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Wildcats look to stop skid

West Ranch plays playoff team at Valencia

Posted: October 2, 2008 8:58 p.m.
Updated: December 4, 2008 5:00 a.m.
West Ranch High senior quarterback Jake Bernards hands the ball off to running back Ross Bacon in a football game recently. West Ranch High senior quarterback Jake Bernards hands the ball off to running back Ross Bacon in a football game recently.
West Ranch High senior quarterback Jake Bernards hands the ball off to running back Ross Bacon in a football game recently.

A three-game losing streak can be prevented by West Ranch tonight, in a game against Glendora at Valencia High School.

The Wildcats will be playing a team that went 5-0 in the Sierra League (9-3 overall) last season and advanced to the CIF-SS Division I quarterfinals.

West Ranch (1-2) has played against teams that have a shotgun, singleback formation, just like the Tartans (1-2).

"Glendora's very disciplined," Wildcats head coach Mike Kane said. "They're a very tough opponent."

The last time the Wildcats had a losing streak of more than two games was a four-game struggle in Foothill League play last year.

This will be the second-to-last game before league play begins at home against Golden Valley on Oct. 17.

Many of West Ranch's opponents, including Beverly Hills who beat the Wildcats, 41-31 last week, have prepared the team for league play.

"Fortunately, all the teams we've played have been in the shotgun, singleback formation," Kane said. "I really think that's prepared us for league. They do a little bit of both, run and pass. They're pretty well-balanced."

The defense has allowed 40 points in both losses, while scoring at least 28 in all three games. Defensive end Hank Lambirth, the team's edge rusher, is out for this game but could be back next week for a game at Los Osos in Rancho Cucamonga.

"That's our Achilles heel," Kane said. "Believe it or not, we improved with our tackling and being on the right spots."

The 3-5 defense Glendora can turn into a 4-3. Quarterback Jake Bernards passed for 348 yards and two touchdowns in the 10-point loss last week, while Bacon ran for 106 yards and two TDs.

"Our big three are playing well," Kane said. "Jake, Ross and (offensive tackle) Robert Waterman. Jake hasn't sacked often. We're scoring quite a few points."

Last season, Glendora beat West Ranch at home, 28-7.

Canyon (2-2) vs. Chaminade (1-2)
The Cowboys are looking to get their third win of the season when they take on Chaminade High at Harry Welch Stadium at 7 p.m.

Plagued with injuries on defense, Canyon will need standout performances offensively from receivers Charlie Cusumano, Chris Rivas and Kevin Voogt.

Canyon's only returning defensive starter, Parker Sutton, is sidelined with a broken ankle.

Crespi transfer and defensive lineman Chris Reed is out with neck and knee injuries.

Not to mention defensive end Donovan Brownlee who is out for the season after breaking his leg during the match-up against Granada Hills on September 12.

Nate Marroquin will carry most of the defensive load for Canyon.

Chaminade, of the Mission League, is coming off a shutout loss to Southern Section Northwest Division champion Oaks Christian last Friday night.

The Eagles will be led by Oaks Christian transfer, quarterback Anthony Vitto.

Currently Vitto is 32-of-71 for 432 yards with three touchdown passes.

Equally threatening, will be receiver Tim Rowley who has amassed 242 yards on 12 receptions.

Hart (1-2) vs. Claremont (2-2)
The Indians non-league conference has not started out in their favor.

After a 42-20 loss to Westlake last week, Hart looks to rebound against Claremont High tonight at the College of the Canyons at 7:30 p.m.

Turnovers, fumbles and miscues where the downfalls in the Indians loss last Friday night.

It will be an effort on both sides of the ball to get it done for Hart in this contest.

Hart quarterback Spenser Souza will need another dominating performance. Souza rushed for 57 yards scoring two touchdowns on quarterback keepers against Westlake.

Souza finished the game 12-of-24 for 172 yards.

With running back/linebacker Demitri Diamond still sidelined with a shoulder injury, defense will need big numbers from junior defensive back Ty MacArthur and lineman Adam Bouyer.

Last season, Claremont finished winless in the Baseline league.

The Wolfpack had a fairly tough schedule and also had youth on its side.

However, this year, Claremont returns 16 starters with nine of those being on offense.

Claremont is led by quarterback Daniel Kessler who is currently 24-of-30 for 232 yards and running back Tyler Singleton who has amassed 659 yards on 89 carries.

Saugus (2-1) vs. Notre Dame (3-0)
The Saugus Centurions went 10-2 before the postseason last year. Both of their losses in the regular season were by three points.

One was to Hart in league play, the other was a 38-35 defeat at College of the Canyons to Notre Dame of Sherman Oaks. The Knights outscored Saugus 19-7 in the fourth quarter.

The Centurions can pick up a little revenge at 7:30 p.m. at a solid NDHS team in Sherman Oaks.

Saugus returns Desi Rodriguez, who ran for 96 yards and a touchdown and passed for 156 yards and another two TDs against Notre Dame.

Running back Ryan Zirbel again figures to be a big-time weapon for the Centurions. The senior ran for 141 yards and two touchdowns against Notre Dame last season.

Notre Dame's primary weapon includes receiver James Flynn, who had a season-high six receptions for 183 yards and two touchdowns against the Centurion defense last season. Flynn is also the leading receiver this season, with 11 catches for 278 yards and five touchdowns.

The quarterback throwing to him, Ryan Kasdorf, has 782 yards passing with nine touchdown and just one interception. He has 145 rushing yards.

Tailback Kenny Boggs is also back. He has gained 292 yards on 37 carries with six touchdowns.

Valencia (2-1) vs. Hueneme (0-3)
After upsetting Golden League Champion Palmdale last Friday, the Vikings look to add to their streak when they take on Hueneme High in Oxnard at 7 p.m.

Vikings quarterback Dominick Solley, who has an ankle injury, is week-by-week and is not likely to play in this contest.

But Valencia is still in good hands with sophomore relief quarterback Alex Bishop.

Bishop, who is currently 23-of-38 for 208 yards, has led the Vikings in two straight wins along with help from running back Jordan Thompson and receiver Michael Hernandez.

Junior Brock Vereen had a successful outing against Palmdale.

The wide receiver/defensive back returned two consecutive kickoff returns for touchdowns. Valencia will look to Vereen to have another solid performance.

The Vikings are looking stronger defensively. Valencia's defensive corps is led by Vereen, linebacker Rocky Maldonado and defensive end Spencer Buckley.

Offensively, Hueneme (0-3), will be led by quarterback Joe Reynoso and running back Leonard Baker.


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