Week 11 football preview

Saugus' Vinny Gallagher (33) resists an attempt to tackle him by West Ranch players during Friday night's game. October 22, 2021. Bobby Block / The Signal.

Editor’s note: The following preview was published before it was known that the Saugus-Valencia game has been canceled due to a COVID-19 outbreak at Valencia High School. For details on that, see related story.

By Ryan Menzie 

Signal Sports Writer  

The final week of the Santa Clarita Valley football regular season leaves teams one more chance to fight for any remaining playoff spots. Of course, there’s also still a Foothill League champion to be decided — and a matchup that offers a chance at redemption.  

With the storylines heading into this week, here is the schedule for the final regular season matchups for SCV football: 

Valencia vs. Saugus  

The Valencia Vikings (4-4, 2-2) will play the Saugus Centurions (8-1, 4-0) on Friday at 7 p.m. at College of the Canyons. The Vikings had their streak of 11 Foothill League titles in a row broken last year in their final regular-season game. Against who? The Centurions.  

The Vikings have their chance of redemption from last season, although they are out of the race for the Foothill League title, but can give West Ranch a chance of winning a share of the title.  

The Vikings are coming off a 28-14 win against Golden Valley, while Saugus is coming off its fifth win in a row, a big 42-8 victory against West Ranch, securing at least a share of the league title.  

West Ranch vs. Hart 

The West Ranch Wildcats (7-2, 3-1) take on the Hart Indians (3-6, 2-2) on Friday at 7 p.m. at Valencia. The Wildcats need to win this game in order for at least a chance of sharing the Foothill League title, while the Indians are still fighting for a playoff spot.  

Indians head coach Rick Herrington and his team know they need to play well in this big game in order for a chance to keep their season from ending.  

“They’re a really good team. Hopefully our team can keep playing the defense they’ve been playing to make it tough on them,” said Herrington. “Other than last week, West Ranch has been putting up numbers on the board. They have a darn good team who can run the ball or throw the ball deep on us. We just have to go out there and play our best and hopefully come out with a win.” 

Golden Valley vs. Canyon 

The Golden Valley Grizzlies (3-5, 1-3) go up against the Canyon Cowboys (2-6, 0-4) on Friday at 7 p.m. at Canyon. The Cowboys search for their first league win while the Grizzlies look to end their season on a strong note. 

Grizzlies head coach Dan Kelley understands the importance of each league game, even if it is the last game of the season.  

Canyon quarterback Landon Naasz (9) looks to pass against Hart defenders Vince Tiscareno (55) and Cole Spivey (10) at Canyon High on Friday, 102221. Dan Watson/The Signal

“We haven’t been able to play a perfect game in quite some time, so we’re going to try to play as perfect a game as possible,” said Kelley. “We’ve had the same mentality all year, knowing your assignments in all aspects of the game and doing it to our full capability. Canyon is aggressive and they have athletes that do a great job. We just need to find weaknesses and work on the things that we do and do them right.” 

For Cowboys head coach Joe Maiale, the message for his team, besides winning, is to enjoy their final moments together, especially as seniors.  

“It’s really about the seniors enjoying the time they had here,” said Maiale. “Spring season they didn’t have much of a season and this will be the last time together with this group of guys. Being a part of something bigger than yourself. As for Golden Valley, they have a really talented team and are very well coached. We just have to take care of things fundamentally to be successful.” 

The rest of the SCV football schedule  

Trinity Classical Academy (7-2, 3-1) is scheduled to play against Riverside Prep (3-6, 2-2) on Friday at 7 p.m. at Riverside Prep. 

Santa Clarita Christian (0-8) is scheduled to play against Mammoth (7-1) on Friday at 6 p.m. at Mammoth.  

Castaic (4-4) will play Covina (6-3, 2-0) on Thursday at 4 p.m. at Castaic.  

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