Last year, they had a basketball-like shootout, with both teams combining for 132 points in the CIF PAC-5 Division Playoff match up.
This time, one of the most highly-anticipated rematches under the high school football lights takes center stage when Serra (Gardena) takes on Centennial (Corona) at Oceanside’s Honor Bowl. Serra will look to avenge last season's thrilling 68-64 loss to the Huskies.
Will Serra and Centennial light the score board up? Or will this be a defensive battle? Here’s a breakdown:
ABOUT SERRA: Nine NCAA Division I prospects help populate Serra’s football field, with two of its top players heading to the PAC-12 soon.
Defensive end Wole Betiku chose UCLA over 24 other scholarship offers before the season started. Safety C.J. Pollard will play for rival USC. He too committed early.
Another name to note is quarterback/linebacker Khalil Tate, who accepted Arizona’s offer but won’t be on the field after getting ejected from last week’s 41-15 rout over Lakewood. By CIF rule, a player who gets ejected from a game must sit out the next contest.
ABOUT CENTENNIAL: The Huskies have one of the deepest and most talented senior classes in California, with seven Class of 2016 players getting courted by a Division I college program.
Running back J.J. Taylor – who made CGM’s Gold Mine list after tallying 136 yards in the week zero game against East High of Salt Lake City – will be an Arizona Wildcat after his prep career concludes. Wide receiver Javon McKinley has over 25 programs pursuing him.
Defensively, safety Cam Bynum (Cal commit) and cornerback Kentrell Love (Washington pledge) are PAC-12 bound. The most wanted Husky in the secondary, though, is safety Chacho Ulloa, who holds nearly 20 offers.
KEY MATCHUP: DANIEL JUAREZ VERSUS WOLE BETIKU. It’s likely that these two will cross paths in the trenches. Juarez, a three-star offensive tackle prospect who committed to Cal in April 2015, will get the call to slow down Serra’s freakish bookend Betiku.
DON’T SLEEP ON: Cam Bynum. When Serra is on offense, they’ll likely try to avoid the ball-hawking Ulloa as much as possible. But that could mean a huge night for the versatile Bynum.
GAME INFORMATION: The Honor Bowl contest takes place at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 5.