Football

Bay Area high school football 2023: Week 5 preview, schedule

Week 5 of the high school football season is here.

After all eight of its schools had last week off, the West Catholic Athletic League schedule gets started with Archbishop Mitty playing at St. Francis on Friday and a duel between Riordan and St. Ignatius and Bellarmine and Valley Christian on Saturday.

In what could be a preview of an upper-division NorCal title game, De La Salle will travel to Folsom for what has become a yearly matchup between Bay Area and Sacramento-area powers. 

Campolindo will face off against Monte Vista in a game that could have massive North Coast Section Division I playoff implications.  

The Bay Area News Group will have complete coverage this weekend and all season. If you have not already, please sign up for a digital subscription. Your contributions keep us going.

Here are this week’s top matchups and schedule:

Friday

No. 2 De La Salle (2-2) at Folsom (3-1), 7 p.m.: This is the fifth meeting between the teams since 2021. They have split the previous four, with De La Salle prevailing in the most recent matchup, a 17-14 victory on the road last December in a NorCal regional championship game. Since opening this season with losses to Orange Lutheran 35-14 and Serra 28-0, DLS has gotten back to its roots — i.e. the ground game. In last week’s victory at home over explosive St. Mary’s-Stockton, the Concord powerhouse ran for 280 yards in 41 attempts and passed eight times for 21 yards. QB Toa Faavae (seven carries, 139 yards) and RB Dominic Kelley (20 carries, 104 yards) were the leading rushers. Can’t imagine the game plan being any different against Folsom. Hard to score if the other team controls the ball. Folsom had last week off. The Bulldogs won the previous two weeks, over Edison-Stockton 48-15 and Turlock 49-7, after losing at Serra 21-14. The longtime Sacramento-area power is led offensively by two sophomores, QB Ryder Lyons and WR Jameson Powell. Lyons has passed for 1,118 yards and 11 TDs while completing 68.5% of his attempts. Powell has 29 catches for 403 yards and three TDs. Calpreps.com’s computer picks Folsom, 21-17. — Darren Sabedra

No. 11 Liberty (3-1) at No. 3 San Ramon Valley (4-0), 7 p.m.: San Ramon Valley’s loaded offense got the better of McClymonds’ stingy defense last week, with the Wolves winning 35-7. SRV will get another test against Liberty. SRV senior Luke Baker has passed for 1,142 yards and 13 touchdowns against great competition, and running back John Pau Mendoza scored three touchdowns against Mack. Junior Owen Scott leads the team with 457 receiving yards, and senior Hunter Brinton has four receiving touchdowns. Linebackers Will Catterton and Marco Jones each have over 40 tackles. Liberty is a last-second field goal away against Los Gatos from being 4-0. The Lions have won their other three games by an average of nearly 40 points. Sophomore RB Jaxon Bell has been a revelation, rushing for 746 yards and 12 touchdowns. Senior wide receiver Ryan McKendry has caught five touchdowns and averaged 28 yards per catch, and junior quarterback Sage Robertson has thrown for eight touchdowns on only 44 attempts. Junior edge rusher Zaire Calhoun is Liberty’s most athletic defender. The (artificial) intelligentsia known as calpreps.com’s computer has SRV dominating 49-17. — Joseph Dycus

No. 14 Mitty (3-0) at No. 13 St. Francis (1-2), 7 p.m.: The Mitty players aren’t happy when reading they’re a young team that might have trouble duplicating last season’s success when they went from 1-9 in 2021 to 9-4. The Monarchs could help put that theme to rest against St. Francis. Despite a 1-2 start, the Lancers are solid favorites in this longtime rivalry that will kickoff West Catholic Athletic League play for both teams. Calpreps.com picks St. Francis to win by 19 points (40-21). The Lancers have played a tough non-league schedule that has resulted in double-digit losses to Helix-La Mesa and De La Salle. St. Francis’ lone victory was 28-21 over Monterey Trail-Elk Grove. Mitty has knocked off James Logan, Aptos and Santa Teresa, a trio that’s a combined 2-10. It’s unlikely Mitty coach Danny Sullivan expected all three teams to be struggling when he set up that schedule. The key for the Monarchs could be whether running back AJ Cenizal is healthy after missing the Santa Teresa game two weeks ago. Elijah Bautista stepped in and gained 142 yards with two touchdowns. Cenizal and Bautista together could allow Mitty to control the time of possession. St. Francis also prefers to run, led by junior Kingston Keanaaina. He is averaging 128.7 yards per game and has an offer from Arizona. Defensively, Chase Cahoon, Jackson Cahoon and Ryan Oberweis-Manion give the Lancers a strong set of linebackers. – Mike Lefkow

