Saturday, May 18, 2024

Granada Hills knocks out Cleveland, reaches City Section title game

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GRANADA HILLS — The Granada Hills football team reached the CIF LA City Section Divison 1 championship game with a 48-12 victory over Cleveland.

Granada Hills beat West Valley League foe Cleveland and will play the winner of Narbonne-Palisades in the championship game next Saturday at LA Valley College.

“The guys have really worked hard for a full calendar year to put themselves in a position to play for a championship.” Granada coach Bucky Brooks said. “We’re really excited, it’s been a long time coming for Granada, so we’ll see if we can play our best next week and get it done.”

Running back Dijon Stanley, a Utah commit, led the way for Granada in their wing-T offense running the ball 25 times for 195 yards and three touchdowns. Stanley was also tasked on with guarding Cleveland’s top receiver Kory Hall who was held to one catch for 36 yards.

“It’s hard to beat the same team twice. We didn’t want to come out here stagnant.” Stanley said. “Granada hasn’t been to the championship since like the 70s so we want to win it all this year.”

Granada’s defensive line made it tough on Cleveland quarterback Emiliano Lopez sacking him three times. Defensive end John Williamson had 1.5 sacks in the game.

“Our defense played really well. We’re more of a second half defensive team that puts together all the adjustments and figures out their trickery.” Williamson said.

Granada Hills’ DJ Richmond finished the game with 13 carries for 132 yards and two touchdowns. Darrell Stanley, cousin of Dijon, ran the ball eight times for 36 yards and also had an interception in the first half. Kanye Martin had the first score of the game for Granada and ran the ball seven times for 38 yards with a touchdown.

After the scoring on its first play from scrimmage, Cleveland wasn’t able to get much of anything going on offense. Lopez finished 7 of 20 for 170 yards and two touchdowns and one interception. Starting running back Donovan Powell had only three carries for 12 yards and Steven Ha had a touchdown reception for the Cavs on their first drive in the second half.

“We hit great strides this season,” said Cleveland coach Peter Gunny. “We deserved to be here, we fought really hard to get here and I think Cleveland’s gonna be in the mix year in and year out as we build this program.”

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