Two-time defending City Section Division I champion Harbor City Narbonne beat out Crenshaw and Venice to be awarded the No. 1 seed for the Division I football playoffs that begin on Friday.
“Wow, wow, wow, wow,” Crenshaw Coach Robert Garrett said of the decision on Saturday.
Narbonne (8-2), No. 2 Crenshaw (6-4) and No. 3 Venice (8-2) all had arguments to be No. 1, but the seeding committee gave the nod to the Gauchos based on overall strength of the Marine League and a better record than Crenshaw. Carson (5-5) picked up the No. 4 seed.
What it means is that Crenshaw and Venice are headed on a collision course to meet in the semifinals if both schools win their first two games. Crenshaw could have to face Coliseum League rival Dorsey in the quarterfinals, and Venice could end up playing San Pedro in the quarterfinals for the third time in the last four years.
“I don’t understand,” Venice Coach Angelo Gasca said. “They have some sort of formula and don’t follow the formula.”
Narbonne Coach Manuel Douglas tried to be diplomatic about his selection as No. 1.
“I think we were in the conversation,” he said. “All of us in the top three had arguments to be No. 1. We all lost to Southern Section teams. It was how we lost and the fact our league is the toughest. If you look at the total body of work, we are deserving.”
The seedings for Division II were equally confusing. San Fernando (10-0) received the No. 1 seed, with Granada Hills (5-5) getting No. 2 despite a loss to Chatsworth on Friday. Eagle Rock (10-0) is No. 3 and Sylmar (7-3) No. 4.
“Ridiculous,” said one City Division II coach.
Granada Hills received the No. 2 seed based on strength of schedule. But if the committee used that reasoning, then how come Sylmar, with a win over Division I team Arleta and a close loss to San Fernando, isn’t ahead of Eagle Rock?
In Division III, the top seeds were View Park, Sun Valley Poly, Bernstein and Wilson.