The Eagles are “Home” to Take on the Undefeated Golden West League Champions for the Division 13 Title
Rancho Christian will have “home” field advantage in this Saturday night’s CIF Southern Section Division 13 Championship Playoff Game. The Game will be played at Temecula Valley High School to accommodate an anticipated large crowd. The Eagles defeated South El Monte 42-28 last week to qualify for the CIF Final. They will be facing the undefeated Golden West League Champions, Santa Ana.
The Saints last won the Golden West League Title in 1991 and went 27 years without a CIF Playoff victory. Their last Championship game was 30 years ago.
Head Coach Charlie TeGantvoort is focused on finishing the season undefeated and bringing home the Championship Trophy to Santa Ana. Before TeGantvoort arrived to take over the program in 2013, the Saints had a 1-49 record over five seasons.
Santa Ana was the Number One seed in the Division 13 tournament. The Saints have been dominant in the Playoffs. They defeated Alhambra 32-8 in the opener and then crushed Azusa 42-0. In last week’s semifinal game, the ran over Laguna Beach 66-27.
The Saints are led by junior quarterback Damian Macias, but the heart and soul of the team are the Briseno twins. Jorge is a running back, John a receiver and they drive the offense. They both also help anchor the defense with senior nose tackle Kevin Cea and junior defensive back Joshua Brito.
Senior center Jesus Viera heads up the offensve line and gives Jorge and junior running back Allen Pacheco holes to run through. Junior place kicker Ismael Mojica is both accurate and consistent for the Saints.
Coached by Jim Kunau, Rancho Christian will be making it’s first appearance in a CIF Final. Kunau coached for at Orange Lutheran, which he took the program from a good small-schools team into one of the most successful programs at the highest level of Southern California football. This year his Eagles won the South Valley League Championship.
Carter Tredway is the starting quarterback for Rancho Christian. The sophomore has thrown for 1,213 yards and 16 touchdowns this season. His favorite receivers are sophomore Jojo Saatzer, senior Nicholas Alvarez and junior Jaden Schieberl.
Schieberl and sophomore Malosi Napoleon have been moving the chains on the ground for the Eagles in the playoffs. Schieberl rushed for 236-yards on 15 carries against El Monte last week. Napoleon added another 110-yards on 14 touches.
The Eagles have one of the best kickers in the Division in junior Emma Baker. Her teammates call her “Ms.Money” for her accuracy and consistency. She was a perfect 6 for 6 in her PAT attempts last week and is a deadly accurate on field goals of 45 yards or less.
Alvarez, junior Jake Davies, Elijah Campbell, Colton Bulger and Ryan Eaposito anchor the defense for Rancho Christian. The Eagles rose to the occasion to stop El Monte’s explosive offense ast week and are looking forward to bringing home the Division Championship this Saturday night.
Photos by Erin Baker
Courtesy Santa Ana Team Photo