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Around the Divisions: Disturbance in the polls

Valencia’s win causes shift among top-ranked teams

Posted: October 30, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: October 30, 2012 1:55 a.m.

Valencia's Alex Tapia, left, and Malik Townsend, right, bring down Hart's Connor Wingenroth on Friday at Valencia High.

 

The same two teams have stood atop the CIF-Southern Section Northern Division polls for five straight weeks.

Then Valencia had to go and stir things up.

With a 31-20 win over previous No. 1 Hart on Friday, Valencia moved to its highest ranking of the season at No. 2.

Fittingly, undefeated Palmdale jumps to the top spot in the rankings, while Hart fell to third.

Coming into the week, Hart was ranked fifth in the CIF State Bowl Division II poll for Southern California, meaning it was a potential candidate for state championship semifinal game.

Those rankings are released on Tuesdays.

As for the Northern Division, the rest of the top 10 underwent a few changes too, including slight downgrade for both Canyon and Arroyo Grande, despite both teams winning.

No. 1 Palmdale (9-0); Last Friday: Beat Littlerock 76-16; Last Week’s Ranking: No. 2

The Falcons didn’t struggle at all against Golden League last-place Littlerock on Friday, racing out to a 42-0 lead in the first quarter on the way to a blowout.

Quarterback Jake Dashnaw tossed four touchdowns and ran for another in the game.

With the win, Palmdale clinched at least a share of the Golden League title and it can make it an outright championship while also capping off an undefeated regular season with a win over 5-4 Eastside on Friday.

No. 2 Valencia (6-3); Last Friday: Beat Hart 31-20; LWR: No. 3

After an 0-2 start to the season, the Vikings are back on top of the Foothill standings following a win over Hart in a battle of the league’s top teams.

Stone Jackson ran for three touchdowns on just five carries in the game and the Valencia defense limited a Hart offense that came into the day averaging more than 42 points per game.

Now, only 0-9 Golden Valley on Friday stands between Valencia and a fourth straight league crown.

No. 3 Hart (7-2); Last Friday: Lost to Valencia 31-20; LWR: No. 1

Hart had been on cruise control ever since its season-opening loss to Tesoro on Aug. 31.

Since then, the Indians had beaten seven straight teams by 22 points or more.

On Friday, Hart was hit in the mouth by two interceptions and four sacks by the Valencia defense.

Connor Wingenroth scored twice for Hart and ran for 106 yards while wide receiver Trent Irwin caught seven passes for 122 yards.

Hart faces Canyon on Friday in a duel for at least second place in league.

No. 4 Palos Verdes (6-3); Last Friday: Beat Redondo Union 21-7; LWR: No. 4

The Sea Kings extended their winning streak to six games by beating Redondo Union.

In the process, Palos Verdes staked claim to a share of the Bay League championship.

Palos Verdes running back Matt Lopes went for 218 rushing yards and a touchdown on 39 carries against Redondo Union, which was unbeaten in league play before Friday.

With the score tied 7-7 at halftime, the Sea Kings scored twice in the second half to close it out.

Palos Verdes can win the Bay League with a victory on Friday over Palos Verdes Peninsula.

No. 5 St. Joseph (7-2); Last Friday: Beat Pioneer Valley 49-16; LWR: No. 6

A Pac-7 League-clinching victory was enough to entice the voters to put St. Joseph ahead of league foe Arroyo Grande.

On Friday, the Knights finished off their league schedule with an easy win over Pioneer Valley.

Senior running back Scotty Cusack scored five touchdowns for St. Joseph against Pioneer Valley, three on the ground and two through the air.

St. Joseph wraps up its regular season with a non-league game against West High of Bakersfield on Friday.

No. 6 Mira Costa (6-3); Last Friday: Beat Leuzinger 49-0; LWR: No. 7

Mira Costa compiled 410 rushing yards in a shutout defeat over Leuzinger on Friday with running back Khalil McClain’s 120 yards on just six carries leading the way.

Both Mira Costa and Redondo Union trail Palos Verdes by a game in the Bay League at 3-1.

The Mustangs will have a chance to play for second place on Friday when they take on Redondo Union.

No. 7 Arroyo Grande (7-2); Last Friday: Beat Paso Robles 20-13; LWR: No. 5

A narrow overtime win against Paso Robles wasn’t enough for the Eagles to retain a top five spot in the polls this week.

Despite the win, the Eagles fell two spots.

Arroyo Grande sacked Paso Robles three times and forced two turnovers, but it took a Matt Willkomm 9-yard scoring run in overtime to give Arroyo the win.

Willkomm also threw two touchdowns in a 17-for-28, 178-yard performance under center.

The Eagles face San Luis Obispo on Friday. The winner of that game will share a Pac-7 title with St. Joseph.

No. 8 Quartz Hill (6-3); Last Friday: Beat Eastside 42-15; LWR: Not ranked

Quartz Hill jumped into second place in the Golden League this week and jumped onto the top 10 rankings as a result.

The Rebels rode on the shoulders of running back Osirius Burke, who ran for 232 yards and three touchdowns on Friday.

Quartz Hill can maintain the No. 2 spot in the Golden League with a win over Antelope Valley on Friday.

No. 9 Canyon (6-2-1); Last Friday: Beat West Ranch 41-34; LWR: No. 8

Though the Cowboys bounced back from the previous week’s loss to beat West Ranch, they fell back a spot in the rankings.

Drew Wolitarsky found the end zone three times in Friday’s game, once via a 75-yard kickoff return and the other two on passing plays from Cade Apsay.

He had eight catches for 125 yards to put him over the 1,000-yard receiving mark this season. He now has 1,019 yards on 69 grabs.

Canyon scored steadily in the game, but was never able to pull ahead by a comfortable margin.

The Cowboys can try to take at least second place in the Foothill with a win over rival Hart on Friday.

No. 10 San Luis Obispo; Last Friday: Beat Atascadero 31-14; LWR: NR

A fourth straight win earned the Tigers a spot on the division’s top 10.

San Luis Obispo’s win put it in position to win a share of the Pac-7 League title, but it will have to do so with a win over fellow second-place Arroyo Grande on Friday.

Some information for this story was gathered from Maxpreps.com, The Los Angeles Daily News, The Daily Breeze, The Santa Maria Times and avnewstodayonline.com

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