Valencia dominates All-Foothill League superlatives

Vikings receiver, Mykael Wright (2), gets vertical to catch a pass before running it in for a touchdown against Great Oak High School in a playoff game in Valencia, Calif. on Friday, Nov. 10, 2017. Christian Monterrosa/ The Signal
With the way Valencia handled the Foothill League for a ninth straight season, it shouldn’t come as a shock that the Vikings scooped up a hefty portion of the All-Foothill League honors. Junior Mykael Wright was voted the league’s Player of the Year, starring at cornerback and wide receiver for the Vikings. “It was a big honor for me,” said Wright, who cited the team’s win over Hart to seal a ninth straight league title as his favorite moment of the year. “It’s really cool to see all my teammates that made it, too. It just shows all the work we put in.” Wright, who holds offers to several Pac-12 programs, along with Nebraska, ended the year with 1,317 yards receiving to go with 18 touchdown catches. He also led the Vikings with four interceptions – all coming in league play. “He’s one of the best football players I’ve been around in my 25 years of coaching,” said Vikings coach Larry Muir. “The impact he has on both sides of the ball is pretty incredible.” Wright’s four rushing touchdowns all came in league play as well, including a 146-yard, two-touchdown performance against Saugus on just three carries. MORE: Valencia and Golden Valley reflect on chances at CIF titles Valencia senior quarterback Connor Downs won Offensive Player of the Year, senior defensive lineman Josh DeNeal won Defensive Player of the Year and senior offensive lineman Justin Aguirre won co-Lineman of the Year. “A very deserving group,” Muir said. “They were as successful and as fun of a group as I’ve ever had.” Downs had 13 passing touchdowns through Foothill League play – most of any quarterback – and threw just two interceptions in that span – both coming against Saugus. DeNeal led the Vikings with 9.5 sacks and was second with 19 tackles for a loss, per MaxPreps, tallying six in their win over Golden Valley. Aguirre helped pave the way for a rushing attack that collected over 3,600 yards in 14 games, including 66 touchdowns. Golden Valley’s CJ Ravenell, who was the Grizzlies’ left tackle and top defensive end, also won co-Lineman of the Year. “It was good to see my name up there because Valencia was all up over the awards,” Ravenell said. “It was definitely nice to get my school some recognition.” Ravenell led Golden Valley with 13 sacks, 22 tackles for a loss and three fumble recoveries. He’s still awaiting his first collegiate offer but is garnering interest from San Jose State, UNLV, Wyoming and Sacramento State. “He’s a kid destined to play on Saturdays,” said Golden Valley coach Dan Kelley of the 6-foot-5, 230-pound senior. “With his size, ability and attitude, I absolutely believe he’ll get there.” Valencia led all teams with eight first-team performers. Jayvaun Wilson, Parker Kernek, Zachary Semko and Cole Edwards made it on offense and Ben Seymour, Reilly Royce, Josh Washington and Anthony Hernandez on defense.
Golden Valley senior lineman CJ Ravenell makes a tackle against Fullerton on Sept. 22, 2017. Katharine Lotze/The Signal
Hart was second with seven first-teamers. Its wide receiver tandem of DJ Palmer and Da’Von Jones, along with offensive lineman Nathan Bradder, made the offensive team. C.J. McMullen, who set the school’s single-game and single-season sack records this year, made the defensive team, as well as Julian Salazar, Trevor Laibl and punter Aaron Rodriguez. Saugus running back Quinn Sheaffer’s 1,000-plus yard season on the ground helped earn him first-team honors. Offensive lineman Nathan Tripp and kicker Tanner Brown, who made 16 of 18 field goals with a long of 47 yards, also landed on the first team. Centurion linebackers Tyler Hampsten and Jimmy Stirwalt, who combined for 156 tackles on the year, made the defensive first team. DeMaurea Pride-Ruiz joined them on the first team defense as well. Golden Valley had two players make each first team, with running back DJ Turner and Jalin Lewis on offense, and DeGabriel Floyd and Ahvie Harris on defense. Canyon’s Shawn Gallagher was named the league’s first-team quarterback. West Ranch’s Ryan Camacho was selected as a first-team cornerback. First Team Offense Shawn Gallagher QB Jr. Canyon DJ Turner RB Sr. Golden Valley Jalin Lewis WR Sr. Golden Valley DJ Palmer WR Sr. Hart Da’Von Jones WR Sr. Hart Nathan Bradder OL Sr. Hart Quinn Sheaffer RB Sr. Saugus Nathan Tripp OL Jr. Saugus Jayvaun Wilson RB Jr. Valencia Parker Kernek OL Sr. Valencia Zachary Semko WR Sr. Valencia Cole Edwards OL Sr. Valencia Tanner Brown K Sr. Saugus
Canyon’s quarterback, Shawn Gallagher (7), stiff-arms Hart’s Trevor Laibl (21), during the 50th game between the two at Canyon High School on Friday, Oct. 13, 2017. Nikolas Samuels/The Signal
  First Team Defense Ahvie Harris SS Sr. Golden Valley DeGabriel Floyd FS Jr. Golden Valley Julian Salazar LB Sr. Hart Trevor Laibl LB Sr. Hart CJ McMullen DL Sr. Hart Jimmy Stirwalt LB Sr. Saugus Demaurea Pride-Ruiz CB Sr. Saugus Tyler Hampsten LB Sr. Saugus Ben Seymour DL Jr. Valencia Reilly Royce LB Sr. Valencia Josh Washington DL Sr. Valencia Anthony Hernandez LB Sr. Valencia Ryan Camacho CB Jr. West Ranch Aaron Rodriguez P Jr. Hart
Saugus’ Tyler Hampsten (25) brings down St. Francis running back, Elijah Washington (25) for a loss at COC on Friday. Dan Watson/for The Signal
  Second Team Offense Jacob Lopez OL Jr. Canyon Aaron Castaneda OL Sr. Golden Valley Johnathan Kaelin WR So. Golden Valley JT Shrout QB Sr. Hart Ben Rosen RB Sr. Hart Marc Caporal OL Sr. Hart Richard Meza OL Sr. Saugus Devin Thompson RB Jr. Saugus Moises Haynes RB Sr. Valencia Cody Paul OL Sr. Valencia Jovan Camacho WR Jr. West Ranch Dylan Joscak OL Sr. West Ranch
Hart quarterback JT Shrout (16) jukes Ventura player Kaine Miranda (11) during a football game at Canyon High School on Thursday, Sept. 28, 2017. Nikolas Samuels/The Signal
Second Team Defense Richard Bueno DL Sr. Canyon Henry Vera DB Jr. Canyon Derrese Morganfield LB Jr. Golden Valley Corey Neal LB So. Golden Valley Josh Clark DB Sr. Hart Thomas Bambrick DL Sr. Hart Jordan Durden DL Sr. Saugus Gabriel Velasco LB Sr. Saugus Luring Paialii LB Jr. Valencia Zion Dunson DB Sr. Valencia Jake Killingsworth LB Sr. West Ranch Matthew Heinrich P Sr. Valencia
Valencia’s Zion Dunson (16) takes Notre Dame quarterback Erik Zimmerman (11) during their CIF-Southern Section first-round playoff game at Valencia on Nov. 11. Katharine Lotze/Signal
Honorable Mention Luke Stuart Fr. Canyon Alex D’Ambrosio Sr. Golden Valley Michael Colangelo Jr. Hart Matthew Ballentine Jr. Saugus Kyle Quintal Sr. Valencia Giovanni Nicolazzo Sr. West Ranch  

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