No. 22 Campolindo (1-1-1) at No. 16 Monte Vista (3-1), 7 p.m.: Monte Vista’s hot start came to an end at Amador Valley as the Mustangs couldn’t keep pace with a surprisingly explosive Dons team in a 41-34 loss. Monte Vista junior Brayden Turner threw for three TDs and 343 yards, and 6-foot-2 junior RB Julian McMahon rushed for 189 yards and two touchdowns on 13 carries. Senior wide receiver Jacob Shehata should also test Campolindo after catching two touchdowns to go along with 189 yards last week. Campo had a bye last week after enduring three grueling games – a two-overtime win over Vanden-Fairfield, a 6-0 loss to Amador Valley and a 14-14 tie against Windsor. Senior Isaiah Ortiz and junior Max Robeson have split Campo’s quarterbacking duties. Sophomore runner Micah Parker has been a pleasant surprise, rushing for 207 yards and a touchdown as the lead back. Fellow sophomore Crosby Kelly has also stood out as a second-year player, compiling 2.5 sacks for a defense coach Kevin Macy hopes can slow down Monte Vista. CalPreps’ computer projects Monte Vista to win 28-21. With 11 schools competing for eight spots in the NCS Division I playoffs, the winner on Friday might have an edge in seeding come November. — Joseph Dycus

Milpitas (3-0) at No. 18 California (2-2), 7 p.m.: The Grizzlies are ranked in the Bay Area News Group Top 25 and last week lost by three points at No. 4 Pittsburg. Still, when Milpitas comes to visit Friday night, most eyes will be on the Trojans. After a 3-0 start, some people are proclaiming the Trojans are back – or at least closing in – on their pre-pandemic days. From 2008-2019, Milpitas was 115-36-1, including two CIF state titles and three Central Coast Section championships, all under current coach Kelly King. Players such as DL Vita Vea (Tampa Bay Bucs) and CB Tariq Bracy (Notre Dame) wore the Trojans’ blue and gold. But things changed in 2020, and Milpitas began this season with a 5-21 mark over the past three years. Now, coaches on King’s staff and some on opposite sidelines say the Trojans are looking more like the team that once held its own against the CCS elite. The Trojans won their first three games by an average 40-14 score. They have only trailed once, by 7-0 at Independence in the second game of the season. The Trojans responded with 34 unanswered points. California, however, is likely the best team Milpitas will face this season, including playoffs. The Grizzlies average 369 yards per game, divided almost equally between the run and pass. Senior QB Jayden Macedo has thrown for 10 TDs. Leading rusher Devan Love is averaging 117.5 yards per game. Top wideout Nick Fox averages 117 yards per contest in receptions. The Grizzlies have six defensive players with 20 or more tackles, led by Cole Fokas with 30. Milpitas is a running team behind a big offensive line. Senior Jacob Alvarado, a converted receiver, has 639 rushing yards in three games. Leading tackler, junior LB Jacob Souza, has 27 stops. One final note: California’s opponents thus far are 13-5. The Trojans’ opponents are 3-7. – Mike Lefkow 

