Edison's Marcus Stepancich feels the pain of losing to Mater Dei, 20-14, at Orange Coast College on Friday. (SCOTT SMELTZER, HB Independent / September 26, 2012)

The end of a tough three-week stretch comes to an end Friday for the Edison High football team.

Having taken on the likes of Servite and Mater Dei in their previous two outings, splitting those two nonleague games, the Chargers — ranked second in the CIF Southern Section Southwest Division — now venture to San Clemente to take on the Tritons.

"It's a real tough stretch for us," said Edison Coach Dave White. "We schedule these types of games to get us ready for Sunset League play."


Friday games

Edison (3-1) vs. San Clemente (4-1), 7 p.m., San Clemente High: Edison climbed out of a three-touchdown hole at LeBard Stadium and had opportunities to go into the lead in the fourth quarter last week. Mater Dei, however, was able to hang on for a 20-14 nonleague victory.

The Chargers, then the top-ranked team in the CIF Southern Section Southwest Division, trailed the Monarchs, the No. 5 team in the Pac-5 Division, 20-0, early in the second quarter. Turnovers doomed the Chargers at the outset and the Monarchs worked a short field on their first three possessions of the game to reach the end zone.

"You can't make that many mistakes and expect to beat a team of Mater Dei's caliber," White said. "But our kids nearly overcame those mistakes and we had our chances there at the end.

"Those early turnovers really hurt us. We could have folded, but our guys didn't. Our defense played great once again. I'm proud of our kids."

Donald Rice accounted for both Edison touchdowns. The senior running back scored on a 14-yard run late in the first half, and later on a two-yard run on the first play of the fourth quarter. The Chargers defense shut out the Monarchs, who came in averaging 44 points, from the 9:45 mark of the second quarter to the end of the game.

San Clemente also is looking to spring back from its first loss of the season. The Tritons, then ranked eighth in the CIF Southern Section Pac-5 Division, were shocked, 28-7, by Newport Harbor last week. The Tritons, who averaged 39 points in their first four games, scored in the game's final minute to avoid being shut out.

The San Clemente defense had given up just 30 points in four previous games.

"It'll be another big challenge for our team," White said. "I think we have a good football team. Our defense is playing great but we've got to get more consistent on offense."

The Chargers and Tritons are meeting for the eighth time, but haven't faced each other since the 2007 season. Edison has won all seven previous games.

Heritage Christian (3-2) vs. Brethren Christian (3-1), 7 p.m., Ocean View High: Brethren Christian hopes to reload Friday when the Warriors entertain Heritage Christian of North Hills.

The Warriors suffered their first loss last week. They fell behind, 28-0, at St. Anthony, fought back but ended up with a 42-25 setback. Despite losing key receiver Guy Demazeliere to an ankle injury early in the game, BC closed to within 35-25 early in the fourth quarter.

Quarterback Jack McInally threw for 289 yards and three touchdown passes in the second quarter, two to Brandon Bryson and one to Anthony Moore. Bryson also rushed for a touchdown in the fourth quarter that closed the score to 35-25.

"We were able to close to within a score but just couldn't stop their running game," BC Coach Pat McInally said. "Terrible start, heroic comeback effort, but we didn't get it done."

Heritage Christian started the season with three wins but has lost in consecutive weeks.

"We're treating this week like a playoff game, as a measuring stick to see how far we've come as a program," Pat McInally said.