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VALLEY / VENTURA COUNTY SPORTS | LEAGUE-BY-LEAGUE CAPSULES
: CITY SECTION

Sunset Six

October 12, 2000|STEVE HENSON

TEAM TO BEAT

Canoga Park. After losing to Birmingham in their opener and gaining a forfeit victory over Monroe, the Hunters have reeled off three consecutive victories on the field. Jeremy Egan is steadily improving at quarterback, Josh Geiger has emerged as a strong running back and the defense is solid. Canoga Park is the only Sunset Six team with a winning record and should face a challenge only from Grant and North Hollywood.

CHALLENGERS

With dangerous running back Perry Clayton, a decent passing game and superior kicker, Carlos Mendez, Grant can score. But the defense has been porous. North Hollywood survived a difficult nonleague schedule and has displayed the ability to score through the air. Defense has been the Huskies' problem too. Poly began the season with high hopes, but the absence of a running game and consistent blocking has kept the Parrots from getting untracked.

THE REST

Verdugo Hills plays good defense but averages only 97 yards a game and has scored four touchdowns all season. Hollywood has a victory and a tie after going 0-10 last season.

STANDINGS

*--*

League Overall School W L T W L T PF PA Canoga Park 0 0 0 4 1 0 97 82 Grant 0 0 0 2 3 0 121 125 Hollywood 0 0 0 1 3 1 60 143 No. Hollywood 0 0 0 1 4 0 96 168 Poly 0 0 0 0 5 0 96 214 Verdugo Hills 0 0 0 0 5 0 28 138

*--*

DATES TO MARK

Oct. 20 Grant vs. Canoga Park

Nov. 3 Canoga Park vs. North Hollywood

Nov. 9 North Hollywood vs. Grant

VALLEY MISSION

TEAM TO BEAT

Kennedy. Sylmar would appear to be the league's top team except for one fact: Kennedy defeated the Spartans twice last season, including a 69-33 shellacking in the playoffs. The Cougars tied Palmdale early but have won believers by beating Taft and Granada Hills the last two weeks. No team plays with more passion than the Cougars, who take their cue from energetic assistant coaches Billy Parra and Dion Lambert. Quarterback Adam Geery has blossomed and the offensive line is taking care of defenses.

CHALLENGERS

Sylmar played a softer nonleague schedule than usual, but begins league play healthy. Although the Spartans rush by committee, John Valdez is a seasoned senior quarterback. The defense, led by linebacker Josh Martin and safety Felipe Samano, might be the best among City teams in the region. San Fernando opened with three victories but was shocked by Birmingham and Taft the last two weeks. The injury-plagued Tigers are capable of beating Kennedy or Sylmar when healthy.

THE REST

Monroe and Reseda have not played up to expectations, but have enough talent to give any of the top three teams a tough game. Monroe's 49-0 victory over Cleveland proves the Vikings have firepower. Reseda has the league's most consistently productive running back, Eddie Robinson. Van Nuys will have a hard time winning a game.

STANDINGS

*--*

League Overall School W L T W L T PF PA Sylmar 0 0 0 5 0 0 187 55 Kennedy 0 0 0 4 0 1 210 130 San Fernando 0 0 0 3 2 0 110 128 Reseda 0 0 0 1 4 0 127 142 *Monroe 0 0 0 1 4 0 81 120 Van Nuys 0 0 0 0 5 0 37 178

*--*

*Monroe has a forfeit loss.

DATES TO MARK

Oct. 20 Kennedy vs. Sylmar

Nov. 3 Sylmar vs. San Fernando

Nov. 9 Kennedy vs. San Fernando

WEST VALLEY

TEAM TO BEAT

Taft. Although Birmingham is the only unbeaten team and Granada Hills is well-balanced, the Toreadors have the most potent passing attack in the region. Transfer quarterback Rick Clausen has adjusted quickly and receivers Steve Smith and Chris Morgan are unparalleled. A small line consistently overachieves. As long as the coaches remember what down it is, Taft should win the title.

CHALLENGERS

Surprising Birmingham has the top-rated defense among area City teams, a balanced offense and big-play skill position players. Granada Hills was rolling at high speed until the wheels fell off during the second half of last week's loss to Kennedy. A victory over Taft on Friday would put the Highlanders back in the driver's seat. Cleveland started strong then faltered under a barrage of injuries.

THE REST

El Camino Real and Chatsworth have gone deep into the 3-A playoffs in recent years but will have difficulty keeping pace. The Conquistadors' offense is finally clicking with three running backs sharing the load and Terrish Weston averaging 36.7 yards per catch. Chatsworth struggled through a difficult nonleague schedule.

STANDINGS

*--*

League Overall School W L T W L T PF PA Birmingham 0 0 0 5 0 0 184 60 Granada Hills 0 0 0 4 1 0 158 60 Taft 0 0 0 4 1 0 150 89 Cleveland 0 0 0 3 2 0 121 176 El Camino Real 0 0 0 2 3 0 95 151 Chatsworth 0 0 0 1 4 0 87 168

*--*

DATES TO MARK

Oct. 13 Granada Hills vs. Taft

Oct. 20 Taft vs. Birmingham

Nov. 3 Birmingham vs. Granada Hills

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