5 Eagle Football Players Earn 1st Team All Conference, 6 More Second Team
The MSJC football team saw eleven players in total honored by the American Mountain Conference when the 2016 all league team was announced.
The First Team featured the Eagles; Elijah Brown, Devin Pearson, William LuLu, D.J. Reed-Samuels, and Josh Gonzales. Brown, a sophomore wide out from Hemet West Valley HS, finished the season with 37 receptions for 569 yards and 3 touchdowns. Pearson, a defensive tackle from Westchester, Ohio, also earned First Team honors after recording 55 tackles on the season which included 2 sacks and 4 tackles for loss. LuLu, a native of Miami, FL was the Eagles second leading tackler during the 2016 season with 65 on the year. LuLu who played the majority of his time at inside linebacker also had 1.5 sacks, 8 tackles for loss, a forced fumble, a fumble recovery, and an interception during the season for MSJC. Reed-Samuel, a safety for the Eagles had a pair of interceptions this past season and broke up 10 passes. The Rancho Verde grad also made 58 tackles. Gonzales, the MSJC punter this season, rounds out the Eagles First Team selections. Gonzales, who played his high school football at Valley View had 69 punts during the season averaging 34.5 yards and also put the opponent inside the 20 yard line a conference high 11 times.
The Eagles Second Team all league selections include offensive center, Xavier Perez and offensive tackle Ryan Shorter. Perez is from Norte Vista High School while Shorter came to MSJC from Banning High. Joining those two on the offensive side of the ball on the 2nd team were wide out Mike Reed and running back Jomari Becnel. Reed was the Eagles' top pass catcher in 2016 as he hauled in 52 catches for 602 yards and 7 TDs. Reed, a Newark, NJ native, also led the team in all-purpose yards with 1,017. Becnel a freshman from Hampton, Virginia led the state in rushing through the first three weeks of the season before an ankle injury slowed him down the stretch. Becnel finished the year with 749 rushing yards on 127 carries, he scored 7 touchdowns. Rounding out the 2nd team selections for MSJC are outside linebacker Darwin Anderson and cornerback Dimitri Gallow. Anderson, another Hemet West Valley grad, had 33 tackles and 2.5 sacks this year. Gallow, another Valley View alum, led the Eagles with 3 interceptions.
MSJC started the season fast as they raced out to a 3-0 record, but struggled down the stretch to finish the year at 3-7.
Elijah Brown, top right, and Devin Pearson bottom left, were two of 11 MSJC football players who earned either First or Second Team All American Mountain Conference honors for their play during the 2016 season. (DeeAnn Bradley/MSJC).