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2012 Pacific League football preview

08/25/2012, 12:25pm PDT
By Rick Davis, Special to the U-T

Speedster on offense leads Tri-City Christian


Offense: Tri-City Christian wide receiver-running back Nathan Medrano, who runs a 9.9-second 100 meters, was the league’s offensive MVP with 27 touchdowns.

Defense: Army-Navy linebacker Joey Naotola excelled on both sides of the ball in 2011 and was league defensive MVP.

Game: Tri-City Christian at Maranatha Christian, Oct. 19, 7 p.m.

•?Teams in predicted order of finish.


Last year: 9-3

Coach: Rick Brown, 6th year

Key players: Nathan Medrano (RB-WR-DB), Zach Hensley (QB-LB), Ben Giese (RB-LB), Mark Neal (OL-DL), Tim Wolf (RB-DB), Joshua Darisay (WR-DB), Caymen Perrault (OL-DL), John Stoehr (OL-LB), Liam Brenzel (OL-LB), Zack Akin (C-DL), Caeb Morrow (OL-DL).

Scouting report: The Eagles won eight straight en route to a 9-3 finish that ended in a 62-13 loss to Santa Fe Christian in the Division V semifinals. Leading rusher Medrano (678 yards, nine TDs) also led the receivers (34 catches, 810 yards, 14 TDs). Brown lost his top five solo tacklers to graduation. Hensley, team leader with eight sacks, inherits the QB job.


Last year: 8-1

Coach: Michael Hauser, 2nd year

Key players: Jake Kirby (QB-FS), Josiah Rubia (LB), Dan Duka (RB), Jacob Secrist (CB), Michael Trent (WR-SS), Max Schwan (WR-CB), Brady Kilpatrick (LB), Jack Olmstead (WR-CB), Jeremy Tejada (TE), Joel Batule (G-T).

Scouting report: After orchestrating an 8-1 record in eight-man football in his debut at the Eagles helm, Hauser notes 10 returning starters, familiarity with his overall system and team speed as strengths. Rubia and Kirby were All-Sunset Leaguers with Kirby throwing for 979 yards and 17 TDs and rushing for an additional 949 with 15 TDs. The interior line, on both sides of the ball, is being rebuilt with the 240-pound Batule a key.


Last year: 0-10

Coach: Rone Torres, 1st year

Key players: Jay Dutra (WR), Estaban Lieras (DB), Richard Cuthill (DT), Michael Martinez (TE), Estafan Gamboa (OL-DL), Oscar Castro (MLB-OG), Michael Sills (C-DE), Chris Texeira (WR-FS), Ricky Perez (DL-OG), Blaise Slattery (PK).

Scouting report: Outscored 367-104 and winless last fall, the Warriors figure to bounce back with ex-Eastlake assistant Rone Torres in charge. “About 80 percent of our roster now were freshmen last season when a majority of them were playing organized football for the first time,” said Torres. “But we only lost two seniors who were regular players. We’re extremely athletic with team speed and toughness.” Dutra, a basketball standout, looms as a big-play threat at WR.


Last year: 4-7

Coach: Frank Henry, 2nd year

Key players: Joey Naotola (RB-LB), Sam Harlib (WR-RS), Mike Luque (RB-DB), Erik Immiti (LB), Korey Warren (TE), Timothy Mack (WR-RB-DB), Ahn Nguyen (OL-DL), Henry Hanahran (OL-DL), Kava Aviu (WR-S), Patrick Marshall (LB).

Scouting report: The Warriors return their top two rushers from 2011 — Luque (1,295 yards, 7.0 per attempt) and Naotola (525, 8.2). “But we need to balance the attack,” said Henry, whose team led the league in rushing (212 yards per game), but was last in passing (42 per game). Frontline experience exists with 17 returnees who played considerably — but Henry frets about depth issues if injuries hit. Turnover reduction is another priority.


Last year: 4-3

Coach: Joseph Gurfinkiel, 1st year

Key players: Jose Mizrahi (LB-OL), Ethan Laser (WR-FS), Jake Posnock (LB-C), Jeremy Danzig (RB-LB), Daniel Magun (DE-OL), Micah Weinstein (QB-SS), Brandon Morse (WR-CB), Adam Sloane (RB-LB), Alex Gaylis (RB-LB), Ong Pansak (OL-DL).

Scouting report: Gurfinkiel debuts as Lions coach with his most imposing task rebuilding the interior line on offense (three starters graduated) and defense (both tackles graduated). Weinstein is coming off an all-league junior season in which he passed for 1,063 yards on 82 completions and rushed for 166 yards and a 4.88 average per carry. Top two receivers Sloane (30 receptions, 346 yards, 3 TDs) and all-leaguer Laser (26, 340, 6) also return, augmented by newcomers Daniel Moch and Adam Sharf.


Last year: 3-7

Coach: Randy Kreglow, 2nd year

Key players: John Jacobi (RB-LB), James Petro (QB), Zach Kajtie (DT-G), Jacob Stout (WR-CB), Jeremiah Stout (WR-CB), Morgan Spoelstra (OL-LB), Thomas Bousma (RB-LB), Christian Drown (C-LB), David Kajtie (TE-LB), Quinn Albright (OT-DE).

Scouting report: With a projected 14-man varsity in the school’s sixth season of offering football, most of the Crusaders will be playing offense, defense and special teams. “Never coming off the field,” noted Kreglow. “Work ethic clearly is the team’s strength.” Petro returns at QB after passing for 819 yards. A big offensive load looms for Jacobi (16 catches, including a co-team-high three for TDs). The defensive load will be shared as it was in 2011 when eight players had at least 21 solo tackles.

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