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Friday Night Lights: Week 7

Dos Pueblos, Santa Barbara play grudge games against Ventura schools

Marcellous Gossett has been a force on defense for Dos Pueblos. Click to view larger
Marcellous Gossett has been a force on defense for Dos Pueblos. (Noozhawk File Photo)

It’s “Grudge Game Week” for the Santa Barbara High and Dos Pueblos football teams as they do battle with the Ventura schools in key Channel League contests on Friday night at home

After a bye last week, Dos Pueblos opens league play against Buena, a team it hasn’t beaten in three years. Santa Barbara takes on defending league champion Ventura in what could be the final football game at the old Peabody Stadium. The Dons and Cougars won their league openers in convincing fashion last Friday.

Santa Barbara and Dos Pueblos have experienced tough times against their opponents in recent years. The Dons felt they were robbed of a winning touchdown in the final seconds at Ventura last year and suffered a 28-24 defeat. Three years ago, Buena knocked the Chargers out of a CIF playoff spot with a 14-7 win. Beating the Bulldogs has been one of DP’s team goals this season.

In other action on Friday, Carpinteria plays its final league tune-up against Trinity Classical of Valencia at Carpinteria Valley Memorial Stadium. Bishop Diego and San Marcos have byes this week. In Condor League 8-man football, Laguna Blanca is home Friday against Villanova Prep at 3:30 p.m., while Cate hosts Orcutt Academy on Saturday at 2 p.m.

Here is a look at Friday’s games:

Ventura (5-2, 1-0, No. 7 in CIF-SS Division 5) at Santa Barbara (3-4, 1-0), 7 p.m. (Radio: 1290 AM) — The Dons better be ready for a physical battle. The Cougars shut down Buena last week behind the play of linebacker Connor McDermott. On offense, they like to pound the ball with running back Broc Mortensen. Quarterback Jack Gutierrez also makes plays with his ability to run. The return of Chris “Tick” Jellison makes Santa Barbara dangerous anywhere on the field. The Dons need to get playmakers like Jeremiah Nicholson and Natani Drati more involved in the attack. A key for Santa Barbara is protecting sophomore quarterback Franky Gamberdella from McDermott and 6-foot-5 defensive end Brandon Gooding (8 sacks, 35 solo tackles). The Dons' defense needs to create turnovers and contain Mortensen. Santa Barbara coach JT Stone has said the Channel League title goes through Ventura. The Pick: Ventura

Buena (3-4, 0-1) at Dos Pueblos (5-1, 0-0, No. 2 in Division 10), 7 p.m. — The Chargers have had this game circled on their calendar for months, as Buena has been a thorn in their side for the last three years. The Bulldogs, who struggled handling Ventura’s aggressive defense last week in a 35-9 loss, will have their hands full again against a DP defense that has dominated opponents. Defensive end Marcellous Gossett has 51 total tackles and 12 sacks and linebacker Isaac Lopez has 42 tackles. Will Yamasaki stepped in for injured Chris Noggle at linebacker and has played solid. On offense, senior quarterback Kellen Roberts (133 of 201 passes for 1,681 yards, 15 TDs, 3 INTs) has done a good job utilizing all the weapons around him.  The Chargers have had two weeks to prepare for this game. The Pick: Dos Pueblos.

Trinity Classical (3-3) at Carpinteria (1-5), 7:30 p.m. — The Warriors look to build confidence heading into Frontier League play next week. They face a team that elected to forfeit its game last week in order to regroup and heal up to complete the rest of the season. “In the best interest of our team and our boys, we knew (we needed to) give them rest,” Trinity Classical Athletic Director Matt Dixon told The Signal newspaper in Santa Clarita. Trinity started playing 11-man football last season. It finished the second half of the schedule with 14 healthy players. Trinity lost one of its top players two weeks ago in a 42-2 loss to Santa Clarita Christian. The Pick: Carpinteria

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