GAME OF THE WEEK
NO. 10 SAN CLEMENT (3-0) VS. NO. 7 CROWN OF THE SEA (3-0)
Where when: Newport Harbor High, Friday, 7 p.m.
Live coverage: www.ballysports.com/watch/live/prep-zone-live
Analysis: This is San Clemente’s first game against an opponent from Orange County. The Tritons opened the season with a string of games against San Diego opponents, including last week’s 17-0 victory over La Costa Canyon. Running back Blake Allen is averaging 112 yards per game for the Tritons. Corona del Mar is better than the three teams the Tritons have played. The Sea Kings were able to earn a 14-7 win at Palos Verdes last week. Corona del Mar’s excellent quarterback David Rasor sat out last week due to a sprained ankle and might not play against San Clemente. Kaleb Arnett, a junior who received much praise from Corona del Mar coach Dan O’Shea over the summer, overcame a shaky start against Palos Verdes to finish with 13-of-25 completions for 181 yards and two touchdowns. He has a good receiver to go to, Cooper Hoch, whose third-quarter touchdown reception last week provided the winning points. Whether it’s Rasor under center or Arnett, Corona del Mar should go 4-0.
Winner: crown of the sea
OTHER TOP GAMES
NO. 12 NEWPORT HARBOR (2-1) VS. NO. 12 CAPISTRANO VALLEY (3-0)
Where when: Capistrano Valley High, Friday, 7 p.m.
Analysis: That’s not a typo. There are three teams — Newport Harbor, Capistrano Valley and Servite — tied for No. 12 in Orange County’s top 25 soccer this week. Newport Harbor’s most impressive game was last week’s loss to No. 8 JSerra 28-21. That was closer than expected. Newport Harbor senior safety Carson de Avila improved his All-County candidacy last week with nine solo tackles and a forced fumble and disrupted two passes. He’s also a valuable guy in the blitz, and he should be again in this one. Capistrano Valley senior quarterback Trey Kukuk is having another exceptional season. He’s averaging 299 yards through the air per game, he threw for 346 yards and five touchdowns last week in a 48-14 win over Corona Santiago, and he’s also a threat. County standings indicate this will be a close game. It will be, with Newport Harbor’s defense being the difference.
Winner: Newport Harbor
NO. 22 ORANGE (1-2) VS. NO. 16 SHALL BE (1-2)
Where when: La Habra High, Friday, 7 p.m.
Analysis: After opening the season with a one-sided win over Pacifica, Orange have lost two in a row. Both losses were for good teams, 24-12 for Villa Park and 36-7 for Yorba Linda. The Panthers aren’t getting the kind of yards and touchdowns from running back Kobe Boykin that one would expect. La Habra lost at Upland 24-12 and at home to Bishop Amat 42-7 before winning last week on the road against Chula Vista Eastlake 35-28. La Habra quarterback Justin Gil, a Freeway League offensive player of the year last season, isn’t having a great year so far, completing just 47 percent of his passes for an average of 157 yards per game. . That could be due to extraneous factors, and he has what it takes to warm up soon. The Highlanders moved Jacob Apodaca from receiver to running back and Apodaca made the move look good last week, rushing for 195 yards against Eastlake. If that run game production and defense, led by linebacker Gabriel Medel, plays like it can, La Habra wins at home, where the Highlanders win big.
Winner: the habra
NO. 21 HILL (2-1) VS. NO. 22 TROY (3-0)
Where when: Fullerton High School, Friday, 7 pm
Analysis: Foothill’s season-opening loss, 27-13 to Cypress, becomes less disappointing with each passing week as we see that Cypress is on the road to a big season. The Knights followed that loss with a 9-7 victory over Tustin and last week’s 10-7 victory over Galena in Reno. Those last two results reveal the quality of Foothill’s defense that includes senior linebacker Ethan Charpentier, who has 51 tackles, including a safety in the two-point win over Tustin. The Knights defense better be ready for this one. Troy has wins over Bell Gardens and Anaheim, and last week beat Irvine 29-14. The Warriors, perhaps La Habra’s main competition in the Freeway League, are averaging 268 rushing yards per game. Senior Fischer Huss is averaging 141 rushing yards per game and 9 yards per carry. Foothill must limit Troy’s offense on first and second downs to put the Warriors in third-and-long situations. Charpentier and his teammates are capable of it.
NO. 12 SERVANT (1-2) NO. 4 THE ALAMITOS (1-2)
Where when: Veterans Stadium, Long Beach, Friday, 7:30 p.m.
Live coverage: West Bally Sports
Analysis: There are two teams that need a win. Servite, after losing to Rancho Cucamonga and Mission Viejo, earned a victory last week: 10-7 over La Mirada. Any win is a good win, and while La Mirada is a tough group playing on another ambitious schedule outside of the league, that’s not earth-shattering. Servite will get better as the season progresses and will be better next year. Los Alamitos opened with an impressive 41-0 victory over Garces in Bakersfield, then lost to two excellent teams, American Heritage (No. 13 in the MaxPreps.com national rankings), 56-27 in Florida and last week 33- 28 against National No. 51 Basha of Arizona. USC’s committed wide receiver Makai Lemon, who was ejected from last week’s game against Basha, will play against Servite. He’s a big target for USC-committed quarterback Malachi Nelson, who will figure out how to make enough big plays to pull Los Alamitos to 2-2.
Winner: Los Alamitos
Fryer on football last week: 3-2
Season to date: 8-7