San Pedro, Venice earn top billing for City football playoffs

Parity has occurred in the City Section Open Division football playoffs. An eight-team playoff bracket was released on Saturday, with all teams able to emerge victorious, unlike the days when Harbor City Narbonne were the overwhelming favorites no matter what opponent got in the way.

Undefeated San Pedro (10-0) earned the No. 1, with rising No. 2 Venice (8-2), Wilmington Banning (5-5) No. 3, and Eastern League champion Garfield (8-2) No. 4 .

The most intriguing opening game has two-time defending champions Lake Balboa Birmingham (6-4), the No. 7 seed, playing in Venice on November 10. Another great duel has No. 5 Franklin (10-0) at Garfield. The other matchups are No. 8 Eagle Rock (9-1) in San Pedro and Banning, the No. 6 Roosevelt (9-1) receives.

The most influential game of the regular season came on September 1 when San Pedro defeated Venice 20-7. Since then, Venice have won seven straight games, including a 60-14 win over Palisades on Friday night.

“We definitely had our best game of the year in our last game of the regular season and every coach likes that,” said Venice coach Angelo Gasca.

A week off next week gives all eight teams a chance to get healthier. San Pedro will be hoping for the return of injured running back Roman Sanchez, who missed out on the 14-7 win over Banning. Venice gets top defender Cody Premer again. Banning is waiting to hear if defensive end Seth Fao gets clearance to return.

The City Section is still waiting to complete a site for their championship game over Thanksgiving weekend. LA Valley College remains the top contender.

Divisions I, II and III begin their playoffs next week. Granada Hills is No. 1 in Division I, Monroe leads Division II and Chatsworth is No. 1 in Division III.

Southern section: Southern Section soccer fixtures will be released Sunday at 10:00 am based on power rankings. The big question was how many teams will make up the Division 1 bracket. It could be 8, 10 or 12. The Southern Section needs an automatic qualifier to be No. 1 for each of their divisions.

CalPreps’ top 12 are: 1st Mater Dei, 2nd St. John Bosco, 3rd Corona Centennial, 4th Los Alamitos, 5th Long Beach Poly, 6th Mission Viejo, 7th Edison, 8th Santa Margarita, 9th JSerra, 10. Orange Lutheran, 11. Gardena Serra, 12. Chaminade. San Pedro, Venice earn top billing for City football playoffs

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