May 22, 2024

OC Sports Zone: Community First

Players of the week and a look ahead at week 10 of high school football

Woodbridge quarterback Kyle Hurry holds the Dennis Toohey Fence Post Trophy Friday. (Photo: Fernando M. Donado, for OC Sports Zone).

WOODBRIDGE (6-3, 4-0)

Last week: Woodbridge 35, University 0. Woodbridge won its first league title in 20 years and captured the Dennis Toohey Fence Post Trophy for the second year in a row.

Offensive players of the week: Offensive line left tackle Matt Ploof, left guard Jared Ayvazian, center Cole Jensen, right guard Kyle Wray, right tackle Noah Norris and tight ends Roee Lachmish and Colin Turner.

Defensive players of the week: Colin Turner, Max Tipple and Ezra Aquirre.

Special teams player of the week: Andy Smith, long snapper.

This week: Woodbridge plays at Portola Friday night. “We are looking to be consistent and ready ourselves for the playoffs,” said Coach Rick Gibson.

IRVINE (4-5, 3-1)

Last week: Irvine 49, Portola 19.

Coach’s comment: “I was proud of our entire team in all three phases of the game for contributing to the victory,” said Coach Erik Terry. “Peter Abe is doing a great job and when they are seniors next year, watch out for the Bulldogs.”

This week: Irvine hosts Northwood Friday night at 7 at Irvine Stadium. “This week is a must win for both teams in order to secure a playoff spot,” Terry said. “The Timberwolves are well-coached and very athletic. This will be a tough test for us and we will need to play our best football game of the season.

BECKMAN (5-4, 2-2)

Last week:  Beckman 24, Northwood 12.

Offensive player of week: Omar Abdullah amassed over 200 yards of total offense and two touchdowns.

Defensive player of week: Safety Josh Carter logged 10 total tackles, an interception, and a sack on a critical third down.

Special teams player of week: Kicker Jamar Coleman

Coach’s comment on last week: “That was a great win for our seniors in their last home game,” said Coach Marcello Giuliano. “We knew that both teams were much improved from last year and that it was going to be an even hard-fought contest. Northwood pulled within two points at the start of the third quarter, and I was really proud that our guys retrenched and responded on both sides of the ball.  It showed some maturity in how we respond to adversity.”

This week: Beckman plays at University Friday night. “These are two very similar, evenly matched teams,” Giuliano said. “Uni has great team speed, an aggressive defense, and a physical running game.  As with every week in this league, we better play our best, most inspired football if we are going to give ourselves a chance to win and extend our season.

FOOTHILL (3-6, 2-0)

Last week’s score: Foothill 19, Brea Olinda 13.

Offensive player of week Zach Goral, three receptions for 33 yards and one touchdown.

Defensive player of week Dylan Ventress, 17 tackles.

Special teams player of week: Jack Provenzano. “The sophomore stepped in at long snapper without incident when (Nathanael) Wright was injured,” said Coach Doug Case.

Coach’s comment: “It was a huge victory for the Knights,” Case said. “The win gave the Knights at least a share of the league title, Our first since 2013. Great effort for all involved and the defense came up huge with a goal line stand from the one with less the two minutes remaining.”

This week: Foothill hosts El Dorado Thursday night at 7 at Tustin. “This game has big ramifications for both teams,” Case said. “The Knights are playing for the outright title and a favorable placement in the playoffs and the Hawks are playing for a chance to get in and a share of the title. El Dorado will be ready to play, so we must be prepared for the intensity and focus on our assignments. We seem to be peaking at the right time and we need to have the desire to play for the outright League title and positioning in the playoff it comes with. This is a huge fork in the road for the Knights and the direction of our program.”

PORTOLA (2-7, 0-4)

Last week’s score: Irvine 49, Portola 19.

Offensive player of week:  “Our offensive line was recognized as the offensive players of the week due to their consistent play in both the pass and running game this week,” said Coach Peter Abe.  “They were able to create the opportunities we needed to improve in our overall execution and extend drives.

Defensive players of week: Adrian Valerin, junior lineman and Andre Quiroz, sophomore defensive back.

Special teams player of week: Trevor Yue, sophomore and Joe Kim, junior.

Coach’s comment: “The Bulldogs are much improved and healthier than we’ve been all season and it showed.,” said Coach Peter Abe. “It was still a struggle to slow down the offensive firepower for Irvine, but we executed better as a complete team.  Our coaching staff tips our hat to a well coached, disciplined Vaquero team, but we look forward to what the future brings for the Bulldogs as we continue to get better and prove that we can compete in this league.”

This week’s game: Portola hosts Woodbridge Friday night. “After locking up the league and city titles, the Warriors will be a formidable challenge the Bulldogs look forward to accepting,” Abe said. “Coach (Rick) Gibson does a great job, and if we are working to one day be in their position, we have to dive head first into opportunities such as these to not only show what we can do, but witness first hand what a Pacific Coast league champion looks like on the field.”

NORTHWOOD (5-4, 2-2)

Last week’s score: Beckman 24, Northwood 12.

Offensive player of week: Travis Arena

Defensive player of week: Mike Sarno

Special teams player of week: Josiah Smith

This week: Northwood plays Irvine Friday night at 7 p.m. at Irvine Stadium.

Coach’s comment on last week: It’s really hard to win when you turn the ball over five times, especially against a good team like Beckman,” said Coach Pete Mitchell.

TUSTIN (3-6. 2-2)

Last week: Cypress 20, Tustin 7.

Offensive player of the week: Junior running back Matt Rodriguez, who had 14 carries for 82 yards.

Defensive player of the week:  Junior defensive lineman Elijah Siofele.

Special teams player of the week: Long snapper Saul Gomez.

Coach’s comment: (It was) a tough game.,” said Coach Myron Miller. “We made some mistakes early which put us behind at the half.  I’m proud of the way the defense played in the second half not allowing Cypress to score.  In the end, their players made big time plays when they needed to and we did not.”

This week: Tustin plays Crean Lutheran Friday night at home. “With a win and some help, have a shot at the playoffs,” Miller said.

UNIVERSITY (2-7, 1-3)

Last week: Woodbridge 35, University 0

Player of the week: Andre Le

Coach’s comment: Once again the effort of our team was evident,” said Coach Scott Meyer.  “We have stayed together and continued to play hard throughout the game. ” 

-Tim Burt, OC Sports Zone; timburt@ocsportszone.com