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NEWS AND NOTES FROM PRESS ROW: Gahr, Valley Christian football squads get set for tough quarterfinal games

By Loren Kopff
@LorenKopff on Twitter


Round two, a.k.a. the quarterfinals, of the California Interscholastic Federation-Southern Section playoffs begins tonight with a pair of area teams facing tougher challenges on their quest for a divisional championship. Gahr High, the third place representative from the San Gabriel Valley League, is seeking its first trip to the semifinals since 2007 while three-time Olympic League champion Valley Christian High is looking to win a second straight divisional crown.


# 4 Antelope Valley High (9-2) @ #5 Valley Christian (9-2)-The Crusaders are in for a battle with the tri-Golden League champs. Coming off a 28-13 win over Notre Dame/Riverside High last Friday in which the offense produced just over 200 yards, V.C. takes on a squad very similar to itself. The Crusaders are a scoring juggernaut, piling up 478 points while the defense has allowed 203 points. Senior running back Gianni Hurd leads the ground game with 1,237 yards and 16 touchdowns. Senior quarterback Isaac Joseph has tossed 28 touchdowns and only three interceptions.

The Antelopes have scored 402 points while giving up 152 points. Quarterback Caden Hinton has thrown for 2,073 yards and 20 touchdowns while Jermaine Marshall has rushed for 1,184 yards and 17 touchdowns. Devon Williams is Hinton’s top target, throwing to him 56 times for 990 yards with 11 touchdowns.

The survivor of this game takes on the victor of the Kaiser High-Rio Mesa High contest.


#2 Dos Pueblos High (10-1) @ #7 Gahr (8-3)-The Gladiators rallied for a 31-28 win at Santa Fe High last Friday for the school’s first playoff win since that 2007 semifinal season. The heart and soul for Gahr is junior Micah Bernard, who has rushed for over 2,300 yards and 25 touchdowns. It goes to say as Bernard goes, so do the Gladiators.

Dos Pueblos makes the two-plus hour drive from Goleta as Channel League champions. The Chargers are on a 10-game winning streak and their only loss was by three points to San Juan Hills High. If Gahr is a one-man show in Bernard, then Dos Pueblos has its tandem of Eric Lopez (98 carries, 628 yards, 11 touchdowns) and quarterback Jake Ramirez (99 carries, 637 yards, eight touchdowns). Lopez picked up 157 yards in his team’s first round playoff win against Brentwood High.

Gahr’s offense has scored 355 points while the Chargers have yielded 115 points, which means something will have to give. Dos Pueblos has scored 31 points in all 10 of its wins. The winner of this game faces the winner of the Pacifica High-Valley View High game.


A trio of Cerritos High softball players signed letter of intents last Wednesday to play collegiate ball. Senior first baseman Kiarra Crockett-Pope will be taking her talents to California State University, Northridge, junior outfielder Kristina Mendez has signed to play at El Paso Community College and senior pitcher Jennifer Morinishi is headed to nearby Biola University. All three helped the Lady Dons to a 20-6 record last spring and a Suburban League title.

At Gahr, senior left-handed pitcher Darius Garcia signed to play at the University of California, Irvine and senior shortstop Michael Perez inked his signature to play at the University of California, Los Angeles.


From left to right: Cerritos High softball players Kiarra Crockett-Pope, Kristina Mendez and Jennifer Morinishi recently signed letter of intents to play college softball.

From left to right: Cerritos High softball players Kiarra Crockett-Pope, Kristina Mendez and Jennifer Morinishi recently signed letter of intents to play college softball.