Santa Barbara High football pulled out a thrilling 41-35 double-overtime win over St. Paul in the opening round of the CIF-SS Division 4 playoffs last Friday.
The victory set up a quarterfinals faceoff between the Golden Tornado and Corona Del Mar this Friday at Peabody Stadium at 7 p.m.
Here is a look at how each team got to the quarterfinals and a preview of the matchup.
Santa Barbara High (No. 99 on Calpreps.com)
The Golden Tornado is coming off their most tightly-contested game of the season, which ended in them extending their winning streak to a whopping eight games.
Quarterback Abel Renteria has continued his strong senior season, accumulating 21 total touchdowns while providing value with his big arm and his strong running.
Meanwhile, Koa Herrera has totaled 810 yards on the ground and scored 10 total touchdowns to complement Kai Mault and Winston Bartley, who each have over 500 receiving yards and four touchdowns on the season.
The Santa Barbara defense, which has been a dominant force for most of the year, gave up the second-most points they have all season last week against St. Paul.
Before then, the Golden Tornado had strung together three straight shutouts to end the regular season and hadn’t allowed more than 10 points since Sept. 1.
Corona Del Mar (No. 68 on Calpreps.com)
The Sea Kings finished their regular season with a record 5-5, completing their rugged Sunset League schedule with a 2-3 mark.
Along with Corona Del Mar, the league features Los Alamitos (Division 2), Edison (Division 2) and Newport Harbor (Division 4).
Offensively, the Sea Kings have scored 25.5 points per game this season and have found some success as of late, scoring at least 40 points in each of the last two games, including a round-one victory over Paraclete by a score of 40-21.
Senior quarterback Kaleb Annett has turned in a solid season, passing for 184 yards per game while totaling 21 touchdowns with just six interceptions.
Annett has leaned on his top target, senior wide receiver Russell Weir, quite a bit throughout the year. Weir has accumulated 55 receptions for 763 yards and seven touchdowns.
On the other side of the ball, Corona Del Mar has allowed 24.6 points per game and has held its opponent to 21 points or less in six out of 11 games this year.
This will be a game between two teams on a roll with the Golden Tornado going for nine wins in a row and the Sea Kings coming off a dominant 40-21 in their postseason opener.
The matchup taking place at Peabody Stadium obviously bodes well for Santa Barbara High, as Corona Del Mar will have almost a four-hour drive to make before the game and the Dons faithful have proven to pack the stands week in and week out.
In between the sidelines, the Golden Tornado defense will need to put together a better showing than they did last week to slow down Annett and the Sea King offense.
Meanwhile, Corona Del Mar will have to limit the big plays by the Santa Barbara High offense, as they have proven to be critical in either keeping the Golden Tornado in the game or helping them pull away early.
The Sea Kings have played much tougher opponents up to this point in the season, which could tilt the odds in favor of them, but Santa Barbara High has plenty of experience across its roster.
This will be a battle between two hot teams, meaning the game could very well be decided by which team makes fewer unforced errors in the form of turnovers and penalties.