HE SAID “I love Hart football” – Hart kicker Paul Weinstein, after kicking a 45-yard field goal Friday to beat Valencia 17-14. DID YOU KNOW? AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week This is a memorable anniversary year for Canyon and Hart – and a not-so-memorable one for Antelope Valley. Twenty years ago, Canyon defeated Antelope Valley 9-7 to win the 1985 Southern Section Coastal Conference championship – Canyon’s third consecutive section title. Ten years ago, Hart defeated Antelope Valley 35-28 in the 1995 Southern Section Div. II championship, one of Hart’s biggest upset victories. The Antelopes had returned most of its top players after defeating Hart 36-15 in the Div. II final the previous season. SPOTLIGHT Saugus’ Casey Stevenson, who made a career-best nine receptions for 83 yards and two touchdowns in a 35-28 victory Friday over Burbank – including the winning, 11-yard score with 29 seconds to play – is enjoying quite a season. Stevenson, who is also a top baseball player, has 37 receptions for 473 yards, and he’s averaging 25 yards as a kick returner. The 6-foot-1 senior also has four tackles as a reserve defensive back. OFFBEAT After seven weeks as one of the area’s most productive receivers, Golden Valley’s Martel Hammond switched to running back against Salesian of Los Angeles last Saturday – and, boy, was he sore afterward. Not one to tip-toe into his new role, Hammond carried 30 times for 65 yards and a TD and caught two passes to lift Golden Valley to a 24-14 win for the school’s first varsity victory. On Monday, he could barely walk but was all smiles. “Oh, I’m sore, but it’s worth it,” Hammond said. With Golden Valley down to its fourth-string quarterback, coach Rob Swartz felt like he had no choice but to switch Hammond to the backfield. “He’s one of our best athletes, and we had to figure out a way to get Martel the football as much as possible,” Swartz said. OFF THE CHART The area’s biggest players: Name, SchoolHT/WT J.T. Hartmire, Hart6-2, 315 Henry Diaz, Burbank6-2, 310 Ramsen Golpashin, Saugus6-4, 305 Christian Sanchez, Valencia6-0, 289 Josh Velasquez, Golden Valley6-4, 275 Jon Warren, Hart6-1, 270 Marc Manfro, West Ranch6-0, 270 NUMBERS GAME 4 Blocked kicks by Valencia’s Rickie Crouch, a senior transfer from Crenshaw of Los Angeles, who has developed into one of the Foothill League’s most effective special-teams players. TONIGHT’S GAMES GAME OF THE WEEK VALENCIA (7-1) at CANYON (7-1) Player to watch: Randy Rigg, DB, Canyon. After intercepting two passes last week – one a 26-yard TD return – Rigg hopes to impress against a Valencia team that loves to pass. Outlook: This is a big one, as two of the Southland’s premier programs go head-to-head in a showdown featuring lots of big-play performers on both sides. Valencia, coming off a disappointing 17-14 loss to Hart, has a great one-two punch in QB Michael Herrick and RB Shane Vereen. Herrick, closing in on the state’s career yardage record, has passed for 2,212 yards and accounted for 18 TDs (10 passing, eight rushing). Vereen has rushed for 1,125 yards (9.1 avg.), caught 35 passes and accounted for 19 TDs. The swift junior has 12 100-yard rushing performances in 17 games the past two seasons. Canyon’s J.J. DiLuigi has rushed for 1,087 yards, caught 14 passes for 303 yards and scored 30 TDs. He’s averaging 43.5 yards on kick returns. Since a surprising upset loss to Simi Valley in Week 3, Canyon has won five in a row, by an average margin of 34.8 points. The Cowboys, expected to be without LB Tyler Hawkins (concussion), anticipates a stiff challenge. Valencia averages 35.5 points and 466.1 yards – best among schools from the Santa Clarita, San Fernando, Conejo and Antelope valleys. A loss by Valencia probably means at best a third-place finish in the Foothill League, which could cost the Vikings a home seed in the first round of the Div. II playoffs. HART (7-1) vs. BURBANK (3-5) at Burroughs HS, 7 p.m. Player to watch: Steve Burton, DL, Hart. Burton, a 6-foot-3, 220-pound returning starter, has recovered from a broken thumb and returned to the lineup last week for the first time