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High Schools: Football playoff picture clearing up

October 29, 2012|By David Carrillo PeƱaloza
  • Troy Reese, left, and Corona del Mar have proved to be a step above the Pacific Coast League competition.
Troy Reese, left, and Corona del Mar have proved to be a… (KEVIN CHANG, Daily…)

The third phase of the season for some local high school football programs begins after this week.

This week caps the second part of the season: league play. This is also the final week of the regular season and it will determine which area teams qualify for the CIF Southern Section playoffs and which don't.

Two programs are in, Corona del Mar and Estancia, both having clinched Southern Division postseason berths from their respective leagues last week with wins.

Newport Harbor is closing in on a Southwest Division berth and the school's fourth straight playoff appearance.

Costa Mesa is going to need a lot of help to get into the Southern Division playoffs.

One team that is done is Sage Hill. The Lightning are now trying to avoid their first winless season in school history.

The Sea Kings will try to finish Pacific Coast League play undefeated. The league champions close out league play Friday on the road against Beckman at Tustin High. A victory pretty much assures the Sea Kings the Southern Division's top seed. CdM (7-2, 4-0 in league), the defending Southern Division champion, is ranked No. 1 in the division.

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Estancia shares the No. 10 spot in the division with Santa Ana Valley. The Eagles have a shot to move up in the poll if they handle business against Calvary Chapel at Jim Scott Stadium on Friday and Costa Mesa upsets second-ranked Laguna Beach on the same field on Thursday.

Three teams in the Orange Coast League receive automatic entries into the Southern Division playoffs. Laguna Beach (8-0-1, 4-0) and defending league champion Estancia (6-3, 3-1) have two of the berths.

The third is between Costa Mesa (4-5, 2-2) and Godinez (3-6, 2-2). The two schools share third place in league, but Godinez has the nod over the Mustangs because the Grizzlies beat Costa Mesa, 23-21, on Oct. 12.

For Costa Mesa to claim the league's third postseason berth, it needs to stun Laguna Beach and have Godinez lose to Saddleback (3-6, 1-3) on Thursday at Segerstrom High. If the Mustangs don't beat Laguna Beach, their postseason hopes are dead. And the Godinez game won't matter because of the head-to-head tiebreaker it holds against Mesa.

There is a chance for the Mustangs to qualify for the playoffs if they and Godinez each win this week. The Southern Division has one at-large entry, and Coach Wally Grant said beating the No. 2 team in the division would bode well for his Mustangs in their efforts to receive the at-large bid.

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