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Former UCLA assistants are back in L.A. as head coaches

Mark Gottfried and Lorenzo Romar could form quite a comedy duo. They were assistant coaches on Jim Harrick’s NCAA championship team at UCLA in 1995 before heading off to become head coaches.

Now they’ve returned to Southland basketball, taking over as head coaches this season at CSUN and Pepperdine, respectively. The former Calabasas neighbors were enjoying their reunion Tuesday at the Southern California Basketball Coaches Tip-Off Luncheon at the Los Angeles Athletic Club.

Pepperdine hosts CSUN on Nov. 10.

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  • Football
Bru McCoy of Mater Dei is considered the No. 1 two-way player in the Southland.
Bru McCoy of Mater Dei is considered the No. 1 two-way player in the Southland. (Luis Sinco)

There has been no better two-way player in Southern California than Bru McCoy of Santa Ana Mater Dei.

As a receiver, he has caught 35 passes for 648 yards and nine touchdowns. As a linebacker, he has five sacks.

He’ll receive plenty of attention from St. John Bosco in Friday’s showdown game at Santa Ana Stadium.

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The Oaks Christian-at-Calabasas football game scheduled for next Friday has been selected to be televised on Fox Sports West.

Prep Zone games to be shown:

Mater Dei vs. JSerra; St. Francis vs. Cathedral; Tesoro vs. Capistrano Valley; Paramount vs. Gahr.

Mater Dei is No. 1 and St. John Bosco is No. 2 in this week’s Southern Section Division 1 football poll. The two teams meet on Friday at Santa Ana Stadium. Here’s the link to the complete rankings.

Mater Dei is No. 1 and Redondo Union is No. 2 in Division 1 girls’ volleyball. Here’s the link to the complete rankings.

Newport Harbor is No. 1 and is Loyola No. 2 in boys’ water polo. Here’s the link to the complete rankings.

  • Basketball

Unlike in football, City Section teams will be ready to more than just try to hold their own against Southern Section teams when the basketball season begins next month.

Westchester, Fairfax, Washington Prep, Birmingham, Fremont, Dorsey and Taft all have the talent to be competitive against the best.

During fall action, the City teams have been playing well. Many of the teams have been strengthened with transfer students.

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  • Football

With a five-game winning streak, Sherman Oaks Notre Dame (5-2, 2-0) is playing in what could be the Mission League championship game on Friday when it hosts Bishop Amat (6-1, 2-0).

The Knights have been a surprise team but really opened eyes with a 38-7 win over Gardena Serra.

Two sophomores have emerged as standouts. Linebacker Jacob Moore has six sacks. Quarterback Cooper Meek has eight touchdown passes, no interceptions and also has rushed for eight touchdowns.

  • Football

Unbeaten Mission Viejo has informed the Southern Section office that it will forfeit ifs first four football games after discovering an ineligible player.

Principal Tricia Osborne said in a statement that “an error in paperwork submission” led to the player being declared ineligible.

Mission Viejo was 8-0 and will drop to 4-4 overall and 2-0 in the South Coast League. Liberty, Santa Margarita, La Habra and Villa Park will pick up victories.

Mission Viejo is ranked No. 5 in the Division 1 rankings. The forfeits are unlikely to have a major impact on the Diablos if they win out, but another victory helps Santa Margarita’s bid to secure an at-large playoff berth.

Wednesday, Oct. 10th

8 MAN

SOUTHERN SECTION

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  • Football

From the first day of the season, Corona Centennial coach Matt Logan has been saying his team could have one of its best defenses, and so far, the Huskies are delivering.

The defense has produced 31 sacks for the 7-0 team.

Leading the way with five sacks is Malik Scurlock, a 6-foot-3, 285-pound senior lineman. Senior Nick Smith and standout sophomore Korey Foreman have four sacks each.

Kai Puailoa Rojas is a two-sport standout at St. Bonaventure.
Kai Puailoa Rojas is a two-sport standout at St. Bonaventure. (Puailoa Rojas family.)

Unselfishness. Humility. Loyalty. Those are just a few of the many positive qualities St. Bonaventure High has seen from two-sport standout Kai Puailoa Rojas.

In football, he has played quarterback, receiver, defensive back, returned punts and kickoffs. In basketball, he averaged 20.2 points last season.

The most stunning scene came from a basketball playoff game. The opposing team went all out to stop him. He ended scoring zero points. And yet, there he was celebrating afterward because his team won. He didn’t care about how many points he scored. He cared about his team advancing to the next round.

“He’s about trying to win,” football coach Tony Henney said.

Said Rojas: “Every time I got the ball, they put everyone on me. I tried to play defense and help the team. If I’m scoring and we win, that’s great. But if I don’t score, it’s still a good win.”

In football, St. Bonaventure is 6-2 overall and 1-1 in the Marmonte League. Henney has nicknamed him “The Video Game” because he’s involved in so many things during a game.

He had 174 yards rushing, including a 70-yard touchdown run,  in a 39-7 loss to Westlake on Friday. On the season, he has four interceptions, rushed for more than 500 yards, passed for more than 800 yards and caught 15 passes, including three touchdowns.

 He used to wake up at 5 a.m. to travel to school when he was living in Santa Barbara. That means he’s ready for potential early morning reveille if he went to the Naval Academy.

“I don’t mind,” he said.