Football: Birmingham is trying to win the Marine League championship
Yes, the City Section Division I playoffs have begun, but West Valley League champion Lake Balboa Birmingham is trying to prove it's the best team from the Marine League.
The Patriots defeated Banning in a nonleague game and opened the playoffs with a victory over Gardena, another Marine League team. Next up is Marine League power Carson on Friday night, and a win would probably send the Patriots against the Marine League champion, Narbonne, in the semifinals.
It's quite a challenge for Coach Jim Rose, but Isaiah Hastings is running like the All-City running back he is. He had 203 yards rushing against Gardena. And junior receiver London Bell has 10 touchdown passes.
Birmingham will have to make sure it can play well on the road.
"We have to walk in there and not let them intimidate us," Rose said.
And a good start would be wise. Last week against Gardena, Rose said, "We were down, 16-8, before we we woke up."
-- Eric Sondheimer