St. Francis Set For Finals

Max Garrison punched in a late touchdown to ice it for St. Francis.

By Alex Gonzalez

La Canada — St. Francis defensive lineman, Racin Delgatty picked off La Serna’s Jake Long’s pass and four plays later Max Garrison punched in the game’s clinching touchdown propelling the Golden Knights to a 20-0 semifinals win over La Serna Friday night at Jim Bonds stadium. 

With the win, St. Francis advances to the the Division 4 Final and will look to be crowned champions when they will host Long Bach Poly next Friday night. 

“It’s a crazy accomplishment. This whole team has been dreaming this moment,” Said Garrison after the game. “I’m so proud of the team and coach Harrington came in here and gave us a great gameplan and were off to the finals.” 

The St. Francis Defense put the screws to La Serna.

The road to the title game did not come as easy as the score indicated. Both the Golden Knights and Lancers exchanged possession of the ball with no points for the first 23 minutes of the first half. 

La Serna had an opportunity at three points on their first possession but their 35-yard field goal was blocked. 

It was not until the final seconds of the second quarter when the Golden Knights booted a 27-yard field goal, thanks to Clint Geryak.

With possession given to the Golden Knights to start the second half, the offense relied on Garrison to lead the way for the game’s first score. 

The second half drive started with Jack Jacobs connecting with Garrison for 26 yards. Then after Garrison picked up 27 yards on two carries, that paved the way for Jacobs to sneak his way into the end zone with 8:12 in the third quarter. 

The Lancers tried to counter with a scoring drive on the ensuing possession but the receiver screen pass to Jake George was called back due to an Illegal Formation penalty halting the touchdown play. The Lancers were not able to recover and turned the ball over on downs two plays later. 

After Geryak converted his second field goal of the night to give St. Francis a 13-0 edge, La Serna tried to put points on the board but their next possession.

However, that did not work because Owen Long was stripped at the St. Francis 1-yard line and was recovered by Mher Baranian with 5:42 left in regulation. 

St. Francis was able to end the Lancers’ hopes for a comeback when Delgatty picked off Long’s pass on the La Serna 23 yard line with 2:53 left to play. The Golden Knights wasted no time to convert the turnover into points. 

Garrison took the handoff and bounced out to the outside corner where he out ran the defense to reach pay dirt. 

13 Comments to "St. Francis Set For Finals"

  1. Just An Ol’ Has Been's Gravatar Just An Ol’ Has Been
    December 1, 2021 - 12:24 pm | Permalink

    LS Jugger

    Not sure if you’re looking at the whole scope of that referee’s viewpoint. If you look at the picture, you’ll see pretty clearly that the ball is inside the SF 32 (almost the 31) based on the center’s alignment and helmet location. You’ll also notice that most of the SF front is standing upright and they are all around their 31 yard line. Now take a look at the receiver on the short side of the field. He is clearly a yard and a half (almost 2yds) further up in comparison to all three of those receivers to the wide side. If you draw that imaginary line from each referee to the ball placement, the viewpoint from that referee would clearly show that none of those three receivers to the wide side of the field are on the LOS (line of scrimmage).

    Mistakes happen. But I can assure you that the referee who threw that flag did not make the mistake on that play.

    The one thing you are correct about is that it was “another great season in the books for La Serna”.

    If you are a parent, kudos to your kid on his team’s great season. If you’re a coach, don’t let that play eat at you too much. You had a great season. It’s in the books. Now back to the drawing board for 2022.

  2. La Serna Juggernaut's Gravatar La Serna Juggernaut
    November 30, 2021 - 4:22 pm | Permalink

    The middle receiver is on the line and in front of the other two making it a legal formation on 1 of the 2 TD’s La Serna had called back.
    2 Tugs called back and a fumble at the 1 yard line.
    Rough night.

    Another great season in the books for La Serna.
    8 of the last 11 seasons advanced to at least the CIF Semi-Finals. Unreal.

  3. HS Football Fans.'s Gravatar HS Football Fans.
    November 22, 2021 - 7:37 am | Permalink

    Doesn’t matter who won. POLY going to destroy whomever they play in D4

  4. Just a Fan's Gravatar Just a Fan
    November 21, 2021 - 10:24 am | Permalink

    Just An Ol’ Has Been,

    Nothing else needs to be said. You have captured it so well. Happy Thanksgiving!

  5. Just An Ol’ Has Been's Gravatar Just An Ol’ Has Been
    November 21, 2021 - 8:36 am | Permalink

    I gave it a couple days before I opted to put my thoughts onto this forum. But after watching the SF-LS game and reading some of these comments, I just couldn’t help myself.

    First half thoughts: what a defensive battle!!! Both teams seemed to have sparks offensively but to be turned away by the opposition. Stats for the first half, prove these two teams to be pretty even. The FG just before the half was bound to happen based on how the St Francis’ offense was moving. La Serna’s offense had a chance to get one too, but their OL could not contain the rush up the middle. The penalty thrown on the ensuing kickoff return to negate the George TD, was absolutely warranted. Whether it was 30 yards away or right near the returner, it is the job of the officials to make that call and also it is the responsibility of the players to be disciplined enough to avoid that illegal block.

