EC Preps




By Adam Paul

Staff Writer,©

It is the last week before the end of the regular season and this week features key match ups in both leagues as titles are on the line. Also a few teams are playing for playoff seeding.


NO. 2 HELIX (7-1, 3-1) @ NO. 19 GROSSMONT (6-2, 3-0) 7 PM


First Meeting: 1951 – Grossmont 13, Helix 6

ALL-TIME SERIES: Helix leads the series 41-18-2. Both Grossmont and Helix tied in 1986 7-7 and in 1989 21-21. The two teams didn’t play each other in 2002 and ’03 or ’05, ’07 and ’09.

“The Musket Trophy” Given to the winner of the Annual Helix vs Grossmont Football Game

In what will be according to the 62nd version of the rivalry game between the two La Mesa schools aka “The Battle For The Musket” game sees the Highlanders travel the short distance to Grossmont.

The Foothillers who haven’t beaten the Highlanders since 1991 by a score of 28-14 will look to snap the long losing streak. Interestingly enough current Hillers head coach Tom Karlo was the quarterback for that 1991 squad the last one to defeat the Highlanders.

Last season the Highlanders defeated the Foothillers 45-21.

Last week in their decisive 59-0 Homecoming victory over West Hills, newcomer Isaac Taylor-Stuart got things going when he raced through the defense for a 60-yard score. Isaiah Wooden had 2 scores including another punt return for one. Michael Shawcroft had 2 scores as well.

It was a short night for the starters of Helix as they raced out to a 38-0 lead after the first quarter and a 45-0 lead at the break.

Grossmont in their game against Steele Canyon did damage early as they led 14-7 after the first quarter and 34-14 at the break on their way to a 51-14 victory.

Shevell Sterling Jr. on the ground scored 4 touchdowns and had 121 yards on the night. The passing game was just ok as Jamie Odom finished 12 of 32 for 208 yards.

The defense for Grossmont stepped up in the second half as they pitched a complete shutout. Zach Jones who had 8 tackles and 2 sacks also scored 2 touchdowns including one for 77 yards off an interception, he had 2 INTs on the night.

Both teams come into the contest on winning streaks as the Foothillers have won 4 in a row while Helix has won 6 in a row.

For the Foothillers to have a chance to win they will have to play the game they want to in making sure that Helix isn’t able to use their team speed to disrupt their offense. Also they will have to try and stop the Highlander offense by getting pressure on Helix QB Carson Baker and tackling right away and not let Helix get the important YAC or yards after catch.

Helix on the other hand will look to use their team speed to their advantage and if they are able to it will be a long night for the Foothillers.

Last year’s 21 points by the Foothillers was their second most in the last 5 years when they scored 36 points in 2013.

With everything in mind… HELIX 52-21


VALHALLA (2-6, 0-3) @ STEELE CANYON (4-4, 1-2) 7 PM


First Meeting: 2002 – Valhalla 38, Steele Canyon 13

ALL-TIME SERIES: Valhalla leads 8-6-1. Both teams played to a 30-30 tie in 2005.

In a game that is truly both a mental and physically brutal rivalry in which both teams play real hard and smash mouth against each other the Norsemen travel to Spring Valley this year for the ’17 version of the JAMACHA HELMET TROPHY.

Vallhalla head coach Bussey holding “The Jamacha Helmet Trophy” given to the winner of the annual Valhalla/Steele Canyon football game.

The Norsemen have claimed the last three games in this rivalry series including a 21-14 victory last season.

Last week the Norsemen were defeated pretty soundly by the El Capitan Vaqueros in their homecoming by a score of 51-14. One of the highlights for Valhalla was the great touchdown grab by Josh McNish-Heider in the end zone from Bryan Madriz.

The Cougars on the other hand also had their hands full as they were defeated soundly as well by Grossmont 51-14. Cougars quarterback Thomas Fishburne had a touchdown pass in the game.

This should be an interesting contest as this is usually one of those throw out the records type of rivalries. Valhalla if they are to have a chance will have to start out faster than they have and play like they did against West Hills.

Steele Canyon on the other hand will have to rely on their team speed to give them the boost they desire. If Fishburne, Gorden, Oliver and CO can do their usual thing than the game might get out of hand.

Their usual thing being play a physical style of defense and use their speed and on offense work their magic with the ground game and also the air attack.

Both teams need the game for playoff seeding as well, especially the Cougars who currently sit at sixth.

In the end it will be… STEELE CANYON 35-14


WEST HILLS (5-3, 1-2) @ EL CAPITAN (3-5, 1-2) 7PM


First Meeting: 1989 – West Hills 18, El Capitan 16

ALL-TIME SERIES: West Hills leads 15-12 and the two teams didn’t play in ’07 due to the wild fires.

Last season when these two teams met it was an El Capitan victory 24-17.

This year when West Hills travels to Lakeside they will look to spoil the party as it is homecoming for the Vaqueros. Both teams consider this game a big rivalry game.

Last week the Wolf Pack unfortunately had the privilege of taking on Helix who scored 38 points in the first quarter and shut out the Wolf Pack 59-0.

El Capitan on the other hand did quite the opposite and spoiled the homecoming of Valhalla as they raced to a 51-14 victory. In the contest returning quarterback Wick Hauser threw multiple touchdowns.

This week there are some questions as to the availability of Hauser as he didn’t play much in the second half of last week’s contest. If he is able to go that will be a huge boost for the Vaquero offense as that will allow Antonio Olivieri to go out as a wide receiver and use his big body to his advantage.

The Wolf Pack who started out strong at 5-1 have unfortunately lost their last couple of ballgames and the offense has somewhat sputtered. The defense last week was just outmanned by the speed of the Highlanders and had no opportunities to do anything.

