First there was Mason White blocking kicks, making interceptions and catching touchdowns as one of the best participant within the City Section in 2019. Then there was Arlis Boardingham making tackles, catching passes and doing every little thing as one of the best participant within the City Section in 2021. They helped Lake Balboa Birmingham High blitz by means of its City opponents.
The Patriots have the City Section’s finest participant once more in junior receiver-cornerback Peyton Waters, who helps develop on a 33-game unbeaten streak in opposition to City opponents.
“He’s next guy up after Mason and Arlis,” coach Jim Rose stated. “The kids look up to him now. Last year he was more of a role player. Now he’s the guy we look to. If he does well, we’re going to do well.”
Waters triggered main issues for Wilmington Banning within the Open Division semifinals Friday evening. He caught a 31-yard landing cross from Kingston Tisdell, then scored on a blocked punt within the first quarter. Birmingham (7-4) went on to a dominant 42-7 street victory to earn a visit to the championship recreation Saturday at Valley College in opposition to Garfield, which defeated Eagle Rock 38-20.
At a nonetheless rising 6 toes 2 and 170 kilos, Waters is giving school recruiters one thing to consider — whether or not he’s higher as a cornerback or receiver. The identical predicament occurred with Boardingham final season (he’s now a decent finish at Florida).
“Waters is definitely their stud,” Banning coach Raymond Grajeda stated,
Birmingham knocked Banning out of the playoffs final season and defeated the 12-time City champions within the 2019 ultimate. This Banning group provided a distinct problem. Gone was the grind-it-out group, changed by an offense that may cross the ball with quarterback Robert Guerrero. But the Patriots’ protection received a fourth-down sack from Maynor Morales within the first half and by no means regarded again, opening a 28-7 halftime lead.
The Patriots’ younger however enhancing offensive line, led by brothers Nick and Bo Tonga, saved punishing the Pilots, clearing the way in which for working backs Morgan Naiim and Ronnell Hewitt, every of whom scored two touchdowns. Naiim rushed for 215 yards in 20 carries and had a 66-yard landing run to begin the third quarter. Hewitt, a freshman, had 80 yards dashing.
“The line played great,” Rose stated. “There were holes all night for the running backs. They should buy them dinner.”
Thanksgiving dinner subsequent week won’t ever style higher for Birmingham after they earned the appropriate to observe on Thursday morning, then take pleasure in turkey legs, stuffing and mashed potatoes within the night in preparation for enjoying in one other Open Division ultimate.
Birmingham began the season dropping 4 of its first 5 in opposition to Southern Section opponents, then did its traditional turnaround in opposition to City Section groups, although the closeness of some scores had individuals questioning if the Patriots might actually make one other title run. Last week’s double time beyond regulation win over No. 2-seeded Venice gave the No. 7 Patriots an enormous enhance in confidence.
They have been by no means threatened Friday evening and with continued enchancment, they’re a 12 months forward of their anticipated progress contemplating the group is stuffed with underclassmen in beginning roles.
Ace Acosta and Jojo Adams had interceptions for Birmingham.