By Jacob Wilson/Garden Grove Journal
Three out of four ain’t bad. In fact it’s incredible. But two out of three would be even better.
Garden Grove will play in the CIF Southern Division championships for the third time in four years this Saturday at 2 p.m. after beating Laguna Beach 35-21 in the semifinals.
The Argonauts face the defending champion Corona Del Mar Sea Kings at Angel Stadium. If the Argonauts win, they’ll be champions for the second time in three years.
“They have a well-balanced offense and a physical defense,” Garden Grove Head Coach Willy Puga said of the Sea Kings. “We’ll need to take care of the football and make them work.”
Garden Grove lost to La Mirada in the finals in 2009. In 2010 the Argonauts beat Beckman to win the school’s first CIF championship.
This year, the Argonauts are 11-2 overall and have won eight straight games, including three playoff wins. The Sea Kings are also 11-2 overall but carry a nine-game win streak into this week’s game.
Unlike some of the high-scoring teams the Argonauts have met and beaten this year, Corona Del Mar’s main strength is defense. The team gives up just 12 points per game and has three shutouts in three playoff games, including a 25-0 win over Woodbridge in the semifinals.
The Sea Kings beat Woodbridge twice this season. Garden Grove lost to Woodbridge 37-30 in Week Two.
But the Sea Kings can score as well, averaging 30 points per game. Quarterback Cayman Carter is a dual threat, rushing for 70 yards per game and throwing for over 140.
Running back Kai Wilson has rushed for over 1000 yards and averages more than 90 yards per game. The senior gains eight yards per carry.
The Argonauts also have a well-balanced offense and a physical defense, perhaps the most physical in the Southern Division.
Quarterback Angel Martinez leads the team on the field and knows the team will have to play its best to beat the Sea Kings.
“We have to leave it all out on the field,” he said.
C.J. Del Real leads a three-headed rushing attack that includes brothers Maze and Sione Masoe. The rotation keeps opponents off -balance, Puga said.
“It starts with the guys up front,” Puga said, praising his offensive line. “They create some big holes to run through.”
After finally winning its first CIF championship in 2010, the Argonauts are one win away from being champions again. They now expect to win.
“Our defense is doing really good,” sophomore wide receiver Austen Christian said. “If our offense hooks it up, we’ll beat Corona Del Mar.”