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SBLive's California Top 25 Football Rankings: Halfway through, the names remain largely the same

Scorebook Live logo Scorebook Live 9/20/2022 Mitch Stephens, SBLive

More than half of The SBLive California Top 25 football teams — 16 to be exact — have played half of its regular season.

Times flies when you're winning. 

Twelve of those 16 will take a pause this week with a bye and rest up for the big finish. 

The top nine teams all kept their spots, but previous No. 12 Folsom's 23-16 win at then No. 10 Pittsburg shook up the middle portion of the rankings a tad, but not much. 

Losses by Rancho Cucamonga and Norco dropped them out of the Top 25, but they remained in the bubble. Oak Hills, at No. 22, and No. 23 Citrus Valley entered for the first time this season. 

Big-time action runs light this week, except for No. 11 De La Salle-Concord, which hosts No. 12 Folsom in the Northern California Game of the Week.  

1. St. John Bosco (4-0 record)Last week: No. 1

Last game: Beat Kahuku, Hi., 34-7 — See coverage

Next game: Friday vs. Central Catholic-Modesto (1-3)

The Braves were fantastic on defense, allowing just two first downs compared to scoring three touchdowns on offense. Matayo Uiagalelei, Kyngstonn Viliamu-Asa, Deven Bryant, Marcelles Williams, Tamal Johnson and Joshua Lefotu all made impact plays. Central Catholic, a four-time state champion, is formidable against smaller schools but with not much more than 30 players, it will be tough to keep up with Braves.  

St. John Bosco WR DeAndre Moore breaks free. Photo: Heston Quan. © Provided by Scorebook Live St. John Bosco WR DeAndre Moore breaks free. Photo: Heston Quan.

2. Mater Dei-Santa Ana (5-0)

Last week: No. 2

Last game: Beat Mililani, Hi., 42-14

Next game: Sept. 30 at JSerra Catholic-San Juan Capistrano

As the first-half of the Trinity League vs. USA Showcase, sophomore running back Jordon Davison rushed 10 times for 213 yards and three touchdowns and junior Nathaniel Frazier added five carries for 120 yards and another score. Junior QB Elijah Brown was 17 of 29 for 194 yards and touchdowns to Frazier and Jack Ressler. 

3. Centennial-Corona (4-1)

Last week: No. 3

Last game: Beat Temecula Valley 58-15

Next game: Sept. 30 at Chaparral

The Huskies scored four unanswered touchdowns in the first quarter and never looked back, holding TV to just three yards rushing on 15 carries. 

4. Long Beach Poly (5-0)

Last week: No. 4

Last game: Beat Lakewood 42-6

Next game: Sept. 30 at Millikan

The Jackrabbits gave up negative-2 yards rushing, raced to a 35-0 halftime lead before emptying the bench. According to The 562, Darius Curry ran for a touchdown and passed for three more while throwing for nearly 300 yards. Jason Robinson had eight catches for 177 yards and a score.

Long Beach Poly junior QB Darius Curry. Photo: Bobby Medellin. © Provided by Scorebook Live Long Beach Poly junior QB Darius Curry. Photo: Bobby Medellin.

5. Los Alamitos (3-2)Last week: No. 5

Last game: Beat Santa Margarita 69-49 — See coverage

Next game: Sept. 30 at Newport Harbor

With all the attention on 5-star quarterback Malachi Nelson, Los Alamitos went to Damian Henderson who rushed for 303 yards and five touchdowns in a wildly entertaining offensive affair between two Top 10 teams. 

6. Mission Viejo (4-1)

Last week: No. 6

Last game: Beat Alemany-Mission Hills 45-8

Next game: Friday vs. Leuzinger (0-4)

Kadin Semonza completed just 11 passes but five of them were for touchdowns, including two to Mikey Matthews (four catches, 85 yards. The Diablos got a combined 28 tackles from Mikey Damato and Jack Metranga. 

7. Serra-San Mateo (3-0)

Last week: No. 7

Last game: Bye

Next game: Friday at St. Francis-Mountain View (1-2)

The Padres open West Catholic Athletic League play Friday well rested against the rival Lancers, who they split with last season. Saint Francis won the regular-season contest 43-21 to clinch the league title but less than a month later, the Padres turned around that score to win 16-12 to claim the CIF-Central Coast Section D1 title. 

