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Poly, Valley Christian, Bell in Action Friday : 3 Area Teams Ready for CIF Semifinals

December 05, 1985|Paul McLeod

Three area teams remain in the hunt for their respective CIF titles. The following is a rundown of semifinal action set for Friday. All games begin at 7:30 p.m.

Poly (10-1) vs. Marina (8-3-1) at Cerritos College--Poly nipped Fontana, 10-9, last week, while Marina upset the top seed from the Southern Section Big Five Conference, Bishop Amat, 33-12. Poly's defense, which has allowed fewer than five points a game, held Fontana to 20 yards on the ground. Poly has shut out six opponents this year.

Co-champion Marina is one of three Sunset League teams still in the Big Five playoffs (co-champion Edison meets Westminster in the other Big Five semi). Poly running back Leonard Russell averages 105 yards a game rushing. Marina, which limited Bishop Amat to 65 yards on the ground, also sports a stiff defense, so the result could come down to the kicking game. Poly's Adam Scolaro has booted just three field goals (of 30, 37 and 22 yards) this year, but his 22-yarder last week was the margin of victory over Fontana.

Tehachapi (10-2) at Valley Christian (12-0)--Crusader Coach Mike Wunderley feels his team will be facing "the best competition we've had all year" when it hosts the Warriors. Although Valley Christian has recorded 10 shutouts this season (tying a state record), the Crusaders allowed two touchdowns in their 34-13 Southern Section Inland Conference win over San Jacinto last week. Valley Christian has allowed just 20 points this year.

Wunderley wasn't excited by his team's play last week. "We made mistakes against San Jacinto that have not happened before," he said. He indicated that Tehachapi is a well-balanced team that will exploit those kinds of errors.

Westchester (9-1) at Bell (10-0)--The 2A City Section game is a rematch of a first-round affair last year in which Bell upset the Comets. Bell quarterback Eliad Pacheco, the Eastern League's most valuable player, has thrown for more than 1,200 yards. Kicker Waldir Guerra has made eight field goals in 10 attempts, including four from 42 yards or farther.

Westchester runs a balanced offense behind quarterback Steve Kristy. Running back Derrick Franklin averages 6.8 yards a carry. Wide receiver Dave Brantley has scored 68 points this year and has a 94-yard pass and two punt returns (of 52 and 59 yards) for touchdowns. By comparison, Westchester beat University, 11-0, in regular-season play, while Bell downed University in the opening round of the playoffs, 38-28.

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