It’s time for some first-round predictions from Pac-5 Division.
Long Beach Cabrillo vs. St. John Bosco at Cerritos College: There will be no miracle in this one. Cabrillo lost to JSerra, 40-0; lost to Orange Lutheran, 52-8; lost to Long Beach Poly, 49-0. The Jaguars get credit for playing good teams, but St. John Bosco is focused, improving and deserves the No. 1 seed. The pick: St. John Bosco.
St. Bonaventure at Norco: Junior QB Victor Viramontes has passed for 1,506 yards and rushed for 1,241 yards. That makes him one of the most dangerous double-threat QBs in Southern California. St. Bonaventure hasn’t exactly played well in big games, losing to JSerra and Westlake. But if quarterback Ricky Town and running back Marcus Chambers can do what they do best . . . The pick: St. Bonaventure.
Santa Margarita at Crespi: Santa Margarita has lots of weapons on offense with K.J. Costello and Kyle Sweet. But the Eagles have also been giving up a lot of yards on the ground, and Crespi is not the type of team to come in with defensive problems. On the other hand, Crespi makes just enough penalties and turnovers to give good teams a chance. The pick: Crespi.
Servite vs. Long Beach Poly at Veterans Stadium: Servite, at 4-6 and a fifth-place team, has nothing to lose. It’s a great opportunity for a team that has under achieved to play loose and put together one of its best performances. Poly has been bored after routing Moore League foes and now must elevate its game. The pick: Poly.
Gardena Serra at Corona Centennial: Whoa, Nelly. There will be so many future college standouts on the field in this one that it should be mandatory viewing for college recruiters. Serra has played as well as any team over the last three weeks on both sides of the ball. The Cavaliers are reaching peak form. From game one to game 10, Centennial has improved unlike any other team. Its offense is in high gear. This game should be a classic and I’m going. The pick: Centennial.
Mater Dei at Westlake: Westlake should have won the first meeting, but lost, 28-27, on a blocked field goal. The Monarchs held out several players from that game. Westlake has played very well the last two weeks when its season was on the line. Mater Dei doesn’t lose playoff games in the early rounds. The pick: Mater Dei.
Lakewood at Bishop Amat: If you’re going to this one, all you have to do is pay attention to juniors Tyler Vaughns and Trevon Sidney, Nos. 1 and 2 in your program. They’re like twins, playing receiver and defensive back. They’re the best players on the field. They’re worth the price of admission. The pick: Bishop Amat.
Corona Santiago vs. JSerra at Saddleback College: As good as QB Blake Barnett is for Santiago, he better understand that JSerra’s secondary might be second to none. And JSerra QB Nick Robinson is pretty good himself. The pick: JSerra.