Chargers, Friars collide Thursday night

Thursday marks the beginning of a three-week gauntlet to the nonleague portion of its schedule for the Edison High football team.

For starters, the Servite Friars come calling on the Chargers in an intriguing 7 p.m. matchup at Orange Coast College. It's the first game in two weeks for the Chargers who were idle a week ago.

Servite, meanwhile, has been anything but idle the past two weeks. Since falling in its opener to Las Vegas Bishop Gorman, the Friars have scored impressive victories over CIF Southern Section ranked opponents, Long Beach Poly and La Mirada.

Edison Coach Dave White said his team will have to play its best game Thursday. It will be one of the tougher showdowns of the season for the defending CIF Southern Section Southwest Division champion Chargers.

Edison (2-0) was idle last week and hasn't played since Sept. 5 when it shut down Los Angeles Garfield, 14-0.

Servite has responded nicely from its 41-17 season-opening loss Aug. 30 to Bishop Gorman. The Friars went out the next week and knocked off Long Beach Poly, 31-24, and last week won, 38-14, at La Mirada.

The Friars (2-1) are ranked No. 6 in the Pac-5 Division.

White has seen Servite up close: he was in attendance for both the Poly (No. 7, Pac-5 Division) and La Mirada (No. 8, Southeast Division) games.

"They are good," White said of the Friars. "Their quarterback [Travis Waller] is scary. "He's like a (UCLA quarterback) Brett Hundley/(San Francisco 49ers quarterback) Colin Kaepernick. He's a very, very good runner and thrower. They are very balanced on offense and have been putting up a lot of yards and points.

"Defensively, it's a typically tough Servite team. They aren't very big but they are fundamentally sound."

Waller is coming off a 15-of-18, 179-yard, two-touchdown performance at La Mirada. He is averaging 154 yards passing per game.

White said the bye week afforded his team to do several things.

"It's nice to get a jump on getting ready for Servite," he said. "We're getting a little bit healthier, too, but we aren't at full strength."

The Chargers will be without three key starters. Two-way player Jake Favreau, who starts at receiver and defensive back, injured his knee in the Sept. 5 win over Garfield. They are without two of three starting linebackers as senior Josh Marks is out due to injury, and Dylan Sneed, a team captain, is out with a torn ACL which he incurred during preseason two-a-days.

"It's a big blow to not have Dylan [Sneed] out on the field, or with his leadership," White said. "That's why we talk to our guys about being ready to step up when needed, and we need a few guys to do that.

"I'm excited for this game. It's Servite and Edison, and it's always a fun game."

Next week, Edison goes up against Mater Dei, the No. 3 team in the Pac-5 Division. In two weeks, they conclude nonleague play against San Clemente.

Thursday at Cap Sheue Field at Huntington Beach High, Fountain Valley looks to bounce back from its first loss of the season when the Barons play host to Wilmington Banning at 7 p.m.

Fountain Valley won its first two games but came up short Friday in a 24-17 home loss to Trabuco Hills. Fountain Valley had battled back from deficits of 14-3 and 17-10 to pull even (17-17) with the Mustangs through three quarters. Trailing 24-17, the Barons had a potential, late scoring drive ended on a fumble inside the Trabuco Hills 35-yard line.

Sophomore kicker Jonah Mack scored on a 34-yard field goal to give Fountain Valley its only lead (3-0), junior receiver Ryan Finley scored on a 77-yard pass play from senior quarterback Travis Hood, and senior safety Jacob Church returned an interception 30 yards for a touchdown to tie the score (17-17) midway through the third quarter.

"We had our chances but one thing we need to learn, is to start minimizing our mistakes," Fountain Valley Coach Ray Fenton said. "We had opportunities. You don't like to lose, but I thought we grew as a team. We learned that we can play with them. I thought there were more positives than negatives for us."

Banning dropped its first game of the season but has won two straight. The Pilots last week scored a 36-24 win over Hamilton. Senior quarterback Austin Mendoza threw for 181 yards with three touchdowns with two of those scoring passes going to junior receiver Janson Navarrete. The week prior, Mendoza passed for 375 yards in a 48-34 win over Torrance.

Friday games

Trabuco Hills (3-0) vs. Huntington Beach (2-1)

(7 p.m., Huntington Beach High)

Trabuco Hills will attempt to finish 3-0 against Sunset League competition during nonleague play when it returns to Cap Sheue Field to battle Huntington one week after it knocked off Fountain Valley.

The Mustangs moved into a tie for the No. 9 spot in this week's Pac-5 Division poll following a 24-17 victory against Fountain Valley last Friday. Senior quarterback Tommy Kelley threw for 170 yards and two touchdowns to highlight the win.

A week earlier, Trabuco Hills knocked off Newport Harbor, 35-20.

