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Eric Sondheimer / ON HIGH SCHOOLS

Mission Viejo-El Toro game 'could be an old-fashion shootout'

The matchup, which will decide the South Coast League title, pits an El Toro team that is averaging 47.2 points a game against a Mission Viejo team that is averaging 51.5 points.

October 28, 2012|Eric Sondheimer
  • Senior quarterback Conner Manning has led El Toro to an average of 47.2 points per game.
Senior quarterback Conner Manning has led El Toro to an average of 47.2 points… (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles…)

High school football fans who enjoy lots of scoring should make plans to head out to Mission Viejo High on Friday night for a regular-season finale that doesn't get much better than the Diablos (9-0) taking on Lake Forest El Toro (9-0) to decide the South Coast League title.

Asked how many points will be needed to win, El Toro Coach Rob Frith said, "Oh my gosh — it could be a lot."

El Toro, led by senior quarterback Conner Manning, is averaging 47.2 points a game, with a high of 77. Mission Viejo, led by junior quarterback Ian Fieber, is averaging 51.4 points with a high game of 84.

"It could be an old-fashion shootout," Frith said. "They have the ability to score points like we do."

It's remarkable that in the 10th week of the season, two teams that few expected to be unbeaten would be playing each other. Mission Viejo had to replace its entire starting offensive unit. That was supposed to result in a loss or two this season. However, the Diablos picked up three top transfers from Santa Margarita and Fieber, a transfer from Orange Lutheran, has been even better than advertised. Now they could be in position to claim the No. 1 or 2 seeding in the Pac-5 playoffs with a win.

El Toro, loaded with players who have known each other since elementary school, is one of those rare neighborhood success stories in which players come together to form a once-in-a-lifetime team in their senior year.

Manning, a Utah commit with 38 touchdown passes and 3,525 yards passing, keeps raising his level of play and has enabled the Chargers to transition successfully from the Sea View League to the tougher South Coast League.

El Toro fans will be dressing in white. Mission Viejo fans will be dressing in red. It has all the makings of a classic.

"Win, lose or draw, I'm confident our guys are going to fight until the last play," Frith said.

Private school power

Now you understand why Marmonte League schools didn't want to add private-school powers Ventura St. Bonaventure and Westlake Village Westlake to their league. St. Bonaventure (8-1) will play at Oaks Christian (8-1) on Friday to decide the league championship. The remaining eight public schools will face off and probably debate how to get rid of St. Bonaventure and Oaks Christian.

The other Marmonte final games: Westlake at Moorpark, Newbury Park at Thousand Oaks, Royal at Agoura, Simi Valley at Calabasas.

Big-play weapon

Receiver Mike Jurado of North Torrance caught a 90-yard touchdown pass and ran back a kickoff 98 yards for a touchdown in his team's 36-28 victory over South Torrance. He finished with six receptions for 159 yards.

Kicking record

Kicker Bret Miller of San Clemente has set a Southern Section record by making 107 consecutive conversion kicks, breaking the mark of 104 set by John McGrory of Santa Margarita last season.

Here comes Carson

The City Section playoff pairings will be announced Saturday, and in Division I, lots of teams will be hoping to avoid drawing Carson (3-6) in the first round.

In its last three games, Carson has beaten San Pedro, 28-0; Washington, 53-0, and Gardena, 35-7.

Remember, the Colts started 0-6 after facing Long Beach Poly, Fresno Edison, Santa Ana Mater Dei, Santa Margarita, Corona Centennial and Narbonne.

Twitter: @LATSondheimer

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