Serra gets its revenge for Western Division crown

0
560

After blowing a 20-7 lead in a 28-20 loss at Chaminade High in its Mission League opener on Oct. 5, Serra High’s football team has been looking forward to last Friday since.

The Cavaliers earned the position after easy CIF-Southern Section Western Division wins over Oxnard and Santa Monica, then knocking off top seed Lompoc, 34-21, on the road in the semifinals on Nov. 23.

Serra, then, went on to rally for a 30-28 victory over Chaminade in the two teams’ rematch last Friday at Serra. The game was televised on Fox Prime Sports.

After blowing a 20-7 lead in a 28-20 loss at Chaminade High in its Mission League opener on Oct. 5, Serra High’s football team has been looking forward to last Friday since.

The Cavaliers earned the position after easy CIF-Southern Section Western Division wins over Oxnard and Santa Monica, then knocking off top seed Lompoc, 34-21, on the road in the semifinals on Nov. 23.

Serra, then, went on to rally for a 30-28 victory over Chaminade in the two teams’ rematch last Friday at Serra. The game was televised on Fox Prime Sports.

Not only did the Cavaliers win the division but they received a ticket to the Southern California Regional Division II Bowl Championship game as they will face CIF- Southern Section Southwest Division champion Edison High from Huntington Beach for the shot at their third bowl game in four seasons Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa.

The winner will face either Clayton Valley Charter or Oakdale for the state championship on Dec. 15 at the Home Depot Center in Carson. Time is yet to be determined.

The game was tied at 14 at halftime, then Serra (12-2) took a 17-14 lead on a 38-yard field goal by kicker Ryan Dobson with 8:10 left in the third quarter.

The Eagles, who finished their season at 11-3, came back for a 21-17 advantage with 5:10 remaining in the third period as they drove 64 yards in six plays, capped by a 30-yard run from premiere running back Terrell Newby, his second touchdown of the game.

The Cavaliers, however, responded as they took advantage of good field position, starting at their own 40-yard-line. Behind the strong passing and running of junior quarterback Jalen Greene, Serra drove 60 yards in seven plays, as they took the lead for good on a 20-yard TD run from sophomore running back Malik Roberson.

With 2:27 to go in the game, Serra padded its lead to 30-21 on Roberson’s second touchdown run of three yards.

That made things very tight for Chaminade but it managed to come back and cut the Cavaliers’ lead to two points on a 44-yard scoring pass from quarterback Brad Kaaya to wide receiver Elijah Dunston with 58 seconds remaining.

The Eagles attempted an onside kick as Nolan Ramirez thought he recovered. The officials, however, declared that the ball did not travel the minimum of 10 yards and Serra was awarded the ball. The Cavaliers were able to run down the clock for their third CIF title in four years.

“We were a good team all year,” Serra head coach Scott Altenberg said. “Malik Roberston stepped it up. He’s a pretty special time. He worked real hard. That last drive was special. We were able to take off six minutes.”

The Cavaliers began the game’s scoring with 6:32 left in the first quarter on a 40-yard fake punt attempt run from Adorre Jackson.

Newby, a highly regarded senior Major Division I college prospect, bounced back with a 24-yard touchdown run to the game at seven with 3:38 remaining in the first period.

The seesaw battle continued in the second quarter as Serra took a 14-7 advantage when Dwight Williams returned an interception off Kaaya 35 yards for a TD.

“We’re CIF champions. It feels amazing,” Williams said. “There was no way I was going to lose to this team, again.”

Chaminade tied the game at 14 with 7:02 to go before halftime on an 82-yard punt return from Dymund Lee.

Serra gets its revenge for Western Division crown