Huntington was handed its first loss of the season last week, 49-31, by JSerra at Saddleback College. Senior quarterback Kai Ross was 21 of 32 for 241 yards with TD passes to junior Maurice Barber and junior Nolan Thompson, and also rushed for 93 yards and a score. Sophomore running back Travis Heer ran for 75 yards and a score.

""We were able to move the ball pretty well but shot ourselves in the foot with turnovers, or missed third-down conversions," Huntington Coach Eric Lo said. "We'd do something well, then do something that hurt us.

"We recovered a blocked punt, but fumbled the ball right back to them on the first play from scrimmage. We tied the score (14-14) but gave up a kickoff return for a touchdown. We kicked a field goal to start the second half to get within 28-24, but then we let them convert on a third-and-20 play."

Heer got his first start at running back against JSerra and will start in that spot against Trabuco Hills.

"He's really good," Lo said of Heer.

Lo knows that Trabuco will be a big test for his squad.

"Any time you play Trabuco, it's going to be a physical game," Lo said. "They have very good skill players and are a well-coached team. We will need to find a way to put things together and play a full four quarters of football. We'll need to do that against Trabuco."

San Juan Hills (3-0) vs. Marina (1-2)

(7 p.m., Westminster High)

Marina faces its toughest opponent to date in the undefeated Stallions.

The Vikings rallied to take their first lead in the fourth quarter against rival Westminster in last week's 51st annual Black & Blue Game, but let that lead slip away in the final two minutes and lost, 32-28. Senior quarterback Daylan Harmeyer threw for a career-high 300 yards with two touchdown passes to junior receiver Josh Gordon (three receptions, 119 yards) and one to senior receiver Cooper Davies (five receptions, 69 yards). Junior running back Steve Hernandez scored on a 59-yard run, and Landon Marshall hit three field goals in the loss.

"We must finish," Marina Coach George Pascoe said. "First lead with two minutes left, and lose. Can't happen.

"San Juan Hills will be the toughest test to date. They are really good. They do it all on offense."

The Stallions went to 3-0 by routing Artesia, 48-22, last week. Senior quarterback Jacob Gibson threw for 171 yards and two touchdowns and senior running back Brad Kremer ran for 119 yards and a score.

Gibson is averaging 203 passing yards per game, and the Stallions are averaging 43 points per game on offense.

Pascoe said senior receiver/defensive back Clay Fischer was injured during the Westminster game and is out for the season.

Ocean View (0-2) vs. Cerritos (0-2)

(7 p.m., Gahr High)

Ocean View looks to put itself in the win column when it takes on a Cerritos team looking to do the same.

The Seahawks dropped their second game this season on Sept. 12 when they lost, 41-14, at Estancia. Turnovers have hurt the Seahawks in its losses to the Eagles and Marina.

They committed five — four by fumble, in the loss to Estancia.

"Last Thursday was a tough night, as we continue to turn the ball over way too much," Ocean View Coach Luis Nunez said.

Senior running back Daniel Valencia rushed for both touchdowns and ran for 216 yards on 26 carries.

Nunez said Valencia is "out indefinitely due to being diagnosed with viral meningitis." A few other Seahawks, senior defensive back Tristan Wenschlag (knee) and safety Zeddie Morgan (knee), also are sidelined due to injury.

Backup tailback Kevin Tierney is still battling a high ankle sprain he sustained during preseason camp, Nunez said, adding that senior receiver Alex Aldanese has been converted from receiver to running back this week, to fill in for Valencia.

Nunez said that Aldanese is playing his first year of football.

"We are banged up and need some guys to step up," Nunez said. "Cerritos is still running the double wing T and has some skill guys that can hurt us. It won't be as easy as it was last year, as they are better. We need to have a great week of practice and have someone step up offensively this week."

Senior running back LaMarr Crowder has rushed for 244 yards and three touchdowns in two games for Cerritos.

The Dons were shut out last week, 41-0, by Gahr, and lost their opener to Valley Christian, 42-28.

Grace Brethren (2-1) vs. Brethren Christian (0-1)

(7 p.m., Ocean View High)

It's been a strange start to the season for Brethren Christian, which returns to action following a two-week layoff.

The Warriors haven't played since Aug. 30. Their game against Animo Leadership was canceled, and last week, they were idle.

"It was challenging and it's a very odd situation," BC Coach Pat McInally said of the layoff. "We were allowed to use pads last week due to the bye week, but we worked on making adjustments and strategies. The kids have worked hard. It's like starting the season all over."

Simi Valley Grace Brethren started out 2-0 but lost a close game (34-28) last a week to Frazier Mountain.

The Lancers come into Friday's contest averaging 32 points on offense.

"This will be a challenging game for us," McInally said. "They are a young team, with no seniors, and they are very resilient. It will be a good test for us."

In its only game thus far, BC dropped a 41-23 game to Arrowhead Christian Academy. Quarterback Jack McInally threw for 419 yards with three touchdowns in a game the Eagles had led, 23-20.

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