Loaded with playmakers such as running back Danny Ward and wide receivers Diante Jackson and Corey Paclebar, the Knights offense has had no problem making headlines in the team's 12 straight victories this season.
But while the offense is posting an average of 42 points a game, the Knights defense might be just as big a reason why Las Lomas will be hosting Campolindo in the North Coast Section 2A East Bay championship tonight at 7.
"They've played well all year long," Knights coach Doug Longero said. "They've done a great job of playing team defense. It hasn't just been one guy."
Las Lomas (12-0) has allowed opponents an average of only 14.8 points, and has faced only two second-half deficits all season. The Knights have not trailed in the fourth quarter.
"We just want to be really good at what we do," said Greg Biekert, an 11-year NFL linebacker who's in his third year as Longero's defensive coordinator. "We're not going to do a whole bunch of different things and be real complex. It also helps to have a group of guys who want to learn and get it right."
Just like the offense, the defense has its honor roll, including defensive end Kevin Reed, linebacker Andrew Mulherron and lineman Jason Welch -- all of whom earned first-team All-Diablo Foothill Athletic League honors.
"The key has been our chemistry," Reed said. "We're all friends and a lot of us are back from last year. It's a lot easier to play defense when you trust the person lining up next to you."
Tonight, the Knights defense faces an upstart Campolindo team that gave it fits during the league meeting Nov. 2, a 20-13 Las Lomas victory. The Cougars surprised the Knights by emptying their backfield and spreading out five receivers. It led to 271 passing yards for Campolindo, and a much closer game than Las Lomas would have preferred.
"We're not going to be surprised this time," Welch said. "We're trying to make sure there is no situation in which we won't be prepared."
But if that's not the case, the defense will rely on what has worked best so far.
"It's just come down to hard work and 11 guys swarming to the ball every time," Mulherron said.
Contact Chace Bryson at firstname.lastname@example.org.