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PREP EXTRA / A weekly look at the high school sports
scene in the Southland | City Section Report

Belmont Beginning Annual Playoff Run

October 08, 1998|GARY KLEIN and MICHAEL LAZARUS

Belmont High does not rank among the traditional football powers in the City Section, but the Sentinels appear formidable enough to qualify for their 10th consecutive playoff appearance.

And possibly more.

Senior tailback Sal Villa and junior quarterback Oscar Perez have led Belmont to consecutive victories over Gardena and Wilson after losses to Fremont and Inglewood.

Last week's 21-7 Northern Conference victory over Wilson qualifies the Sentinels as a contender for their first conference title since 1993.

Villa rushed for 123 yards in 24 carries and scored a touchdown against the Mules. Perez completed eight of 17 passes for 127 yards and also ran for a touchdown.

Senior linebacker Arial Cadenas tied a school record with 13 tackles and defensive back Alex Herrera returned an interception 58 yards for a touchdown.

"Our kids may lack in background in terms of football experience, but they have heart for the game and they're tough," said Rob Levy, in his 13th season as Sentinel coach.

Belmont plays Eagle Rock Friday and meets Northern Conference power Franklin on Oct. 16.

*

After nearly 1 1/2 seasons of frustration, the outlook is brightening for the Verdugo Hills football team.

The Dons scored their first points of the season--and won for the first time since 1996--in a 21-14 victory over Marshall last week.

On Friday, Verdugo Hills will play at home under the lights for the first time when the Dons play Lincoln at 7 p.m.

School officials are planning a short ceremony between the frosh-soph and varsity games and a possible fireworks show at halftime.

"We're a small community here, so we're going to keep it a small ceremony," Verdugo Hills Principal Gary Turner said. "But we do want to thank all the people who have helped us bring something to the community."

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