Bosco wins ninth straight
The St. John Bosco Braves were looking for a berth to the Pac-5 Division title game.
However, rival Long Beach Poly, the same team that beat them, 13-10, in the 2012 regional finals, stood in their way.
This time, Bosco made sure there was a different ending. They beat Poly, 33-21, to make it to their second straight Pac-5 title game.
Poly did not go down without a fight. They led as late as the end of the third quarter, with the score 21-20. But the Braves shut them down in the fourth quarter, holding them scoreless.
In the first half, the scoring went back and forth. Poly jumped out to an early 7-0 lead with a 54-yard pass by quarterback Josh Love to Johnnie Rucker. Another pass by Love to Jackie Jones brought the game to 14-7 at the start of the second quarter.
Braves’ quarterback Josh Rosen came right back, leading a scoring drive capped off by a seven-yard touchdown pass to Jared Harrell. A missed extra point kept the Braves behind, 14-13.
With about three minutes to go in the half, Braves’ defensive back Mykal Tolliver returned an interception for a 35-yard touchdown to put Bosco up at halftime, 20-14.
Long Beach Poly regained the lead late in the third quarter, making it 21-20. This would be the last time Poly saw the endzone.
Bosco shut Poly down in the fourth quarter, while eventually wearing them down on the offensive side. Josh Rosen threw for another touchdown, this time a 21-yard strike to wide receiver Joey Chenoweth.
Running back Sean McGrew punched their tickets to the championship game with a 21-yard touchdown run with 1:43 remaining.
McGrew finished the game with 149 yards and a score. Clifford Simms also contributed in the running game, with 44 yards and a touchdown.
This Saturday, the St. John Bosco Braves take on Corona Centennial on Saturday at Angel Stadium. Centennial boasts an 11-2 record.
Bishop Amat gambles and loses
Bishop Amat lost a nail-biter to Corona Centennial, 38-37. A gutsy call to go for two sealed the deal for Amat.
Despite a 17-point first half deficit, Amat quarterback Ryder Ruiz got the Lancers back on track with a nine-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Vaughns to cut into the lead, 23-17.
However, Centennial came right back on the next possession with a 73-yard touchdown pass by Nate Ketteringham to Javon McKinley, making the score 30-17. McKinley could not be contained by Amat’s defense, finishing the game with 282 yards and two touchdowns.
But the score tightened with Ruiz’s 89-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Arconado. That strike made the score 30-24.
A special teams error led to an easy score for Centennial, going up 38-24.
Down by 14 with five-minutes to go, Amat faced a fourth-and-10. Ryder Ruiz found Tyler Vaughns for a 52-yard reception. A few plays later, Ruiz kept the ball and scored from three yards out to cut into Centennial’s lead with 3:29 remaining.
Their season looked lost when Centennial drove the length of the field and was sitting at the one-yard line with a minute to go. However, a fumble by Centennial’s running back Sammonte Bonner breathed new life into their season.
Ruiz orchestrated a five-play, 97-yard drive, finishing it off with a 42-yard touchdown pass to Arconado, bringing the score to 38-37, with 32 seconds to go.
Amat could have kicked the extra point, tied the game, and, barring any miraculous play, forced overtime.
But Coach Steve Hagerty had a different strategy: all or nothing.
Amat went for the two-point conversion. They sent running back Christian Wiley to run the ball through the middle. Wiley’s efforts turned up inches short.
Amat’s onside kick was unsuccessful, as it went out of bounds. Centennial knelt the ball to hold on to a 38-37 victory.
Amat finishes the season 9-4, having their seven-game winning streak end.