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Crenshaw had a great run in the City Section, winning back-to-back City titles by crushing their opponents, but it all came to an end at San Pedro. Photo by Jason Lewis Dorsey, Narbonne, Carson, San Pedro, and Culver City advance to semifinalsBy Jason LewisSentinel Sports Editor
Crenshaw won back-to-back City championships in dominating fashion, but on Friday night at San Pedro, they were dominated. San Pedro has always been a tough team that plays with a lot of grit, and that is what they did on the defensive side of the ball, limiting Crenshaw to only one first quarter touchdown. Outside of that lone scoring drive for Crenshaw, they struggled to move the ball all night. They tied the game at seven all in the first quarter, but they quickly found themselves down 28-7 by halftime. Crenshaw is not used to playing from behind. They had to ditch their running game and put the ball in the air, which did not produce the results that they were hoping for. On the offensive side of the ball, San Pedro did what they do best, which is run the ball.
Quarterback Kenny Potter looked like Tim Tebow as he ran a read option play. When he turned the corner of the defense, there was only one Crenshaw defender that stood in his way of an 81-yard touchdown run. That Crenshaw defender missed a routine open field tackle and Potter was gone. Moments later, Potter hit wide receiver Keaton Accetta down field. Two Crenshaw defenders were in position to make an easy open field tackle, but after a couple of juke moves by Accetta, both Crenshaw defenders were on the ground after trying to tackle the air. Accetta finished off the play for a 72-yard touchdown catch. San Pedro seemed to take their foot off the gas in the second half, only producing a field goal while running the ball the entire time, and they took home a 31-7 victory. San Pedro’s weak non-league schedule had people doubting them, but after victories over Carson, Narbonne, and now Crenshaw, all teams who have either won or been to the City championship game over the past few years, San Pedro is certainly a legit team. But if they do go on to win the City title, that weak non-league schedule may keep them out of the State Bowl game. But before they can think about that, San Pedro has to worry about a rematch with Carson this coming Friday, and Dorsey and Narbonne have also advanced to the semifinal round. Carson traveled to Venice for a game that had high scoring written all over it, and that’s just what both teams produced. Carson raced out to a 34-7 halftime lead, and it looked like they were going to embarrass Venice, but Venice came back in the second half. But the hole that they dug themselves into was too deep, and they fell 47-34.Carson running back Roger Jones was the star of the night as he rushed for 276 yards and four touchdowns on only 21 carries. After racking up 155 yards and three touchdowns in the first half, it looked like he was going to catch a long break in the second half. But with Venice scoring at will, Rogers had to re-enter the game. And he continued running all over Venice. Carson has the best wide receiver in the City in USC commit Darreus Rogers, but with the running game working so good, Carson only attempted three passes all night. They rushed for 457 yards on 47 attempts. Carson will look to avenge their 21-0 loss against San Pedro on Friday. On the other side of the bracket, Dorsey and Narbonne did not struggle at all in their games. Dorsey knocked off Birmingham 45-15, and Narbonne defeated West Adams 59-20. Dorsey may have a chip on their shoulders heading into Narbonne, because many believed that it should have been Dorsey with the No. 2 seed, not Narbonne. Both teams played a tough non-league schedule, and Dorsey finished one game better. Both teams played in a tough league, and again, Dorsey finished one game better. Dorsey finished the regular season with a 9-1 record, while Narbonne was 7-3. Any way it is sliced, these are two of the best teams in the City year-in year-out, and either of these teams can go all the way and win the City title. Dorsey has done it with a bone-crushing defense, while Narbonne’s offense can score all night running and passing. That’s where this game will be won. It’s an unstoppable force meeting an immoveable object. Dorsey’s offense and Narbonne’s defense have been suspect at times this season, but if one of those units has a good game, that team can have a big advantage in the game. It is interesting that three Marine League teams were awarded five of the top spots in the playoffs, which caused a bit of a stir. But seeing that three of them are in the semifinal round, the seeding looks like it was correct. In the Southern Section, Culver City is the only local team to advance. They have really turned their season around after a few tough losses that most people did not see coming during the regular season. After surprising Gardena Serra in the opening round of the playoffs, Culver City lit up Righetti 51-28, and they are now only one game from playing for the Division IV championship. Culver City will face Santa Monica, who defeated them 17-14 in league play earlier this season. Culver City was picked to win the league, but after a surprising loss to Inglewood, they stumbled again against Santa Monica, and barely made it into the playoffs. Now they look like they are back on track.Quarterfinal resultsCity Section Division ISan Pedro 31, Crenshaw 7Carson 47, Venice 34Dorsey 45, Birmingham 15Narbonne 59, West Adams 20Division IISouth East 42, Fremont 19Canoga Park 27, Bell 24 (2OT)Granada Hills 44, Van Nuys 22Los Angeles Marshall 49, Lincoln 10Southern SectionDivision ISanta Margarita 49, Long Beach Poly 16Division IVCulver City 51, Righetti 28Division XLompoc 28, Compton Centennial 15Semifinal ScheduleCity SectionDivision INo. 5 Carson (7-5) at No. 1 San Pedro (12-0)No. 3 Dorsey (11-1) at No. 2 Narbonne (9-3)Division IINo. 5 Canoga Park (8-4) at No. 1 South East (11-1)No. 3 Granada Hills (7-5) at No. 2 Marshall (10-2) (site tbd) Southern SectionDivision IVCulver City (9-3) at Santa Monica (11-1)
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