John Brandi 9 p.m., Sept. 17
Game of the Week
Point Loma (7-2, 3-0) at No. 9 Madison (8-1, 3-0) Friday 6:30 p.m.
For the second straight season, Madison and Point Loma will end the regular season with a winner-take-all finale that will crown a Western League champion. Ninth-ranked Madison has won seven in a row since an early season loss at Valhalla, and the talented Warhawks are seeking a sixth consecutive league crown. Led by the Arizona-bound senior duo of running back Pierre Cormier (1,300 yards, 14 TDs) and receiver Lee Walker (25 receptions, 401 yards, 9 TDs) along with sophomore quarterback Kareem Coles (1,065 yards passing, 658 rushing), Madison’s offense is averaging nearly 40 points per game. Point Loma won six straight since a 1-2 start and its three league victories have come by an average of 29 points. On both sides of the ball the Pointers get their big plays from running back/defensive back Jamal Agnew, a fast, hard-hitting senior. Point Loma’s misdirection-based Wing-T attack features six players with at least 20 carries, highlighted by junior running back D.J. Lacy (461 yards, 6 TDs) and senior running back Johnny Maes (355 yards, 3 TDs). Last season these two teams tied 13-13 to split the Western crown, a game recorded as a tie even though Madison won in an overtime period to determine playoff seeding that was played 15 minutes after regulation.
Best of the Rest
Tri-City Christian (7-1, 4-0) vs. Army-Navy (9-0, 4-0) Friday 7 p.m. at Carlsbad High
Army-Navy is the lesser known of the section’s remaining unbeatens, and has gone about perfection in dominant fashion. The Warriors’ victories have come by an average of 31 points, and their nine wins include forfeit victories over Calvin Christian and San Diego Jewish Academy. Seniors Joe Naotaola (RB/DL), Mike Luque (RB/DB), and Sam Harlib (WR/FS) led Army-Navy, who is enjoying its first winning season since 2008. Tri-City Christian has won the last two Pacific League titles, and hasn’t lost in league play since 2009. A pair of two-way stars lead the Eagles – senior Nathan Medrano (WR/DB) and junior Benjamin Giese (RB/LB). This winner-take-all Pacific League contest also comes with a guaranteed home game in the first round of the Division V playoffs.
No. 8 St. Augustine (7-2, 2-1) at Lincoln (6-3, 2-1) Friday 6:30 p.m.
Though Cathedral Catholic wrapped up the Eastern League crown last week, this second-place battle is important for both St. Augustine and Lincoln, who each lost to the Dons by an identical eight-point margin and both come into this matchup with four wins in their last five games. Eighth-ranked St. Augustine bounced back from its Holy Bowl loss last week with a 49-14 win over Scripps Ranch. The freshman running back duo of Elijah Preston and Francoise Sims II have led the Saints after senior Tyler Herburger went down, keeping the team in the discussion for the top seed in Division IV. Lincoln could earn a first round bye in Division III with a victory, and the Hornets are led by Oregon-bound twin siblings Tyree and Tyrell Robinson, a dynamic duo that makes its presence felt on both sides of the ball. Since Lincoln re-opened, St. Augustine leads this series 4-2 including a 41-7 win last season.
Santa Fe Christian (6-3, 4-0) at Francis Parker (6-3, 3-1) Friday 7 p.m.
Santa Fe Christian has risen to the top of the competitive Coastal League this season, and a road test stands between the Eagles and an outright league championship. Seniors Hunter Vaccaro (QB/S) and Tony Miro (RB/LB) headline a group of two-way starters for a disciplined Santa Fe Christian club that has won its first four league games by an average of 33 points. Francis Parker has three straight wins since losing its league opener to La Jolla Country Day, and the Lancers’ balanced attack features the senior duo of quarterback Gabe Harrington (1,404 yards, 15 TDs) and receiver Hank Childs (660, 8) to go along with junior running back Jesse Brookins. This potential playoff preview should be a back and forth contest.
Clairemont (5-4, 2-1) at University City (5-4, 3-0) Friday 6:30 p.m.
University City clinched a share of the Central League title with a one-point overtime win against Christian last week, and the Centurions can secure their first winning season since 2006 with a victory against Clairemont. The visiting Chieftains will be looking to spoil the party in a game that could go either way. Key players in this matchup include University City junior running back Marcus Avelino and Clairemont senior receiver/defensive back Chris Kelly.
In the Red Zone
Coronado (2-7) at Mission Bay (5-4) Friday 2:30 p.m.
Both Coronado and Mission Bay will be looking to end the regular season on a positive note in this nonleague finale between Division IV foes. For the Islanders, a loss could mean missing the postseason for the first time since 2001.
Pictured: Point Loma junior running back D.J. Lacy