CLOSER LOOK: Centennial DE Jaylen Johnson

Take a closer look at Corona Centennial senior Jaylen Johnson and you’ll see an almost two-inch gash on his chin.

That’s right. It was sticky with gauze when I caught up with him after the game, and when I asked him about it he said, “It ain’t nothing. Just a little scratch.”

Johnson, a 6-foot-5, 240-pound beast, made six tackles — two for a loss — and a sack as Centennial defeated Riverside King 70-28 in a Big VIII League game on Friday, Oct. 18, 2013.

How did the defense play tonight?

“I think we played great in certain areas. We need to clean up some things, mainly penalties — those have been killing us — but it’s a great win for the team,” Johnson said.

How has the team come together since the two-game losing streak?

“We just got to come out and play better than we did the week before,” he said. “We had a big, whole-team movement after the Alemany loss, and I think we’re moving in the right direction.”

Any personal goals for you this season?

“There’s a couple of records I want to break, defensively. And I just want to have a good senior season so I can go off to college,” he said.

What can you take from such a lop-sided victory?

“We just got to come out and focus on Roosevelt,” Johnson said. “Forget this victory. It’s on to the next one.”

And he’s right. If this team has the mentality that it’s going to the CIF-State playoffs then they should beat King by a large margin (although 58 points is practically vast) and proceed to their next target.

It’s the mentality of a championship-or-bust team. Johnson has the busted chin to prove it.

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