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Edison wide receiver McCade Barrett, left, and David Atencio celebrate after the Chargers defeated Buena Park, 38-21, Friday night. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Orange County Register/SCNG)

Fryer: White not done having fun with Chargers

STAFF COLUMNIST

HUNTINGTON BEACH – Dave White, having averted his gaze all season, is starting to see that the sun is setting.

Meanwhile, anxiety is rising. Any game could be the final game of White’s 31st and final season as Edison’s head coach.

“I’ve been feeling like this a couple of weeks now,” said White, not looking at the handful of postgame reporters but staring forward at nothing in particular. “So I’m getting a little emotional now. It’s coming to a close.”

Edison beat Buena Park, 38-21, in a CIF-Soutern Section Division 3 second-round playoff game at Huntington Beach High. So White and the Chargers keep going for at least one more week.

Edison plays at Rancho Verde of Moreno Valley in a Division 3 semifinal next Friday.

For Buena Park, it was the end of a terrific season. The Coyotes won their first league championship in decades and, best of all to many of them, finally beat La Habra. Buena Park finished 10-2.

It was difficult for Buena Park coach Anthony White to set aside the disappointment of Friday’s loss, but he was able to assemble some perspective.

“Our whole program had probably its best year in school history,” White said. “The freshman team went 9-1, the JVs went 9-1 and now the varsity went 10-2. We’re going to have 10 players sign to scholarship this year, so we’re proud of that, too.”

Edison center Mike Saffell is proud that he and his teammates have at least one more week with Dave White, although White has emphasized to the players that they should not focus on winning for him.

“He’s made it clear to us that there is no pressure on us to win for his part,” Saffell said. “He’s having a lot of fun with us and we’re having a lot of fun with him.”

The fun continues for at least another seven days for Edison and the coach.

Elsewhere under the lights …

• Los Alamitos also won a Division 3 second-round game, beating Palos Verdes, 35-7. If Los Al beats La Serna of Whittier in one semifinal and Edison beats Rancho Verde in the other, then it’s an all-Sunset League, Los Al-Edison title game.

• Mission Viejo coach Bob Johnson was not enthused that the Diablos were in Division 1 with the CIF-Southern Section’s big private schools. He and others who maintain that private and public schools should be in separate playoff divisions have a couple of valid points. But it was a public school, Rancho Cucamonga, that eliminated Mission Viejo in Friday’s second round, 42-26.

• Like Mission Viejo, Katella went into the second round with an 11-0 record. Like Mission Viejo, Katella lost, 26-7, to Twenty-nine Palms in Division 11. Katella was the division’s No. 1 seed.

• Santa Margarita was rocked by St. John Bosco. Again. Friday’s score: 54-14. The score when they played in a Trinity League game Oct. 14: St. John Bosco 47, Santa Margarita 10.

• El Modena’s best receiver, Francisco Islas, did not play (ankle injury). The Vanguards are versatile enough, though, and defeated Rio Mesa of Oxnard, 35-21, in Division 8.

• Division 8 semifinal rematch: El Modena at Yorba Linda, Friday. El Modena beat Yorba Linda, 42-21, on Sept. 30 in a Century Conference cross-league game. The North Hills League, to which El Modena belongs, and the Crestview League, to which Yorba Linda belongs, are the two leagues that of four teams each that make up the Century Conference.

• St. Margaret’s lost to Norte Vista of Riverside, 62-56, in Division 7. This was an encouraging playoff season for St. Margaret’s. The Tartans moved up from what was essentially Division 13 last year, beat North Torrance by 41 points in the first round and competed well Friday on the road against fourth-seeded Norte Vista, which was a league champion.

• Whew! Corona del Mar was in a fight that went all 12 rounds. The Sea Kings beat Colony of Ontario, 49-48, in Division 4. That Chase Garbers-Tae Le quarterback-receiver combination is tough to beat.

• Laguna Beach can grind out a game. The Breakers had two players with more than 100 yards rushing, Curtis Harrison and Matt Hayes each had more than 100 yards rushing in a 21-14 win over Boron in Division 13.

• Those Division 1 winners scored a bunch of points: Mater Dei 63, Vista Murrieta 30; Rancho Cucamonga 42, Mission Viejo 36; St. John Bosco 54, Santa Margarita 14; and Centennial of Corona 66, Chaminade of West Hills 35.

• Three Santa Ana public schools played Friday. Two won: Santa Ana, in Division 13, and Segerstrom in Division 12. Godinez lost to Rancho Christian of Temecula, coached by ex-Orange Lutheran coach Jim Kunau, in Division 13.

• If there is a surprise team in the semifinals, it might be La Habra. The Highlanders, who finished second to Buena Park in the Freeway League and went into the Division 2 playoffs with a 6-4 record, have beaten two league champions in a row in the playoffs: Marmonte League champion Oaks Christian of Westlake Village in the first round; and on Friday they knocked out Citrus Belt League champ Redlands East Valley in the second round. They play another league champion, second-seeded Murrieta Valley, in the semifinals Friday at La Habra High.

Contact the writer: sfryer@scng.com


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