SALINAS VALLEY — It appears the Greenfield Bruins and the Gonzales Spartans are headed for a major showdown at the end of the high school football season for the Santa Lucia Division.

Many fans wish the showdown could happen already since these are some of the top teams in the division. But, before the Bruins or Spartans can claim the league title, they have to play out their regular schedule — including getting by the Stevenson Pirates.

Since returning from the pandemic year, both teams have been able to beat Stevenson, who has won the Santa Lucia Division the past couple of years. The Bruins will have the first crack at the Pirates when they play them on Oct. 20, and the Spartans will face them on Oct. 28.

Last week both teams were the favorites to win by a big margin, as Greenfield faced San Lorenzo Valley and Gonzales competed against Pajaro Valley.

Greenfield Bruins

After losing to Pacific Grove last month, the Bruins have rattled off two straight wins — against Harbor and San Lorenzo Valley — and have quickly become the favorites to clinch the Santa Lucia Division title based on the opponents they beat this year.

In the San Lorenzo Valley game on Oct. 6, the Bruins were able to dominate for the second straight week, holding the Cougars to only seven points to win 41-7. For the second consecutive game, the Bruins’ defense was able to shut down their opponent.

What’s more impressive is the evaluation of the offense to put up back-to-back 40-point games.

Next, Greenfield (5-1) will head to Seaside High School on Saturday to face Marina (1-6).

Gonzales Spartans

After starting the season 0-3, the Spartans have rattled off four straight wins — three of which their offense dominated.

Last Friday Pajaro Valley put a scare into Gonzales in the first quarter as the game was tied at 7-7. The Spartans went on to dominate the rest of the game, going on a 45-8 scoring run to win by a final score of 52-15.

Gonzales (4-3) will now travel to San Lorenzo Valley (2-5) on Saturday.

While Greenfield and Gonzales are chasing a league title, the other half of the South Monterey County teams — King City and Soledad — suffered losses last week.

King City Mustangs

Coming into the week, the Mustangs were riding high after their 42-7 breakout win against Rancho San Juan. But they had a tough matchup against the North Salinas Vikings.

Entering Friday night, King City had to feel good going into a game against the Vikings as they had won three of their last four games. North Salinas came into the game as one of the top teams in the Mission Division.

Against Rancho, Mustang quarterback Junior Manriquez had a career day. In this game, he would score, but North Salinas ultimately proved too much for King City, beating them 46-6.

King City (3-3) will now head to Salinas on Friday to take on the Alisal Trojans (5-1).

Soledad Aztecs

The Aztecs have not been doing well, but last week they had an opportunity to knock off an undefeated team, the Pacific Grove Breakers, who were 5-0.

This season has been one to forget for Soledad, but on the bright side, they can be a team to cause a bunch of chaos down the stretch.

Pacific Grove is set to face all four South Monterey County teams this year. So far, they have beaten Greenfield and Gonzales, and will play King City on Oct. 27.

The Aztecs were going to try to break the streak against the South County teams, and at the same time break Pacific Grove’s perfect record. Unfortunately, Friday was not the night for the Aztecs, and the Breakers won 28-8.

Next, Soledad (1-6) will have a home game Friday as they host Rancho San Juan (2-5).

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Jason Gallardo is the sports reporter for King City Rustler and Salinas Valley Tribune, a unified publication of Greenfield News, Soledad Bee and Gonzales Tribune. He covers high school sports for South Monterey County.


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