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PREP FOOTBALL '98 / SUNSET LEAGUE

Facts And Figures / Playoff History

September 08, 1998

Edison

Last appearance: 1995.

Record: 22-16-1 in 20 appearances.

Highlights: Four-time champion put on one of the most dominating title-game performances in history by defeating Redlands, 55-0, for 1979 Big Five Conference championship.

Esperanza

Last appearance: 1997 (ninth year in a row).

Record: 33-19-1 in 22 appearances.

Highlights: Has missed playoffs only once since 1975, winning three championships and finishing as runner-up four times. Shared 1992 Division II championship after tying Los Alamitos, 14-14.

Fountain Valley

Last appearance: 1997 (third year in a row).

Record: 26-16 in 18 appearances.

Highlights: Defeated Angelus League powers Servite in 1978 and Bishop Amat in 1988 to win large-school titles.

Huntington Beach

Last appearance: 1993.

Record: 5-6 in six appearances since 1947.

Highlights: Won its lone section title in 1935, defeating Colton in a Minor League playoff.

Los Alamitos

Last appearance: 1997 (14th year in a row).

Record: 28-16-1 in 19 appearances.

Highlights: Fourteen-year streak of consecutive playoff appearances is longest in the county. Won its three championships in successive years, from 1991 to 1993, and had a 14-game playoff unbeaten streak.

Marina

Last appearance: 1992.

Record: 9-9 in nine appearances.

Highlights: Reached the Big Five Conference semifinals four times, the most recent trip ending with a 7-6 loss to Long Beach Poly in 1985.

1997 IN REVIEW

For the third straight year, Esperanza's victory over Los Alamitos in the league opener was the springboard for a third consecutive Sunset title.

The emotional toll on the Griffins, at the time the county's fourth-ranked team, was evident two weeks later when they lost to Marina. Los Alamitos scrambled to finish tied for second with Fountain Valley.

Edison suffered the biggest heartbreak in 1997. Its three losses were to Los Alamitos by three points, Fountain Valley by two, and Los Alamitos by one. They kept Edison out of the playoffs for the second consecutive season.

In the Division I playoffs, Esperanza defeated Mission Viejo for its first playoff victory since joining the Sunset League in 1994. The Aztecs lost in the quarterfinals to Loyola, 16-3. Los Alamitos stopped Fontana, 30-22, in the first round, but lost to Mater Dei in the quarterfinals, 40-23.

Fountain Valley exited in the first round to eventual Division I champion Long Beach Poly, 40-9.

Some of the county's top athletes played in the Sunset League. Los Alamitos receiver Keenan Howry led all county receivers with 72 receptions, and was second in yardage (1,194). Teammate Blair Havens caught 60 passes for 972 yards. Aaron Hill had a big season for Esperanza, with 42 receptions for 691 yards.

Los Alamitos' Zach Blazek led all Sunset quarterbacks with 2,881 yards passing and 23 touchdowns. Esperanza's Grant Wagner, however, was named league MVP after passing for 2,009 yards and 17 touchdowns.

Among Sunset League rushers, Esperanza's Brent Garrison ran for 1,186 yards and four touchdowns. Jamie Smith added 706 yards and 14 touchdowns for the Aztecs. Fountain Valley's Jon Sanders battled through injuries to compile 800 yards and 19 touchdowns.

(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX / INFOGRAPHIC)

League

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Standings W L T Esperanza 5 0 0 Los Alamitos 3 2 0 Fountain Valley 3 2 0 Edison 2 3 0 Marina 1 3 1 Huntington Beach 0 4 1

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Overall

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Standings W L T TP PA Esperanza 9 3 0 288 223 Los Alamitos 9 3 0 413 262 Fountain Valley 7 4 0 312 200 Edison 6 3 1 277 159 Marina 5 4 1 197 202 Huntington Beach 2 7 1 205 280

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Leaders / Statistics include regular-season games only

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PASSING Att Cp TD Yds Blazek, Los Alamitos 254 167 20 2,543 Wagner, Esperanza 216 123 16 1,888 Grady, Edison 193 115 10 1,538 Morris, Fountain Valley 173 91 7 1,467 Lineberger, HBeach 216 110 13 1,336

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RUSHING Att Yds Avg. Pope, Edison 160 1,136 7.1 Garrison, Esperanza 180 1,053 5.9 Mietkiewicz, Marina 128 792 6.2 Sanders, Fountain Valley 88 791 9.0 Van Hoorebeke, HBeach 163 712 4.4

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RECEIVING Att Yds Avg. Howry, Los Alamitos 61 1,003 16.4 Cabrera, Huntington Beach 53 576 10.9 Havens, Los Alamitos 48 889 18.5 Hall, Edison 41 619 15.1 Godfrey, Los Alamitos 40 610 15.3

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SCORING TD FG XP Pts Sanders, Fountain Valley 19 0 0 114 Smith, Esperanza 14 0 2 86 Godfrey, Los Alamitos 13 0 0 78 Kogler, Edison 12 0 2 74 Carter, Fountain Valley 4 3 39 72

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