Corona Centennial looks to pull off another stunning victory
In a high school football season that has produced so many twists, turns and improbable story lines, Corona Centennial High Coach Matt Logan is hoping for one more.
His team will seek to knock off an unbeaten opponent for the fourth consecutive week, only this time it’s Concord De La Salle (14-0) and legendary Coach Bob Ladouceur that the Huskies must get past in Saturday’s CIF state championship Open Division bowl game at 8 p.m. at the Home Depot Center.
“They are what they are. They’re the pinnacle of high school football,” Logan said.
It will be the featured game of five bowl matchups Friday and Saturday. Three of the games involve Southern Section teams.
Besides Centennial-De La Salle, Long Beach Poly (12-3) will face Granite Bay (12-3) in the Division I bowl on Friday at 8 p.m. Gardena Serra (13-2) will take on Oakdale (14-1) on Saturday at 4 p.m. in the Division II bowl.
The biggest challenge for Logan could be getting his players physically and mentally ready after the Huskies (14-1) pulled out a 41-34 victory over Harbor City Narbonne on Saturday night in the Open Division regional bowl game at Cerritos College.
“It was crazy,” Logan said.
Narbonne quarterback Troy Williams rallied the Gauchos from a 27-8 halftime deficit. He passed for 367 yards and three touchdowns and ran for 105 yards and one touchdown. A.J. Richardson’s three-yard touchdown run with 1 minute 9 seconds left tied the score. But Richardson was injured on the play, and since he’s also Narbonne’s holder for PATs, Coach Manuel Douglas decided to go for a two-point conversion. Williams was stopped short on a run.
Centennial then got the ball back, and quarterback Robert Webber drove the team to the Narbonne 15, where Tre Watson caught a game-winning touchdown pass with 22 seconds left. Webber threw four touchdown passes and passed for 317 yards.
“It’s disappointing,” Douglas said. “I’m proud of our guys for fighting back and tying the game. We didn’t get it done.”
Centennial’s standout lineman, Cameron Hunt, was sent to the sideline in the second half because of cramps. There were lots of other bumps and bruises for the Huskies.
“We’ll come to work as best we can next week and see if we can muster up enough guys to play,” Logan said.
De La Salle cruised to a 49-15 victory over Folsom in the Northern California regional final. It will be the third bowl game between De La Salle and Centennial. The Huskies lost to De La Salle in 2007 and beat the Spartans in 2008.
Ladouceur will enter with a coaching record of 398-25-3.
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