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Another battle draws near

Knights, Falcons ready for annual "Boulevard" scrap on Friday

Hoover, Glendale and Prep look for win No. 1.

September 16, 2010|By Grant Gordon and Gabriel Rizk, grant.gordon@latimes.com
  • CV quarterback Zac Wilkerson.
CV quarterback Zac Wilkerson. (Cheryl A. Guerrero,…)

GLENDALE — The following are previews of the area's upcoming high school football games.

Heading into the season, both the Crescenta Valley High and St. Francis football teams were being talked about as much for who had graduated as anything else.

For the Golden Knights, the biggest departure was that of standout Dietrich Riley.

But after a 42-27 win in the first week over Arcadia, while there remains plenty of room for improvement, it's clear that St. Francis has plenty of talent returning.

As for Crescenta Valley, despite a 34-13 win over Verdugo Hills to open the year, first-year Coach Paul Schilling is well aware that a team that returns just one starter each on offense and defense is still in search of much-needed experience, especially when faced with the task of taking on the CIF Southern Section Western Division's No. 5 team, which St. Francis currently is.

"We're not young ... but they're just so inexperienced," said Schilling, who has plenty of seniors in the lineup, but few with varsity playing experience.

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And, of course, there's the not-so small detail of this being the annual "Battle for Foothill Boulevard," which kicks off at 7 p.m. Friday at Glendale High's Moyse Field.

"The atmosphere at the school and for the kids, it's almost like a playoff game, but it's Game Two," said Schilling, whose Falcons will try to stop an eight-game losing streak in the annual battle. "We've got a lot to get ready for. …The last few years they've just had a better team."

Last year was one of the closest battles in a while, however, with St. Francis edging Crescenta Valley, 28-21. Still, many of the key Falcons, such as Harry Pessy, Kyle Cota and Sam Campbell are gone now.

But St. Francis Coach Jim Bonds is putting that to the side.

"Every year we play these guys, you can throw the records out, you can throw the amount of returning starters out, you can throw everything out the window," Bonds said.

He's also hoping his team will toss out any thought of overlooking the Falcons, as might have been the case in the Golden Knights' close win over Arcadia.

"I hope we're not dumb enough to do that," Bonds said. "We better not overlook them or I'll be very upset on Saturday morning."

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