The Valley Gems: Week Four Edition

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Even though the slate is lighter than usual, there is plenty of great action to watch around the Valley in week four of the football schedule. Two Southern Section teams off to hot starts face off in Burbank Thursday night, while two West Valley squads get to test their mettle against city contenders at home. Panorama faces their toughest test yet when they Begin Valley Mission play while the East Valley opens play with two teams looking to make a statement as the front runners for the league title. Here is an in-depth look at the games you need to pay attention to this week in the San Fernando Valley:

Sylmar Spartans (2-2) at Panorama Pythons (4-0) - 9/14 at Panorama High School, 5 pm

The Panorama Pythons are dead set on winning a league title and more this season, and tonight's matchup against Sylmar is a chance to make a strong statement that they are indeed the ones to beat in the Valley Mission. It won't be easy though, as the Spartans are a formidable bunch, especially on the offensive end. Expect Jayce Mims and Will Clark to get plenty of touches for the Spartans if they are to pull the upset on the road.

Village Christian Crusaders (3-1) at Burroughs Bears (4-0) – 9/14 at Burroughs High School, 7 pm

If you want to know why the Bears are off to such a stellar start, look no further than their defensive unit. Burroughs has been stingy in their first four games this season, only allowing 7.5 ppg to the opponents. They will receive their toughest test to date when young phenom Chase Everett brings his high-powered Crusaders offense on the road to try to knock Burroughs from the list of unbeaten squads in the Southern Section.

#20 Dorsey Dons (0-3) at #4 Granada Hills Highlanders (2-1-1) – 9/15 at Granada Hills High School, 7 pm

Don’t let the 0-3 record of the Dons fool you. This is as tough of an opponent as the Highlanders have faced early in their schedule. The Highlanders look as if they have discovered a little of the magic that made them so formidable last season, as the past two weeks have seen them put up massive numbers in the run game. If Dorsey is to win on the road in one of the tougher environments in the City Section, they will have to improve on the 12 points per game scoring average to win.

Westchester Comets (2-2) at #18 Cleveland Cavaliers (3-1) – 9/15 at Cleveland High School, 7:30 pm

It feels like Groundhog Day for the Cavaliers who find themselves in a similar position to where they were last year. A hot start to the season, followed by a tough loss on the road to a non-league city section team that left the team searching for answers. They will try to not repeat the spiral of last season when they take on Westchester at home with a chance to jump right back into the win column. Westchester will have their hands full with one of the most dangerous talents in all the city in Kory Hall, who torched the Hamilton secondary for 9 catches for 149 yards and two touchdowns last week in the Cavs loss on the road.


VST Game of the Week

#25 Arleta Mustangs at Verdugo Hills Dons (3-1) – 9/15 at Verdugo Hills High School, 7 pm

The Spotlight game of the week in the San Fernando Valley is all about the East Valley League, and which team is going to jump into the driver’s seat right out of the gate. Arleta has bounced back strong this season and has the look of a team that can not only win the East Valley but make a run at a city title as well. The Verdugo Hills Dons have also outperformed early expectations and look the part of a title contender themselves. The Mustangs are coming off a statement win against Trinity Classical at home last week, where they put up 307 yards rushing on their way to a 49-8 romp. The Dons are coming off their first loss of the season and will try to get back in the win column in a game that could very well tip the balance in their favor in pursuit of a league championship. They will have to do it without their senior leader Sebastian Herrarte, who will not play at least on offense after having surgery to repair a broken finger this week.

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