For the Vaqueros, Yaphet Yokley and Connor Roosa on the ground will have to get into the game early and use their speed to give the Pack fits.

West Hills on the other hand will have to have Jordin Young the dual threat work his magic to jump start the Pack offense.

Defensively both teams are solid and should be an interesting matchup on both sides.

Will there be a celebration or a spoiler??? EL CAPITAN 35-28



EL CAJON VALLEY (2-7, 0-2) @ SANTANA (3-5, 0-2), 7PM


First Meeting: 1965 – El Cajon Valley 32, Santana 6

ALL-TIME SERIES: Santana leads 34-16 with both teams not playing in 1986 and ’87. The Sultans have won 7 straight dating back to 2010.

On paper and on the field this game really isn’t a contest as the Braves have not played real well since early on in the season. They haven’t won since the third week of the season for their lone victory on the season which was in honor of their previous Head ball coach Parris Pisiona who was let go just before that game. Last week they ran into a buzz saw in the Monte Vista Monarchs who shut them out 50-0.

Santana on the other hand had the bye week last week which could be good or bad depending on how you look at it. The Sultans who desperately need to keep winning to have a shot at the Division III playoffs as they sit right now in the eleventh spot will look to put this game away early on.

It is homecoming for the Sultans so that should be a boost as there will be a big crowd of both current student and also Alumni.

Oedewaldt and company will look to use this as a game to sort of get back on track offensively and then call it a night. Defensively the Sultans should be able to handle the Braves pretty good.

Overall I really don’t see this being close and there will be a running clock.



MONTE VISTA (5-3, 3-0) @ GRANITE HILLS (6-2, 2-0) 7 PM


First Meeting: 1961 game played at Mount Miguel – Granite Hills 13, Monte Vista 6

ALL-TIME SERIES: Granite Hills leads 31-19 with games not being played in 1994, ’07, ’10-13.

In what looks like to be one of the top games on the slate in the East County the Monte Vista Monarchs travel a little inland to El Cajon to take on the Eagles in a championship tilt.

The game being dubbed by some as the “Clash of the Titans” as both teams play a physical and smash mouth brand of football. Also it will decide the league crown on the Valley side.

Monte Vista last week just steamrolled the El Cajon Valley Braves 50-0 behind the usual suspect of Jahmon McClendon. However they added a new wrinkle to the ground game in Elshaddai Levi. The two headed monster run game tallied about a half a dozen touchdowns last week.

The defense was superb as they completely shut down the offense of the Braves. The Monarchs defense was able to tally multiple sacks.

On the other side the Eagles like the Monarchs they have their own big bruisers. Granite Hills and their rushing attack features multiple backs including their quarterback Jacob Siegfried. Other rushers include sophomore Keyvon Martin who since becoming eligible to play after sitting out has added another dimension. The other back in the group is David Tyler Gonzalez who really pounds the defenses when he rumbles his way through the line and past.

Granite Hills when not running the ball has a pretty good air attack as well in Siegfried and company. His trusty catchers are Chris Ostreng and the big guy William Burton. Siegfried will look to take advantage of any opportunities given via run game to air it out.

Both defenses play physical. For the Monarchs, Levi who was on offense last week also plays on the defensive side with McClendon, Mack and the Schmidt brothers along with Jack Walker among others such as Carlos Robershaw who returned an interception for a touchdown against El Cajon Valley.

Granite Hills on their defense has Garrett Curran, William Burton, Ethan Bishop, David Gonzalez, Aaron Machado, Kieran Blankenship among others.

Both teams are playing not just for a league crown but also for playoff positioning as Monte Vista is at or near the top in Division IV while the Eagles are right near the middle and a home game.

GAME NOTES: Granite Hills has are the two time defending Grossmont Valley league Champions and have a 12-game league winning streak.

Monte Vista head coach Ron Hamamoto is tied with former Torrey Pines head coach Ed Burke with 215 victories which is tied for 6th All-Time in San Diego County. With a win he will tie Gil Warren who coached Castle Park among others and was Olympians first coach who finished with 216 wins which is good for 5th All-Time in San Diego County history.

With a victory the Monarchs can clinch at least a share of the Valley league Crown which would their first league title since 2004 and also 10th overall.

With everything said in a nail biter …. GRANITE HILLS 31-28


CHRISTIAN (6-2, 2-1) @ SCRIPPS RANCH (1-7, 0-2) 7PM


First Meeting: 2015 – Scripps Ranch 52, Christian 35

ALL-TIME SERIES: Series even at 1-1 with Christian winning 62-7 last season.

A week after losing to Lincoln the Patriots look to get back on track against the Falcons and also keep their position high in the Division II playoffs which they are currently in the 8 spot.

Brad Jeremiah and company should be able to do their thing on offense and put the game away pretty easily. The Falcons have given up 357 points on the season for an average of about 40 points a contest. The offense for the Pats is averaging about 40 points a contest.

Jeremiah on the season has thrown for a tad over 2500 yards and 32 touchdowns. His receiving core had multiple receivers who have caught over 30 balls led by Alexander Gonzalez who has hauled in 49 balls for 542 yards and 12 scores.

The defense for the Patriots should be able to stop the Falcons as they only average about 18 points a game and have scored 161 total points. Defensively the Patriots are only giving up a tad above 16 points a game.

This game should be the get back on track game for the Patriots and hopefully get out of it without any type of injury etc as they continue their journey into the playoffs.

On paper this doesn’t look to be a close game and also as one of my fellow media colleagues like to say the computers has Christian winning by a wide margin.

So will the result match what is on paper and also what the computers say??? CHRISTIAN 52-21




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