    The second half obviously tipped to the advantage of SF. Their offense, slowly and methodically, seemed to wear on the LS defense. Patiently waiting for the LS defense to break just enough to get in the endzone and put additional points on the board. The LS offense maintained some drives as well but they didn’t appear to be as successful as they traditionally are by running the ball. It seemed as if they were pressing and felt the need to just throw the ball. As for the George TD reception that was called back for illegal formation; another one that was absolutely warranted by the officials. Both penalties come down to discipline (or the lack of…at least on those plays). LS had their opportunities as the got into the SF red zone multiple times. Ultimately, turnovers proved to be the difference here with a few interceptions and a fumble or two.

    Kudos to both teams for their successful seasons. Whether you agree with the officials’ calls or not, they are human. The film tells the truth. As for parents and coaches coming on here and making negative statements, please tell me there’s more in your life than living vicariously through these young men. For decades, High School sports has always taught young, student-athletes discipline, respect for others and how to overcome adversity. Allow these kids to do so without always having to run to their defense. Allow them to fail occasionally, so they can pick themselves up and go give it another try. Our society has been tarnished enough. Can’t we afford to let these young men play a game that we all love without having to always point the finger in an effort to blame someone else?
    To quote John Wooden, “Be more concerned with your character than your reputation. Because you character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are”.


  6. Waaaa's Gravatar Waaaa
    November 20, 2021 - 9:27 pm | Permalink

    You are the biggest sore loser parent in the San Gabriel valley. Your son is a great player but your antics on twitter and no here are embarrassing, learn to win and lose with class.

  7. LS Fan's Gravatar LS Fan
    November 20, 2021 - 8:40 pm | Permalink

    It was a great season for LS Football. That team did more with having only 5 seniors contribute that any team in recent memory. I did not get to see all games but it was fun watching #7 play. He will do great things in his future. I also saw him go up to sophomore #1 and told him to keep his head up. Class act. I guarantee that whoever #7 parent is it is not the parents of #7.

  8. Illegal Formation's Gravatar Illegal Formation
    November 20, 2021 - 6:05 pm | Permalink

    Actually on the film which reporter escarcega posted you can see the receivers in the bunch on the left side, all 3 of them are behind the line of scrimmage. Any amateur football fan knows you need at least one on the line, hence why you see receivers on most plays confirm with the side judge that they are on the line but not offsides.

    On the block in the back you should be more disappointed that your player is taking unnecessary hits to the opposing team and to make matters worse hitting in the back and not even heads up.

  9. Miracle on Ice's Gravatar Miracle on Ice
    November 20, 2021 - 4:50 pm | Permalink

    Well you should be happy you ain’t playing Poly because you would of got a beating like West Covina did to you guys in the championship game @ home. The worse beating in Cif history. Just look to next year and watch the games from your TV like all the other schools that lost we are playing Friday you ain’t. That’s that…..

  10. Just a Fan's Gravatar Just a Fan
    November 20, 2021 - 3:25 pm | Permalink

    #7 Parent,

    I sure hope this wasn’t really written by #7’s parent! If it was, wow, what a bad look?! Take a page from #7…as soon as #1 fumbled away the ball at the end, he was there to tell him to hold his head up high.

    By the way, what do you think would have happened to the Lancers had they faced of against Poly week?

  11. Saints on the field's Gravatar Saints on the field
    November 20, 2021 - 3:00 pm | Permalink

    Can’t really comment on what was seen on film as I’m not privy to that. LS’s defense was on point and put good pressure on us. LS #7 did make great catches out of horrible passes. If LS doesn’t recruit maybe they should start to with a QB that has an arm.
    We’re moving on. Proud of our team.

  12. Anonymous's Gravatar Anonymous
    November 20, 2021 - 2:17 pm | Permalink

    Take you loss with dignity and class. The way the “Friendly Hills” we don’t recruit kids faithful always talk about other teams after a defeat.

  13. #7 Parent's Gravatar #7 Parent
    November 20, 2021 - 8:46 am | Permalink

    Here is how the article by Alex Gonzalez should read:
    St Francis was very lucky they had priests on their sideline and fat lazy incompetent refs on the field. LS had two touchdowns by star receiver Jake George #7 called back. The first one was a 95 yard kickoff return that was called back by a block in the back that actually happened 30 yards behind George. The second was a screen pass that George took to the house but illegal formation was called. We looked at the film and there was absolutely no illegal formation on LS. That play will be sent to CIF. Enjoy this tainted victory St. Francis and enjoy the DELETED kicking you will receive by Poly on Friday.
    From T. Peterson: Failed to score three times in the red zone including a fumble inside the five which St. Francis recovered. Had a field goal blocked and a pass intercepted by a linemen…and that’s before we even get to the penalties. The first one was clearly a block in the back…flags all over the field. The second one I agreed was questionable but after seeing film it does appear to be an illegal formation. Sorry, not blaming the officials for this one. St. Francis won because they were the better team. La Serna had a great season but they took an L in this one. Gonzo’s story was spot on.

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