Mater Dei's Raphael Jones, right, and teammates are unbeaten as they head into their Trinity League opener against Santa Margarita on Friday.

Fryer: Trinity League still going strong


Five of the Trinity League’s six football teams are in the California top 25. The one not in the state top 25 was ranked earlier this season.

The Trinity League teams completed the nonleague portion of their schedules with a combined record of 23-7. That’s an excellent cumulative record, considering the quality of opponents that Trinity teams play.

Trinity League teams have star players all over the field, including at the all-important quarterback position.

So, is this the deepest the Trinity League has ever been?

“This is the best the league’s been since I’ve been here,” said Chuck Petersen, in his fifth season coaching Orange Lutheran. “But every year I say the same thing, ‘Oh, this year the league’s better than it was last year.’”

In last week’s state top 25 by, the Trinity League’s St. John Bosco was No. 2 (behind Centennial of Corona), Mater Dei was No. 3, Santa Margarita was No. 11, JSerra was No. 24 and Servite was No. 25. That top 25 won’t change much this week because many top 25 teams, including the Trinity League teams, did not play last week.

Trinity League teams, like most teams in six-team leagues, played five nonleague games starting with Week 0 in late August, then used their bye-week opportunity last week before starting league play this week.

In the Trinity League this Friday, St. John Bosco plays Servite at Cerritos College, JSerra plays Orange Lutheran at Orange Coast College and Santa Margarita plays Mater Dei at Santa Ana Stadium.

That week off last week gave Trinity League coaches two weeks to prepare for the first league game. That’s great, right?

“Actually,” JSerra coach Jim Hartigan said, “it’s easier when it’s just one week. With two weeks, it’s almost like there’s too much time to keep thinking about everything.”


Most O.C. leagues begin league action this week.

Orange and Santa Ana, both 5-0, play their Golden West League opener Thursday at Santa Ana Stadium. Orange is 5-0 for the first time since 1925. The world was still watching silent movies in 1925.

Tustin (4-1) plays Cypress (4-1) in an Empire League opener Thursday at Western High. Those look like the two best teams in the Empire League.

Mission Viejo (6-0) is at Tesoro (4-2) on Friday in a South Coast League opener. Tesoro, San Clemente (4-2) and San Juan Hills (5-1) seem similar, in terms of quality although the strengths of those three teams are not the same. We will get a good idea about just how above and beyond Mission Viejo is in the South Coast League.

Westminster (2-3) is at Segerstrom (5-0) on Friday. Segerstrom is the Golden West’s third undefeated team. Westminster annually is a league contender.

La Habra (2-3) plays Troy (4-1) on Friday at Fullerton High. Is the rest of the league finally closing in on La Habra? This one will be an indicator.


Just to make sure everyone knows the facts after all the numbers got re-crunched … Mission Viejo coach Bob Johnson is Orange County’s all-time wins leaders. He passed recently retired Los Alamitos coach John Barnes last month. Johnson has 328 O.C. wins, 197 of them at Mission Viejo.


Saddleback Valley Christian quarterback Cade Henjum passed for 486 yards, breaking his school single-game record, and five touchdowns and ran for 151 yards and a touchdown in a loss to Boron on Friday.

Edgar Galindo of Los Amigos rushed for 260 yards, 197 in the first half, and two touchdowns against Saddleback. The Lobos rushed for 404 yards and averaged 9 yards a carry.

Jack Johnson ran for 246 yards and four scores in Crean Lutheran’s win over Capistrano Valley Christian.

Quarterbacks Chase Garbers of Corona del Mar and Matt McDonald of Mission Viejo continued their standout seasons. Garbers threw for 315 yards and five touchdowns in a win over Trabuco Hills. McDonald passed for 350 yards and seven touchdowns, the second-most in O.C. history, in the win over El Toro.


Corona del Mar in the near future is not going to pursue playing home games at Orange Coast College. Misconduct by some Corona del Mar students at the “Battle of the Bay” game against Newport Harbor last month splintered the CdM-OCC relationship.

Corona del Mar athletic director Don Grable said the Sea Kings already had this year’s remaining home games scheduled for Estancia High, and 2017 home games will be at Newport Harbor’s Davidson Field, which is currently undergoing renovation.


Here is the rule on a running clock: A running clock is in effect when the point differential is 35 or more points at the start of the fourth quarter, or at any time during the fourth quarter; if, during the fourth quarter, the point differential is less than 35, the running clock remains in effect; and a running clock can be initiated during the first three quarters if both teams’ coaches and the referee agree upon it once the point differential reaches 35 or more.


Four O.C. teams are No. 1 in their CIF-Southern Section playoff divisions: Mater Dei, in Division 1; Katella, Division 11; Segerstrom, Division 12; and Santa Ana, Division 13.

Also, two county teams are No. 2 in their divisions. Edison is No. 2 (behind 4-2 La Mirada, which has wins over Orange Lutheran and San Clemente); St. Margaret’s is No. 2 in Division 7 (behind 5-0 El Segundo).


El Modena was ranked No. 2 in Division 8 last week. The Vanguards then beat Yorba Linda, which last week was undefeated and at No. 8 in Division 8. This week, El Modena dropped to No. 3 in the rankings.

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