For Falcons, it's do or die against Dogs

GLENDALE — The following are previews of the area's upcoming high school football games.

With two Pacific League game left, there's still time for the Crescenta Valley High football team to salvage a season gone south. Forty-eight minutes, to be exact.

Friday night's 7 p.m. matchup with reigning league co-champion Burbank at Burroughs High's Memorial Field is gut-check time for the Falcons, who at 4-4 and 2-3 in league are already on the fringe of the playoff chase and in danger of slipping out altogether with a fourth straight loss.

"Obviously, it's a huge game for us, we have to win both [of our remaining games] to have a chance to make playoffs," Crescenta Valley Coach Paul Schilling said. "We're taking this as a playoff game. We are going in with that mentality that if you want another week, you have to win."

Schilling said the Falcons' main focus of preparation for this week is twofold — cutting down on penalties and playing better in the second half. The latter would figure to stick particularly in the Falcons' minds after taking a 14-0 first-half lead over co-champion Burroughs last week before losing, 21-14.

"We kind of ran out of gas against Burroughs," Schilling said. "That's our goal this week, to maintain it."

Burbank, which is 6-2, 4-1 in league and ranked 10th in the CIF Southern Section Southeast Division, is coming off a 45-26 over Pasadena. Adam Colman passed for 222 yards and four touchdowns and Ulisies Ochoa rushed 229 yards and another two scores.

The Bulldogs should also have running back Quortney Brazier, who has over 500 yards rushing this season, back from a one-game suspension, making their offense that much deeper and more dangerous.

"We think we match up with them," Schilling said. "They run an unconventional offense and we've been practicing a lot against that."

Paul Perugini is continuing to settle into the quarterback job he won two weeks ago, passing for 141 yards and rushing for a team-high 62 yards against Burroughs. Sean Johnson also had a breakout game against the Indians with 60 rushing yards and the team's only two touchdowns.

"We like our chances, but we've gotta play, though," Schilling said. "They're a very good team."

Flintridge Prep at Viewpoint (2:30 p.m. Friday): The Rebels may not have much to play for as far as a playoff berth, as two of the top three spots in the Prep League, which carry automatic postseason entrance, have already been locked up by Rio Hondo Prep and Pasadena Poly and the third is more than a longshot.

But as far as putting an uplifting ending on a frustrating season and getting its first win of the season, Prep definitely has some motivation.

With games against two teams the Rebels have historically fared well against in league rounding out the schedule, they will look to get their first win on Friday to ideally work towards ending the season with their first winning streak Nov. 12 against Webb.

Coming off three straight league losses against the ranked trio of Chadwick, Rio Hondo Prep and Pasadena Poly, the Rebels (0-6-1, 0-3) are undoubtedly a little beat up, but probably won't have their hands as full Friday with a Patriots team that comes in at 2-4-1, 0-2-1.

Adam Markun leads the Patriots' rushing attack with 983 yards and eight touchdowns.

Prep will look to get its Kyle McDonald-led offense back on track after a couple of lean weeks in blowout losses to the Kares and Panthers.

Glendale at Arcadia (7 p.m. Friday): A first-half team if ever there was one, the Nitros' defense has been consistently effective at giving them a chance to stay in games. That's hardly been evident in their final scores simply because their offense hasn't been effective enough to capitalize on several good starts.

Even if Glendale (0-8, 0-5) can contain the offense of Arcadia (5-3, 4-1), which is ranked ninth in the Southeast Division, at the onset of the game, as it did in the team's 31-6 to Muir last week, any chance of upsetting the Apaches will come down to putting points on the board early.

Quarterback Alex Yoon has become a dependable leader and Chan Kim adds a power-running element to a simplified Nitros offense that's yet to take the next step.

Hoover vs. Pasadena (7 p.m. Friday) at Moyse Field: Like their cross-town rival the Nitros, the Tornadoes are still without a win in league and perhaps counting on the season-finale "Battle for the Victory Bell" as the best chance to get one.

Still, Pasadena (3-5, 2-3) is hardly a juggernaut and if Hoover (1-7, 0-5) can recapture some of its early season momentum and confidence, this could be a winnable game.

But with a string of league blowouts in their wake, the Tornadoes lately have hardly resembled the team that seemed to be turning a corner entering league play.

St. Francis at Cathedral (7:30 p.m. Friday): With their playoff aspirations on life support last week, the Golden Knights came through with a huge season-saving Mission League win over longtime rival St. Paul on Friday.

For that to matter in the long run, though, St. Francis will need to repeat the process twice more.

In its first year of Mission League membership, Cathedral is one of the new foes on this year's expanded league schedule and a dangerous one at that, as the Phantoms gained their promotion to compete with the St. Francises, Chaminades and Serras based on a string of successful seasons in the Del Rey League.

After their season came to a standstill with a four-game losing streak, the Golden Knights appear primed to finish strong, with left tackle Patrick Carroll and running backs Michael Melnick and Austin De Los Santos returning to the fold last week and quarterback Brett Nelson putting together a strong season.

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