8. Santa Margarita-Rancho Santa Margarita (4-1)

Last week: No. 8

Last game: Lost to Los Alamitos 69-49

Next game: Sept. 30 at Orange Lutheran

Not often a quarterback, in this case Jaxon Potter, throws for 479 yards and five touchdowns and loses. That's what happened to the UAM commit who threw three TD passes to junior Emmett Mosley.  

9. Edison-Huntington Beach (5-0)

Last week: No. 9

Last game: Beat San Clemente 21-16

Next game: Friday vs. Huntington Beach (4-1)

Parker Awad threw for 163 yards and two touchdowns to Ashton Hurley (4 catches, 79 yards), while senior running back Carter Hogue carries 21 times for 95 yards and a score. 

10. Chaminade-West Hills (5-0)Last week: No. 11

Last game: Beat Loyola-Los Angeles 48-10

Next game: Friday vs. Alemany (1-2)

Javance Tupouata-Johnson accounted for 335 yards and three touchdowns and Noah Elliott rushed 18 times for 127 yards and one score as the Eagles had little trouble with the Cubs, who managed just 84 yards of offense. Chaminade has now outscored foes 190-55.

11. De La Salle-Concord (3-1)

Last week: No. 12

Last game: Beat Cathedral Catholic-San Diego 28-20

Next game: Friday vs. Folsom (3-1)

The Spartans, down three key linemen due to injury, used the big play to fight off the defending state 1-AA champions on the road. Fresno State-bound RB Charles Greer (22 carries, 211 yards) scored on runs of 83 and 69 yards and Carson Su’esu’e completed TD passes of 61 and 60 yards to Journey McKoy and Johnathan Guerrero, respectively.  61-yard TD pass from Carson Su’esu’e to Journey McKoy. The Spartans were missing numerous starters due to injuries including college-bound linemen Cooper Powers, Derek Thompson and Chase Tofaeono. De La Salle coach Justin Alumbaugh was pleased with the effort, but gave the performance a ‘C.' “Hard fought game,” he texted. “Happy we were able to learn from our mistakes and come out with the win. The effort was good. Physicality was good. But too many mistakes.”

12. Folsom (3-1)Last week: No. 13

Last game: Beat Pittsburg 23-15

Next game: Friday at De La Salle (3-1)

Junior QB Austin Mack is just another in a long line of good ones in the program, having completed 56 of 80 for 833 yards with 10 touchdowns and no interceptions in early going. The lack of running game (222 yards, 3.4 yards per carry) is a concern, but then again with receivers like Rico Flores Jr. (19 catches, 344 yards, two TDs) and Omari Smith Jr. (12, 159, 2), the Bulldogs can move the ball.

A blocked field goal by Folsom's Joseph Chavez was returned by Ayreon Smith 75 yards for a touchdown, keying the Bulldogs' victory. Photo: Dennis Lee. © Provided by Scorebook Live A blocked field goal by Folsom's Joseph Chavez was returned by Ayreon Smith 75 yards for a touchdown, keying the Bulldogs' victory. Photo: Dennis Lee.

13. Pittsburg (3-1)

Last week: No. 10

Last game: Lost to Folsom 23-15

Next game: Sept. 30 vs. McClymonds-Oakland

The Pirates outgained Folsom 427-250 but four interceptions and a blocked field goal and blocked punt did in the home team. Pittsburg couldn't give 5-star QB Jaden Rashada much time to throw but he still managed to go 22 of 36 for 285 yards and two touchdowns. He also rushed for 73 yards off scrambles, including sacks. 

14. Bishop Amat-La Puente (3-1)

Last week: No. 14

Last game: Beat Leuzinger 38-14

Next game: Friday at Damien (1-4)

Chris Lopez' punt block and return for touchdown ignited the Lancers to win over Leuzinger. Richie Munoz completed a touchdown pass of 23 yards to Delano Franklin to help secure the decisive victory. 

15. Inglewood (5-0)

Last week: No. 15

Last game: Beat Lawndale 21-0

Next game: Sept. 30 at Hawthorne

The Sentiniels recorded their second straight and third shutout of the season in the home win on Saturday. Freshman quarterback Husan Longstreet completed 13 of 22 for 274 yards and two touchdowns. 

16. Orange Lutheran (4-1)

Last week: No. 16

Last game: Beat Notre Dame-Sherman Oaks 37-14

Next game: Sept. 30 vs. Santa Margarita at Orange Coast College

Sophomore quarterback TJ Lateef completed 26 of 34 for 399 yards and four touchdowns to four different receivers against Notre Dame. The Lancers piled up 599 yards of offense. Jackson Weng had five catches for 116 yards and a TD.