Saturday

Bellarmine (1-2) at No. 5 Valley Christian (3-0), 6 p.m.: Valley Christian won one game last season and lost to Bellarmine 37-19 to close out the schedule. But the longtime San Jose powerhouse, still led by coach Mike Machado, figured to be better this season. That has certainly been the case through three nonleague games. Valley improved to 3-0 two weeks ago as Ekiah McLemore ran for three TDs in a rout of Hollister. The sophomore had two TDs the previous week against Salinas. Valley opened the season with a 16-15 victory over Wilcox. Bellarmine, under new coach David Diaz-Infante, got off to a thrilling start, beating Menlo-Atherton 17-14 in a season opener. But the Bells followed that victory with a 40-0 loss to McCymonds in which Bellarmine finished with 12 yards. Bellarmine lost the following week, too, but showed some progress in that one, rallying from a significant deficit before falling at Monte Vista 40-30. Parker Threatt scored three touchdowns and had a combined 295 yards rushing and passing against Monte Vista. Calpreps picks Valley to win on Saturday, 31-13. — Darren Sabedra

Schedule

Thursday, Sept. 21

SOUTH BAY/PENINSULA

BVAL West Valley

Lick at Del Mar, 7:15 p.m.

San Jose at Evergreen Valley, 7:15 p.m.

Non-league

Christopher at Gilroy, 7 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 22

EAST BAY

DAL Foothill

Acalanes at College Park, 7 p.m.

Las Lomas at Benicia, 7 p.m.

Northgate at Miramonte, 7 p.m.

MVAL-WACC Shoreline

American at San Lorenzo, 4 p.m.

Newark Memorial vs. Kennedy-Fremont at Washington-Fremont, 7 p.m.

Non-league

Alameda at Encinal, 7 p.m.

Antioch at Tennyson, 7 p.m.

Berean Christian at Hercules, 7 p.m.

Berkeley at Castro Valley, 7 p.m.

Campolindo at Monte Vista, 7 p.m.

Deer Valley at Dougherty Valley, 7 p.m.

Foothill at Amador Valley, 7 p.m.

Freedom at De Anza, 7 p.m.

Liberty at San Ramon Valley, 7 p.m.

Logan at Heritage, 7 p.m.

Mt. Eden at Concord, 7 p.m.

Novato at Richmond, 7 p.m.

Granada vs. San Leandro at Burrell Field in San Leandro, 7 p.m.

SOUTH BAY/PENINSULA

BVAL Santa Teresa-Valley

Overfelt at Willow Glen, 7 p.m.

BVAL West Valley

Gunderson at Hill, 7:15 p.m.

Prospect at Yerba Buena, 7 p.m.

PAL Lake

Cupertino at Saratoga, 7 p.m.

Mills at Jefferson, 7 p.m.

Monta Vista at Gunn, 7 p.m.

South San Francisco at Lynbrook, 7 p.m.

West Catholic

Mitty at St. Francis, 7 p.m.

Serra vs. Sacred Heart Cathedral at Kezar Stadium, 7 p.m.

Non-league

Branham at Live Oak, 7:15 p.m.

Leland at Pioneer, 7:15 p.m.

Lincoln at Silver Creek, 7:15 p.m.

Oak Grove at Independence, 7:15 p.m.

Palo Alto at Menlo-Atherton, 7 p.m.

Santa Teresa at Piedmont Hills, 7:15 p.m.

INTERSECTIONAL

Balboa at Skyline, 7 p.m.

De La Salle at Folsom, 7 p.m.

Dublin at Kimball, 7 p.m.

Fremont-Oakland at Livermore, 7:30 p.m.

Lowell at The King’s Academy, 7 p.m.

Milpitas at California, 7 p.m.

Mt. Diablo at Castlemont, 7 p.m.

Oakland at Washington-San Francisco, 3 p.m.

Vacaville at El Cerrito, 7 p.m.

Wilcox vs. Edison-Huntington Beach at Bakersfield College, 7 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 23

EAST BAY

MVAL-WACC Shoreline

Piedmont at Arroyo, 2 p.m.

Non-league

Bethel at Vallejo, TBA

Bishop O’Dowd at Marin Catholic, 2 p.m.

Cardinal Newman at St. Mary’s-Berkeley, 1:30 p.m.

Moreau Catholic at Salesian, 1:30 p.m.

SOUTH BAY/PENINSULA

West Catholic

Bellarmine at Valley Christian, 6 p.m.

St. Ignatius at Riordan, 2 p.m.

INTERSECTIONAL

Mission vs. Irvington at Washington-Fremont, 5 p.m.

Ygnacio Valley at Galileo, 2 p.m.

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