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Gardena Serra beats Chaminade 32-23, Sierra Canyon wins Mission League title outright

Serra trailed 24-19 late in the third quarter

In a back and forth affair, Gardena Serra beat Chaminade 32-23 in a game that came down to the final minute of the fourth quarter. With just seconds remaining and Serra clinging to a 26-23 lead, Cavaliers' junior Tanu Sosa intercepted Chaminade quarterback Javance Tupouata-Johnson and returned the pick 78 yards for a touchdown to ice the game.

On Serra's previous possession, the Cavaliers remarkably turned a 4th-and-4 from their own 40-yard line into a 60-yard touchdown when sophomore QB Jimmy Butler hit a wide open Camron Harris-Willcot for six. The touchdown came with 2:30 to play and gave Serra the lead for good. 

Additionally, the score also handed Sierra Canyon the Mission League title.

Heading into Friday night's action, Sierra Canyon and Chaminade were both tied atop the Mission League standings with 3-1 records. Sierra Canyon beat Notre Dame 42-21 to move to 4-1 in sole possession of first place. 

Serra led Chaminade 19-14 at halftime, but the Cavs gave up their advantage following three second half interceptions from Butler. 

First, Mitchell Bermant picked off Butler on an overthrown screen pass to set up a 38-yard field goal from Ryon Sayeri with 5:04 to play in the third quarter. The kick cut the Serra lead to 19-17. On Serra's next possession, Ryan Abughazaleh intercepted Butler to get Chaminade into the red zone. A few plays later, a 4-yard TD run from Logan Carpenter gave the Eagles a 24-19 lead with 3:33 left in the third quarter. 

Following the score, Le'roi Lewis intercepted Butler for the third straight possession, but miraculously Chaminade never scored again. 

In the first half, Serra running back Cincere Rhaney and Chaminade running back Jaelon Barbarin each scored two touchdowns. Barbarin's first score came on a 74-yard run. Serra junior receiver Zacharyus Williams added a 53-yard TD reception in the second quarter as well. 


Outside of Sosa's pick-6, Gardena Serra senior Rodrick Pleasant made the other play of the night for the Cavaliers' defense. After Barbarin broke open a long run, Pleasant chased him down, forced and then recovered a fumble. It was a brilliant display of speed, intelligence and athleticism play. Watch it below. 

The Southern Section playoff football brackets will be released on Sunday morning at 10 am. Both Chaminade and Serra will qualify. Coming into the game, CalPreps, the ratings system used to place teams in playoff divisions, ranked Chaminade at No. 9 in the Section and Serra at No. 14.