The Southern California sports scene was abuzz the last two weeks, and it wasn’t so much the Lakers dominating the Western Conference nor the Dodgers solid start to spring training. It was the official return of high school football, and what a return it was, especially for Maranatha High School.
The Minutemen, coached by former NFL standout LaVar Arrington, opened their season at home with a 46-7 rout over Olympic League opponent La Habra Whittier Christian last Friday.
Tobey Schmidt, who transferred from high school sports powerhouse Mater Dei of Santa Ana, turned in a stellar debut performance. The junior quarterback completed 28 of 37 passes for 410 yards and four touchdowns and rushed for two scores. All four of his passing touchdowns were to speedy sophomore receiver Derek Ganter Jr.
Maranatha (1-0 overall record) will host Heritage Christian of Northridge in a league contest on Friday, March 26, at 2:30 p.m. The Warriors (1-1 overall) are coming off a 24-19 victory over Sun Valley Village Christian.
Much has changed in the area since 2000, with local football programs having their ups and downs and coaches on the move. The sport of football and its players have certainly evolved in the past two decades, but there remains one constant in St. Francis High School football.
The Golden Knights are a consistent power in the football world, with 18 CIF Southern Section playoff appearances in the last 19 years — a remarkable feat for Jim Bonds, who is entering his 20th season as St. Francis’ head coach.
“A few people had asked me about how many years, and I had to go back and do the math,” he said. “I saw that it’s going to be 20. I can’t believe it.”
That kind of loyalty to one school is rare nowadays, and Principal Tom Moran is glad Bonds chose St. Francis in 2000.
“It’s remarkable,” Moran said. “I’m sure he has had opportunities and will continue to have them. We’re very blessed he’s decided to make St. Francis his home.” Continue reading “Knights’ Tale: Bonds Marks 2 Decades as Head Coach”
The St. Francis High School varsity boys’ lacrosse team suffered two consecutive Mission League losses since last Saturday, including a 15-4 defeat to first-place Los Angeles Loyola. However, head coach Jared Little is entering the league tournament with plenty of optimism.
“In the past, we would just fold against Loyola,” said Little, who is in his third season with the Golden Knights. “We lost to them 18-2 in years past, and this is a team that has won the regional title three years in a row. We still ended up losing, which is disappointing, but we had opportunities. We were just not finishing, and that’s a sign of a young team. They will learn eventually.” Continue reading “St. Francis Concludes Memorable Regular Season, Ready for League Tourney”
The St. Francis varsity football team came away with a 17-13 victory in a back-and-forth affair against visiting Saugus last Friday.
The Golden Knights (2-2 overall record) found themselves trailing 7-0 in the first quarter following two turnovers, including a controversial fumble recovery that was ruled a lateral by the officiating crew.
Senior quarterback Darius Perrantes, who completed 10 of 26 for 152 yards, was held scoreless until the 10:27 mark in the second quarter when kicker Jake Smith put the home squad on the board with a 38-yard field goal.
St. Francis got into a rhythm offensively and took a 10-7 lead following a 2-yard touchdown run from Max Garrison with 4:04 remaining in the second quarter. Continue reading “St. Francis Edges Saugus, 17-13”
During the second half, the St. Francis High School student section loudly sang “Sweet Caroline,” A fitting song because Golden Knights football never seemed so good as the varsity team cruised to a 48-21 victory over visiting Mira Costa of Manhattan Beach last week.
In the first half, new quarterback Darius Perrantes, a junior transfer from Encino Crespi, initially started off slow but everything started to click after his first touchdown. Near the end of the first quarter, senior Greg Dulcich broke away from the Mira Costa corner, and Perrantes completed a 38-yard touchdown pass, and there was no looking back for the St. Francis offense.
The Mustangs (0-1 overall) quickly responded with a touchdown pass of their own, and it seemed as if both teams were evenly matched.
On the ensuing drive, Perrantes completed another touchdown pass to Dulcich and later connected with Isaac Cordova for a 64-yard touchdown.
The Mustangs didn’t give up and kept the game within reach after a touchdown midway through the second quarter, cutting St. Francis lead to 21-14 at the half. Continue reading “Perrantes Leads St. Francis to Victory in Season Opener”