17. Serra-Gardena (3-2)

Last week: No. 17

Last game: Beat Oaks Christian 20-14

Next game: Sept. 30 at Notre Dame-Sherman Oaks

Cincere Rhaney had another big night, rushing 26 times for 220 yards and a touchdowns as the Cavaliers scored 14 unanswered points in the second half. 

18. JSerra Catholic (3-2)

Last week: No. 18

Last game: Beat Rancho Cucamonga 34-18 

Next game: Sept. 30 vs. Mater Dei (5-0)

Sophomore George Perez rushed 19 times for 86 yards and two touchdowns and Zander Singh and Kamar Garbourel each added rushing touchdowns for the Lions against Rancho Cucamonga. 

19. Ayala-Chino Hills (5-0) Last week: No. 20

Last game: Beat Chino Hills 20-19 — See coverage

Next game: Friday vs. Citrus Hills

The Bulldogs' secondary was exception, forcing Chino Hills into just seven completions in 19 attempts for 88 yards and two interceptions to win a thrilling Battle for the Bone. Dominic Alloway's touchdown off a reverse play proved decisive though the defense came up big down the stretch. 

Ayala wins the Battle of the Bon over Chino Hills. Photo: Lance Smith. © Provided by Scorebook Live Ayala wins the Battle of the Bon over Chino Hills. Photo: Lance Smith.

20. San Clemente (4-1)

Last week: No. 21

Last game: Lost to No. 9 Edison 21-16

Next game: Friday at Murrieta Valley (3-1)

Despite a big game from senior tailback Blake Allen (23 attempts, 172 yards) and quarterback Broderick Redden (two rushing touchdowns), the Tritons couldn't overcome two touchdowns in the third quarter by the visiting Chargers. 

21. Warren-Downey (3-1)Last week: No. 21

Last game: Beat Culver City 54-20

Next game: Sept. 30 vs. Mayfair

Even without 5-star quarterback Nico Iamaleava, Warren rolled to an impressive win. 

22. Oak Hills-Hesperia (5-0)

Last week: NR

Last game: Beat St. Bonaventure-Ventura 35-21

Next game: Sept. 30 at Burroughs-Ridgecrest

The Bulldogs survived despite giving up 276 yards and three touchdowns to Delon Thompson, who leads the Southern Section with 1,271 rushing yards and 14 touchdowns. A late interception in the end zone by Thaddeus Jones bailed out Oak Hills, which gained 300 yards including 159 passing by Diego Lopez. 

23. Citrus Valley (3-1)

Last week: NR

Last game: Beat Norco 43-20

Next game: Friday at Ayala (5-0)

Hunter Herrera completed 18 of 26 for 264 yards and five touchdowns, four to Brockton Lium (8 catches, 104 yards) as the host Blackhawks blitzed previous No. 19 Norco. Herrera also rushed seven times for 44 yards. 

24. Buchanan (5-0)

Last week: No. 24

Last game: Beat San Joaquin Memorial 31-24 — See coverage

Next game: Sept. 30 at Clovis West

For the second straight week, the Central Section's No. 1 team fell behind against a section-ranked opponent but used a 28-0 flurry to win on the road. Fresno State-bound QB Jayden Mandal completed 18 of 26 for 251 yards and a TD to Colton O'Toole (7 catches, 156 yards. Michael Runnels rushed 15 times for 122 yards, including a 58-yard touchdown to put his team up 31-21. 

25. Liberty-Bakersfield (3-1)

Last week: No. 25

Last game: Beat Central-Fresno 35-10

Next game: Friday at Carlsbad

After a disheartening loss to Buchanan the previous week — the game was cut short by lightning with the game in the balance — the Patriots played with an edge, especially in the second half when it went on a 28-7 run. Liberty used TDs from four different players (Mehki Deluth, Jalen Hankins, Kresean Krizzy and Cole O’Brien) and a 98-yard pick-6 from Chandler Chisolm early in the third quarter. A rare road game at a San Diego Section squad should be interesting.

Six on the bubble: Apple Valley (4-1), Carlsbad (3-1), Cathedral Catholic (2-3), Norco (2-2), Rancho Cucamonga (3-2), Yorba Linda (5-0).

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