May 27, 2024

OC Sports Zone: Community First

Football playoff notes on Mater Dei, Orange, CdM, Segerstrom, Katella and Trabuco

Coach Bruce Rollinson leads his Monarchs into Friday’s semifinals vs. Mission Viejo. (File photo: Fernando M. Donado, For OC Sports Zone)

The CIF football playoff game with the most interest in Orange County is Friday night’s Mater Dei vs. Mission Viejo Division 1 quarterfinal round game at Mission Viejo.

The winner moves on to face the St. John Bosco-Centennial Corona game. We will have updates of the game on our scoreboard Friday night.

Coach Bruce Rollinson’s Mater Dei team is out to repeat as CIF and state champions and the Monarchs should move on in their quest for those crowns.

ORANGE ON THE ROAD FOR SEMIFINALS

Orange’s football team (11-1) will be on the road for its semifinal game with Simi Valley (9-3).

It will be the second road game in a row for the Panthers, who defeated J.W. North 27-7. Look for Orange to advance into the championship game.

Players are advised by their coaches to not look ahead.

But fans certainly can…..Orange would be home for the championship game if it can notch a win on the road, according to Athletic Director Alicia Seevers. Orange has used Segerstrom as its home site this year, but also used Chapman University for its showdown with Segerstrom.

The Orange-Simi Valley winner meets the winner of the Katella vs. Crescenta Valley winner. Crescenta Valley is the top seed.

Orange is looking for its first CIF title since 2017 when the Panthers won the Division 13 title defeating Silver Valley 30-20.

CORONA DEL MAR HAS EYES ON THE BIG PRIZE

Corona del Mar’s football team has been pointing toward a championship in Division 3 all season. In order to do so, the Sea Kings need to defeat Alemany on the road Friday night. La Habra and Grace Brethren play in the other semifinal. A number of people have called CdM the best public school team in Orange County this year and it would be tough to argue that.

Grace Brethren defeated CdM in the Divison 4 finals last year 26-14.

SUNNY HILLS AND TRABUCO HILLS HAVE A REMATCH

Sunny Hills and Trabuco Hills have a rematch on Friday night in the CIF Division 9 semifinals. Sunny Hills won the first game 41-34 in overtime on Sept. 27 at Trabuco Hills.

Trabuco Hills (8-4) has been one of the great turn-around stories in Orange County this year and has been playing really well. Trabuco Hills has won five in a row. Sunny Hills is the top seeded team. This one should go down to the wire again.

KATELLA QB EXCITED ABOUT SEMIFINALS FRIDAY

Katella quarterback Pharell Scorza and his teammates were thrilled after a 22-17 victory over Segerstrom Friday night.

Now they look forward to Friday’s road game against top-seeded Crescenta Valley.

“We’re going against Crescenta Valley; they’re a pretty good team but we go to practice every day and practice every day like it’s our last practice and take it one day at a time and one minute at a time and if we play like we do, I think we will come out on top,” Scorza said.

SEGERSTROM’S FOOTBALL PLAYERS TAKE LOSS HARD

Segerstrom’s football team had high hopes of reaching the semifinals for the second time in school history.

When the Jaguars fell to Katella 22-17 in the quarterfinals, Segerstrom players tried to deal with the defeat at the middle of the field for a lengthy period after the game.

“As a season, we played well and I’m proud of our kids,” said Segerstrom Coach Joseph Tagaloa about 15 minutes after the contest. “They always rise to the occasion and we’ve never backed down from any competition. Our guys seem to play hard and that’s what matters. Wins and losses are going to happen. At the end of the day, we want to be better people. We’re here to build young men and to have good character and to benefit from this game. And this team is a family.

“That’s one of the things we’ve always talked about. Here we are, people are still hugging it out right now. It’s unfortunate the way the season came to an end. But we had a tremendous season and I’m very proud of every single one of our guys.”

OTHER COUNTY TEAMS EYE TRIP TO FINALS

Lots of interest in other match-ups for Orange County squads. San Juan Hills is at Paramount in Division 4, Cypress (12-0) hosts Serrano (12-0) at Western High in Division 6, Newport Harbor is at Highland in Division 9, Marina is at Hemet in Division 11, Esperanza hosts undefeated Inglewood in Divison 13 at Yorba Linda and Loara hosts South Torrance at Glover Stadium.

It should be a fun night and OC Sports Zone will provide updates and coverage after the games.

RELATED: CIF officials rule San Clemente out of football playoffs

–Tim Burt, OC Sports Zone; timburt@ocsportszone.com