Football Team Ready to Open 2015 Season on Saturday

The Eagles enter the 2015 football season with high expectations and plenty of talent to compete for the American Mountain League Championship.  Head Coach Casey Mazzotta has a nice mix of veteran players to go with a new crop of talented freshmen.WRJamailLedet15preview.jpg
On the offensive side of the ball MSJC will have to replace running back Eddy Williams, who led the state in rushing last season with 1098 yards and quarterback Zach Chesser who passed for nearly 1,700 yards, but Mazzotta feels like they have the guys to do it.  Jake Newton a freshman from Paloma Valley will take over the reins at quarterback.  Newton threw for 787 yards as a senior last year and 7 touchdowns.  Freshmen Don’yae Hopkins and Carl Williams along with returner David Mayaka will shoulder most of the load early in the season out of the backfield.  Vanel Dossous returns at wide out for the Eagles after coming on strong in conference play last year for MSJC.  Dossous had 32 catches on the season with all but 1 coming in conference competition.   Marlon Archer also returns to be a pass catching threat and West Valley grad Elijah Brown gives MSJC depth at receiver.  Coach Mazzotta calls the offensive line, “A young talented hard working group”.  “I think we will be able to run the ball, and then control the ball with our passing game.”
The Eagles defensive unit also has big shoes to fill with the graduation of the American Mountain Conference defensive player of the year Johnny Williams, but MSJC has a strong and experienced group up front.  Returning starters Phillip Napoleon, George Obialo, and Wesley Scott give the defensive line three very high level players to anchor the defense.  Obialo was third on the team in tackles a year ago with 53 and Scott and Napoleon were tied for second with 5.5 sacks a piece.  “Our strength up front will make it easier for our linebackers and secondary to do their jobs”, added Mazzotta.  At linebacker Chris Whitfield and John Hauso headline the returners while the coaching staff is looking forward to seeing many of the freshmen in action including another West Valley alum Darwin Anderson.  C.J. Parker and Jovan Gooden are the most experienced defensive backs returning for the Eagles and they will be joined by Humbolt State transfer London Miller and a host of freshmen led by safety Lee Johnson.
Joshua Gonzalez a freshman from Valley View High School will handle the kicking and punting duties for the Eagles.  Overall Mazzotta feels good about the year, “I’m very optimistic, we are young but we are talented and coachable.”  “I think throughout the year we will continue to learn and get better, our sights are set on a conference title.”
The MSJC football team will kick off the 2015 season on Saturday when they host Antelope Valley College at Carl Quandt Stadium on the San Jacinto Campus.  Game time is 1 pm.