Eric Sondheimer has been covering high school sports for the Los Angeles Times since 1997 and in Southern California since 1976. Get his latest from the field and follow all our prep sports coverage and analysis here.
No. 1-ranked Santa Ana Mater Dei was pretty good without its No. 1 receiver, Amon-ra St. Brown, who has been recovering from a finger injury.
So can you imagine how good the Monarchs must be with him on the field? Fans at Mission Viejo High got the chance to see on Saturday night
On Mater Dei's first two offensive plays, St. Brown caught a six-yard pass, then a 25-yard touchdown pass. He finished with nine receptions for 147 yards and three touchdowns in one half of action as the Monarchs rolled to their fourth consecutive victory, a 62-14 triumph over New Jersey Bergen Catholic.
Add St. Brown with a receiver lineup that includes Bru McCoy, Nikko Remigio and CJ Parks and you begin to understand how dangerous it makes the Monarchs with quarterback J.T. Daniels doing the passing.
Mater Dei next travels to Northern California to face Stockton St. Mary's on Saturday at Levi's Stadium before getting a bye to prepare for the start of what's going to be a demanding Trinity League season. The Monarchs are facing showdown games every week, starting with Santa Margarita on Oct. 6, followed by St. John Bosco on Oct. 13.
But having a healthy St. Brown, the consensus No. 1 receiver in SoCal, will certainly help.