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Centennial Scores Seven TDís, Blown Out in Run for State Title

Huskies Outrun by McGrew, Braves in CIF SoCal Regional Bowl, 70-49

Sunday, December 15th, 2013
Issue 50, Volume 17.
Paul Bandong
Sports Editor

St John Bosco sophomore running back Sean McGrew had scored only fifteen touchdowns in fourteen games; he scored SEVEN times in the CIF State Open Division Regional Bowl Game held December 14th at Cerritos College. The undefeated Braves (15-0) -- Pac-5 Division Champions with a 34-7 win over Mater Dei -- dominated the Inland Division Champion Centennial Huskies (13-2) from the outset. It was a matchup of highly-explosive no-huddle spread offenses.

Centennialís only losses this year were to Pac-5 teams Poly and Alemany. The Huskies had defeated Southwestern League Champion Vista Murrieta 26-12 to win the CIF title and advance to the State Bowl Semi-finals. Centennial running back senior Tre Watson averaged 250 yards rushing per game and had rushed for 48 touchdowns coming into this game; he rushed for 519 yards against Upland two weeks ago. Watson was not the only star this night.

The Bravesí defense stopped the potent Huskiesí offense– which had scored more than forty points eleven times and had scored 86 points in a CIF semifinals game against Upland – on their opening possession and forced a turnover on downs at the Bosco 32. Bosco QB junior Josh Rosen kept the ball for a 21-yard gain; the very next play, McGrew broke free down the right sideline 47 yards for his first score.

After forcing a Centennial punt, the Bravesí Rosen hit Shay Fields on a 46-yard pass to the 28. McGrew carried eleven yards to the 17, then coasted 17 yards untouched down the middle for his second score and a 14-0 lead with 6:30 left in the first quarter.

Arizona-commit Naijiel Hale intercepted a pass from Huskiesí QB Robert Webber and returned it 70 yards to the 7. Centennial made a goal line stand to stop the Braves; defensive back JJ Taylor made a touchdown-saving tackle on Nas Anesi at the one-yard line. Webber then engineered a 99-yard 11-play drive, hitting Barry Ware on a 49-yard hitch-and-go for Centennialís first score, 14-7 at the beginning of the second quarter. This was the first of three Centennial aerial scores by Webber in the quarter.

The Braves responded quickly with McGrew sprinting down the left side untouched 59 yards for his third score, 21-7. At this point, he had carried only five times for 134 yards and the three scores.

Centennial had the ball third-and-four at the five; Webber found wide receiver Greyson Bankhead in the back of the end zone for the score, 21-14. The Huskiesí defense forced a Bosco punt. Webber then drove his team 78 yards in ten plays, hitting Ware on a five-yard pass with six seconds left in the half. Eric Locklin caught the two-point conversion pass to tie the game 21-21 at the half.

Centennial had the edge in halftime stats with 307 total yards (vs. 234), 188 yards passing (vs. 56), 6-of-12 third down conversions (vs 1-of-3) and 17:14 time of possession (vs. 6:46). Watson had carried 25 times for 96 yards. Webber was 12-of-24 for 166 yards and three touchdowns.

St John Bosco blew the game wide open in the third quarter with 28 unanswered points: Jaleel Woodad caught a 31-yd pass from Rosen; McGrew raced 81 yards through the middle of the Huskiesí defense; Jarett Balter caught a 15-yard play-action pass; and McGrew scored again on a 76-yd screen pass. The first three scores happened in the opening four minutes of the quarter. After the four-touchdown barrage, the Braves led 49-21 at the end of three.

Centennial scored four touchdowns on four consecutive drives in the fourth quarter to come within two scores. A third-and-29 hook-and-lateral TD play from Webber to Locklin to Watson was called back for forward lateral and facemask penalties. Webber then hit Ware to bring Centennial within two scores, 63-49, with 2:31 left in the game.

The Bravesí first seven touchdowns were a model of scoring efficiency behind their huge offensive line: two plays, 68 yards (21 seconds); four plays, 74 yards (42 seconds); three plays, 65 yards (1:13); two plays, 32 yards (43 seconds); one play, 82 yards (13 seconds); three plays, 29 yards (25 seconds); and one play, 76 yards (10 seconds).

It was the second time this year that St John Bosco has scored seventy points; they scored 75 against Crenshaw. It was also the most points ever scored upon a Centennial team.

McGrew ended the night with 367 yards on 17 carries, six rushing touchdowns (47, 17, 59, 83, 46, and 9 yards) and one catch for a 76-yard TD. QB Rosen threw for 243 yards and four touchdowns. The Braves scored seventy points on only forty-two plays (two were kneeldowns).

Centennial QB Webber completed 35 of his 60 attempts for 422 yards and five touchdowns. Ware caught four of those TD passes and nine more for a total of 155 yards. Cal-commit Watson carried the ball 46 times for 264 yards and two rushing TDís, tying his schoolís career touchdown record (50). Centennial amassed 774 total yards on close to 115 plays.

Seventeen of Boscoís twenty-two starters have Division 1 college offers.

Coach Matt Loganís Centennial teams have won eight CIF championships, been to four State Bowl Championships and boast one of the few teams to beat De La Salle. They went 15-0 in 2008 defeating De La Salle to win the state championship.

St John Bosco advances to the CIF State Championship against Northern California Regional Champion and four-time defending State Champion De La Salle (14-0) next Saturday at the StubHub Center in Carson. De La Salle defeated Folsom 45-17. The battle features not only the top two teams in California, but two of the top teams in the nation according to most polls.



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