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Big Games

Pasadena vs. Diamond Bar

September 26, 1985|MITCH POLIN

Will this be the week that Diamond Bar's 16-game winning streak comes to an end? The Brahmas, who have struggled to two straight non-league victories, figure to receive a tough test when they host Pasadena at 1 p.m. Saturday. Pasadena (1-1), a perennial CIF Coastal Conference power, is coming off a 24-6 loss to St. Francis, a perennial Big 5 Conference playoff team. But the Bulldogs, who reached the Coastal Conference semifinals last year, have outstanding speed in their backfield with running back W. C. Morrison and quarterback Ray Murphy and a fast defense. Diamond Bar (2-0) has looked strong defensively in victories over Nogales (14-9) and La Serna (10-0), but the offense has not resembled the team that scored more than 600 points last season and waltzed to the CIF Southeastern Conference title. However, the Brahmas have one of the best running backs in the San Gabriel Valley in senior Kraig Washington and a solid receiver in senior Larry Vladic. The defense is led by back Troy Porter.

Ganesha vs. Fontana

On the surface, this non-league game at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Fontana may appear to be one of the biggest mismatches of the year. But don't be surprised if it turns out to be close. Granted, Fontana (2-0) is a legitimate CIF Big 5 Conference powerhouse as its easy wins over Garey (34-0) and Ocean View (38-0) attest. However, Ganesha may be better than both of those teams. The Giants are 1-1 after beating Duarte (22-16) and falling to defending Eastern Conference champion Claremont (24-15) in a game that was close most of the way. To stay close to Fontana, ranked No. 2 by The Times, Ganesha will have to neutralize the big Fontana offensive line, which features tackle Nigel Clay (6-4, 240) and guard Ray Wood (6-3, 230). They have helped create gaping holes for tailback John Kidd, who rushed for 130 yards in 14 carries against Ocean View. Ganesha has a strong rushing attack led by Terrell Thompson, who ran for 109 yards and two touchdowns in only nine carries against Claremont. Ganesha also has big linemen, including junior Antonio Johnson (6-4, 255).

Los Altos vs. Monrovia

Los Altos Coach Dwayne DeSpain may be feeling snakebit. That can happen when four of your best players go down with injuries. With the preseason injury of running back and linebacker Jim Jastrab (broken ankle) and injuries to quarterback Mark Smith (strained neck ligaments), tight end Will Harris (hyperextended knee) and running back Garo Sirinian (broken collarbone) last week, the Conquerors (1-1) may be limping into their non-league game against Monrovia (1-1) at 7:30 p.m. Friday in Hacienda Heights. With Smith's injury, junior quarterback Darren DeSpain--the coach's son--probably will start. Los Altos, which suffered one of its worst defeats in recent years last week to powerful Bishop Amat (33-6), will be facing an improving Monrovia team that beat Duarte (20-14) last week. Monrovia has size, led by center Mike Bender (6-4, 240), and an all-around player in Ervie Barnes, who ran for two touchdowns and intercepted two passes against Duarte.

Blair vs. Hoover

Blair does not have a lot of experience or depth, but the Vikings have the front-line players and speed to cause problems for undefeated Hoover (2-0) at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Pasadena City College. The Vikings (1-1), who lost to Culver City (17-14) last week, are led by an outstanding backfield of quarterback Kenny Williams and running backs Vernon Bennett and Brian Gipson and an offensive line that includes center Joe Conway (5-11, 235). Hoover, with 17 starters from last year, has a high-powered option offense led by running back Al Roberson, quarterback/defensive back John Alaimo and wide receiver/place-kicker Tom Konjoyan. Roberson rushed for 180 yards in 15 carries and Alaimo ran for three touchdowns in last week's 49-7 victory over South Pasadena.

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