Culver City (5-0, 2-0 in the Ocean League) may have moved from the category of a surprise team to that of a power with last week's 41-7 trouncing of North Torrance.
Culver Coach Lou Lichtl said last week that the North Torrance game would be the Centaurs' first real test, and they passed with flying colors.
Quarterback Troy Dunlap led the Centaurs with three touchdown passes as well as a 40-yard scoring run. One of his touchdown passes was to Greg Hooks and covered 72 yards.
South Torrance (2-3, 2-0) will play host to Culver at 7:30 p.m. Friday. The Spartans' non-conference losses were by narrow margins to Torrance, Palos Verdes and Bishop Montgomery, and they have won conference games, also by narrow margins, with Redondo Beach and Mira Costa.
Venice at Fairfax
Venice (4-0 overall, 1-0 in the Coastal Conference) also passed the test of beating a good team with last week's 26-0 victory over Hamilton.
Al Dellinger, Venice co-head coach with Tony Chretin, said that Hamilton "was the best team we have played so far." However, he said he expects Fairfax, which will play host to the Gondoliers at 3 p.m. Friday, to be better than Hamilton.
The Gondoliers seem to have one of those defenses that bends but doesn't break. Last week they gave up more than 140 yards to Hamilton tailback Jay Fields but kept him out of the end zone. "If we give up as much yardage to (Fairfax's Mario) Mattison as we did to Fields, he will run wild," Dellinger said.
In a Coastal Conference opener last week, winless University held Mattison to less than 100 yards last week and came away with a surprising 7-7 tie. Fairfax is 1-1-1 overall.
Beverly Hills at Leuzinger
After losing twice and winning only once in its preseason schedule, Beverly Hills (3-2 overall, 2-0 in the Bay League) has played very well in its league contests. In a league opener, the Normans upset Rolling Hills, 21-14, and last week romped over winless Inglewood, 49-12.
Five of the eight Bay League teams are ranked among the top 10 in Division II in this week's CIF-Southern Section sportswriters' poll. Hawthorne is third, Leuzinger fourth, Santa Monica eighth and Rolling Hills ninth.
Bill Stansbury, Beverly Hills co-head coach with Dick Billingsley, said that based on comparative scores, his players think "they can play with (Leuzinger). It should be a close, competitive game." Last week's game between Leuzinger (4-0-1, 1-0-1) and Rolling Hills ended in a 16-16 tie. Earlier, Leuzinger shut out Inglewood, 40-0.
Stansbury said that Leuzinger, which will entertain the Normans at 7:30 p.m. Friday, has outstanding athletes in quarterback Zak Odom, offensive tackle Jim Justice and running back B-jon Sample.
Against Inglewood, Norman running back Greg Holmes rushed for 110 yards and three touchdowns, and quarterback Robby Welles threw two touchdown passes to wide receiver John Song.
Santa Monica at Hawthorne
Santa Monica (3-1 overall, 1-1 in the Bay League) has been playing without top tailback Mark Harper, sidelined with an ankle injury. But the Vikings had no trouble moving the ball against Palos Verdes last week--only with keeping the Sea Kings from moving it.
The Vikings got out to a 15-0 lead in the first quarter but then let Palos Verdes get right back into the game, surrendering a 93-yard kickoff return to Blake Anderson and then letting the Sea Kings recover an on-sides kickoff. Santa Monica led, 34-13, in the fourth quarter but wound up losing, 35-34.
Hawthorne (5-0, 2-0) got a scare last week, edging Torrance, 13-12, after the Tartars failed on a two-point conversion in the last 11 seconds. The Cougars defeated Palos Verdes, 20-0, in a league opener.
Santa Monica will visit Hawthorne at 7:30 p.m. Friday.