Football: The Brad Kaaya factor
With one game-changing performance in his first varsity start last week against Sherman Oaks Notre Dame, junior quarterback Brad Kaaya of West Hills Chaminade has changed the way everyone looks at the Eagles.
"They look a little different," Gardena Serra Coach Scott Altenberg said. "They look a little more explosive."
Kaaya completed 20 of 24 passes for 362 yards in a 35-27 win over the Knights. Suddenly, Chaminade has a passing game to go along with running back Terrell Newby.
"I was just waiting for the opportunity," said the 6-foot-4, 210-pound Kaaya.
He was the backup quarterback at Encino Crespi last season as a sophomore. He showed potential when getting the chance to play in a Serra League game against Alemany. He transferred in January and has rotated with senior Reggie Reed. A rib injury slowed his progress, but he made a major jump during a bye week and was given the starting spot.
Now the question is whether last week's performance was a one-time thing or the start of something big? Chaminade (4-1) faces a huge test on Friday against Serra in a Mission League opener at home. The Eagles are still going to use two quarterbacks but Kaaya is starting.
"I've always believed I could do it," Kaaya said.
-- Eric Sondheimer
Photo: Chaminade quarterback Brad Kaaya. Credit: Angela Means.