridge Prep will probably not be taken lightly by its league rival.

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