TRUE, THEY are
California powerhouses, but Ryan Keys had modest expectations when he put two
$7 tickets for last Friday's clash between St. Bonaventure ( Ventura) and Oaks
Christian ( Westlake Village) on eBay. Instead, on the Tuesday before the game,
his tickets sold for $73.50. "I couldn't believe it--that much for a high
school game?" said Keys, 22. "That's pretty crazy."
Not when you
consider that Fox Sports Net was televising the matchup nationally and that an
offshore gambling site (thegreek.com) had posted a betting line on the
Why all the
hoopla? Oaks Christian and St. Bonaventure came into the matchup riding winning
streaks of 33 games and 27 games, respectively. Oaks Christian has nine seniors
who will likely play Division I-A football next season, led by the nation's top
player, quarterback Jimmy Clausen. St. Bonaventure was ranked No. 1 in the area
by a local newspaper.
Last Friday fans
started lining up outside Ventura's Larrabee Stadium at about 2 p.m. for a 7
o'clock start. USC fan Al Pacheco, 70, took an Amtrak train 86 miles from San
Pedro to see Oaks Christian's future Trojans, running back Marc Tyler and
safety Marshall Jones. "I had to see if they're as good as they're supposed
to be," Pacheco said.
They were. Oaks
Christian racked up 600 yards of offense in a 59--13 shellacking of St.
Bonaventure that put to rest talk that the Lions had built its sterling
reputation by beating up on small-school opponents. Tyler ran for 271 yards and
five touchdowns; Clausen was 16 of 26 for 227 yards and two scores.
doubt they're the real deal," said former UCLA and UTEP running back Tyler
Ebell, a Ventura High grad who was on the St. Bonaventure sideline.
Ryan Keys thought
he had a real deal as well, but he should've sold his tickets later in the
week. Last Friday morning a pair went on eBay for $132.50.