Leuzinger, ranked No. 3 in CIF Division II, will try to spoil the debut of Bishop Montgomery Coach Steve Carroll in the first meeting between the schools in recent memory. Leuzinger Coach Steve Carnes has chosen to ignore the preseason hype about his team's alleged strengths: "Ratings mean nothing, especially before the season." Carroll expects a physical game and said the Knights must stop Leuzinger's skill-position players. Olympian quarterback Zak Odom and receiver Quang Banks are highly touted, and Carnes says they will put the ball in the air, but "we're not the San Francisco 49ers by any means." Carroll said huge lineman Chris Maumalanga (6-4, 330) may miss the game because of a badly sprained right ankle.
Friday, 7:30 at Bishop Montgomery.
West Torrance vs. Verbum Dei
The Warriors, ranked No. 7 in CIF Division VII, seek their first road victory against the fifth-ranked Eagles of Verbum Dei. To do it, they must ground yet another big, fast Eagle team. All-Camino Real running back Artis Houston, who rushed for 907 yards in '88, heads the Verbum Dei offense. West's junior quarterback, John Walsh, leads the Warriors in his first varsity start. "We have to make sure they don't get big plays," West co-Coach Mark Knox said. "Last year they scored three TDs over 50 yards long on us." Verbum Dei shut out the Warriors, 18-0, in that game. A Warrior victory would prove the experts right in predicting a West resurgence after a 4-6 season.
Friday, 7:30 at Jackie Robinson Stadium.
Palos Verdes vs. No. Torrance
North will try to avenge last year's defeat at Palos Verdes and improve Coach Don Bohannon's 1-3 record against the Sea Kings. Both teams are young, but North has the dangerous tandem of quarterback Brian Jurado and wide receiver Eric Hansen, who led the Saxons to the championship of the L.A. Games passing tournament this summer. North returns four starters. Palos Verdes also returns four, led by quarterback Blake Anderson and wide receiver Mark Antrobius.
Friday, 7:30 at North Torrance.
Rolling Hills vs. Redondo
Two teams that were on the brink of winning seasons last year--Rolling Hills was 5-5 and Redondo was 5-6--square off in an evenly matched opener. Redondo Coach Les Congelliere is 3-2 against the Titans. Two untested quarterbacks--junior Bill DeMucci of Rolling Hills and senior Brian Davison of Redondo--get their first shot as varsity starters. "It's a typical (Gary) Kimbrell team," Congelliere said of Rolling Hills and its respected coach. "They are sound fundamentally and their running backs run hard."
Friday, 7:30 at Redondo.