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Football playoffs: Breakdown and prediction for Division 1

STAFF WRITER

OCVarsity breaks down Division 1 of the CIF-SS football playoffs:

DIVISION 1  

Top seeded teams
1. Mater Dei (10-0)
2. Centennial of Corona (9-1)
3. St. John Bosco (8-2)
4. Mission Viejo (10-0)

O.C. teams in this division
JSerra (5-5)
Mater Dei
Mission Viejo
Orange Lutheran (5-5
Santa Margarita (6-4)
Servite (4-6)
Tesoro (5-5)

Analysis: Whoever ends up celebrating with the CIF trophy on Dec. 3 will forever relish the memory because it’s going to be about as grueling a four-week journey as there’s ever been. This bracket is loaded. No other way of putting it. And for top-seeded Mater Dei, it can’t be understated how important the win over St. John Bosco was in Week 8. The Monarchs find themselves on the top-half of the bracket, opposite the Braves and Centennial of Corona, meaning they’d only have to see one of those two powerhouses, and that would be in the championship game at Angel Stadium. JT Daniels and Co. have looked destined for a championship appearance since week zero, and the Monarchs have a favorable path to the final. Mater Dei opens with Tesoro before getting the winner of Bishop Amat (which the Monarchs beat by 49 points) and Vista Murrieta (which lost to JSerra) in the second round. A semifinal meeting with Mission Viejo is very possible, but the Diablos will first have to survive a first-round meeting with Servite, which will be one of the area’s top first-round matchups. The Friars and the rest of the Trinity League earned playoff berths, but if the regular season told us anything, one of the top four seeds is winning this division. There might even be a distinguishable drop-off after Mater Dei, Centennial and Bosco, the three squads that have routinely pulverized the other teams in this bracket.    

Championship game: Mater Dei over Centennial


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