Sierra Canyon takes over for Narbonne in trying to beat San Diego champion

Sierra Canyon quarterback Chayden Peery dives into the end zone for a touchdown.
(Shotgun Spratling / For The Times)

For the first time since 2017, Harbor City Narbonne and San Diego Cathedral Catholic won’t be meeting in a CIF state bowl game. Narbonne was banned from the City Section playoffs and Cathedral Catholic lost in the San Diego Open Division playoffs.

The new matchup in the Division 1-AA state bowl game sends Southern Section Division 2 champion Chatsworth Sierra Canyon against San Diego Open Division champion La Mesa Helix on Friday at Helix.

Helix is the school that produced Heisman Trophy winner Reggie Bush and basketball Hall of Famer Bill Walton.


Helix is 11-1 and has overcome the loss to injury of its star running back, Elelyon Noa. Sophomore Christian Washington has taken over and rushed for more than 1,000 yards.

This will be a game that tells whether Sierra Canyon and its group of talented young players is ready for Division 1 football in 2020. The Trailblazers have been building yearly for this moment.

Junior quarterback Chayden Peery has gotten through 14 games with just one interception. It means he’s doing what good quarterbacks do — avoid mistakes that hurt a team. He has passed for 2,885 yards and 17 touchdowns.

But it’s defense that could bring a state championship to the Trailblazers (13-1). The defense shut down two very good offensive teams already this season — Simi Valley Grace Brethren and West Hills Chaminade. Veteran linebacker JD Hernandez is up to 117 tackles. The secondary is outstanding, led by DJ Harvey. And the tackling by everybody has been terrific.

San Diego vs. Los Angeles has produced some memorable games and this one should be another. The winner advances to play either Fresno Central or El Dorado Hills Oak Ridge on Dec. 13 at Cerritos College.