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El Modena Is Third Straight Century Team to Finish No. 1

El Modena High School has won the mythical Orange County prep football championship, marking the third straight year that a member of the Century League has won the title.

The Vanguards (9-1) gathered all 10 first-place votes to gain the top spot in the final Orange County Sportswriters’ Assn. poll. El Modena follows former county champions Foothill (1984) and Santa Ana (1983). El Modena opens defense of its Southern Conference title on Friday night against Paramount in Fred Kelly Stadium.

The Vanguards also became the first team in 10 years to finish second in their league and win the county title. Foothill, which tied for third with Valencia, won the Century League title. Sonora finished second behind El Dorado in the Orange League in 1975, but won the county title.

Two schools--Edison and Mater Dei--finished in the top 10 after impressive victories in the final week of the season. Edison romped past Marina, 51-14, to finish fifth. Mater Dei scored a stunning 27-25 upset over previous poll leader Servite to finish seventh. Neither team was ranked last week.

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El Toro, champion of the South Coast League, failed to receive enough votes to enter the top 10, although the Chargers defeated second-ranked Capistrano Valley and ninth-ranked Mission Viejo.

The writers’ poll:

Pos. School (League) Record 1. El Modena (Century) 9-1

2. Capistrano Valley (South Coast) 8-1-1

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3. Foothill (Century) 8-2

(Tie) Valencia (Orange) 8-2

5. Edison (Sunset)) 8-2

6. Servite (Angelus) 8-2

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7. Mater Dei (Angelus) 7-3

8. Saddleback (Sea View) 9-1

9. Mission Viejo (South Coast) 8-1-1

10. Newport Harbor (Sea View) 8-2

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Others Receiving Votes: Los Alamitos, Pacifica, El Toro and La Habra.


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