since the season opener, helping Hart to a 17-14 victory over Valencia. He wore a soft cast but managed to make three tackles and cause a fumble. Outlook: Hart is riding high after last week’s dramatic victory over Valencia, and the Indians figure to be a heavy favorite. Burbank has won just three league games the past 12 seasons. Hart’s Tyler Lyon has passed for 957 yards and seven TDs, and rushed for two TDs. Several Hart starters suffered minor injuries against Valencia, including leading WR Troy Yudin (concussion), leading rusher Delano Howell (ankle) and multipurpose standout Robbie Casselberry (stomach/foot). All except Howell are expected to start. Yudin (43 receptions, eight TDs) was held without a reception last week for the first time in his two-year career, although he came through with an important fourth-quarter INT. A year ago, he burned Burbank for four receptions for 186 yards and two TDs. Hart’s defense, led by LBs Patrick Sarkissian, Griffin Cannon and Chris Hickok, DL Wilfred Aka and DBs James Wheeler and Anthony Luna, has allowed an average of 270.1 yards,and held five opponents to two or fewer TDs. Burbank has lost three in a row. Robert Linda has passed for 519 yards but just one TD since taking over for injured Jason Barbic five weeks ago. Marcus Hood has rushed for 860 yards (6.4 avg.) and nine TDs, and Jason McNeil has 34 receptions and six TDs. BURROUGHS (3-5) vs. SAUGUS (3-5) at College of the Canyons, 7:30 p.m. Player to watch: Ryan McKillop, LB, Saugus. McKillop’s job isn’t complicated. He needs to focus on RB Thomas Kyle, one of the league’s top breakaway threats. Outlook: Saugus ought to be fired up. The Centurions must finish with two victories to have a realistic chance of making the playoffs. Saugus got back on track last week with a dramatic 35-28 victory over Burbank, driving 99 yards in the waning minutes to snap a five-game losing streak. Zach Summers has passed for 960 yards and eight TDs, and he’s also a talented scrambler who has scored five TDs. In critical situations, he almost always looks for Casey Stevenson (37 receptions, five TDs). Kyle, a three-year standout, has rushed for 884 yards, caught 17 passes and scored nine TDs, several 50 yards or longer. GOLDEN VALLEY (1-7) at CARPINTERIA (5-3), 7:30 p.m. Outlook: Golden Valley is coming off its first victory in school history but can’t expect a day at the beach at Carpinteria, an annual Div. XI playoff contender coming off a loss to state power Oaks Christian of Westlake Village. Golden Valley’s Martel Hammond, a productive WR, switched to RB last game and rushed for 65 yards and a touchdown on 30 carries in a milestone 24-14 victory over Salesian of Los Angeles. DL Mike Spagnola is the team’s key tackler. Carpinteria coach John Hazelton coached at Montclair Prep of Panorama City and Burbank and also was an assistant coach for one season at USC. STANDINGS FOOTHILL LEAGUE TeamLeagueOverall Hart3-07-1 Canyon3-07-1 Valencia2-17-1 Saugus1-23-5 Burroughs0-33-5 Burbank0-33-5 Others: Golden Valley 1-7 (freelance); West Ranch 1-1 (freelance). SEASON LOGS CANYON (7-1, 3-0) 55at Leuzinger0 42Burroughs/R21 27Simi Valley34 42South Torrance6 21Crespi0 45Burbank10 55Saugus at COC7 42Burroughs/B7 TonightValencia Nov. 10at Hart GOLDEN VALLEY (1-7) Home: Canyon HS 0Burbank66 14Knight24 14Pioneer Valley67 7dtpostAlemany38 14Palos Verdes62 14Quartz Hill51 7at Ontario Christian56 24Salesian14 Tonightat Carpinteria Nov. 11St. Genevieve HART (7-1, 3-0) Home: College of the Canyons 7Moorpark6 21at St. Bonaventure33 38Westlake7 23at Birmingham13 34Loyola27 14Saugus7 55at Burroughs21 17at Valencia14 TonightBurbank at Burr HS Nov. 10Canyon SAUGUS (3-5, 1-2) Home: College of the Canyons 57at Blair0 48Pasadena7 21Chino48 7Notre Dame21 0at St. Francis20 7at Hart14 7Canyon55 35at Burbank28 TonightBurroughs Nov. 11Valencia VALENCIA (6-2, 2-1) 35at Bishop Amat21 51Birmingham30 48El Toro20 30St. John Bosco3 28at Notre Dame35 36at Burroughs/B21 42dtpost!3 17Hart14 Tonightat Canyon Nov. 11at Saugus 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. 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