Haley Sawyer, Signal Sports Editor
Golden Valley 27, Highland 7
Expect another strong outing from the Grizzlies against the Bulldogs. Chevalier will start the season off on a strong note with plenty of receivers to connect with and a defense that’s always ready to get the ball back in his hands.
Saugus 17, Taft 3
I’m interested to see how the new faces on the Saugus offense perform, especially at quarterback and running back. You don’t get a second chance at a first impression, so the Centurions have a lot on the line tonight.
West Ranch 28, Nordhoff 21
With two potentially potent offenses, the Cats and the Rangers both look really good heading into the matchup. Eget will look good, but the new receiving corps will play a major role in how he performs.
SCCS 31, Santa Clara 24
New head coach Mark Bates will lead the Cardinals to victory in this rematch. With a fully healthy roster, SCCS will be itching to get on the field and score some touchdowns.
Diego Marquez, Signal Staff Writer
Golden Valley 21, Highland 10
A relatively young team, the final score will be indicative of the youth and inexperience at certain positions for the Grizzlies, but with returning players Zack Chevalier, Johnathan Kaelin and Derrese Morganfield II the Grizzlies should pull out the win.
Saugus 14, Taft 10
Ending the 2017 season with a loss in the CIF-Southern Section Division 6 semifinals, the Centurions lose a lot of key players, but as always follow with the next-man-up rule as head coach Jason Bornn will have the Cents ready to come out with a victory.
West Ranch 28, Nordhoff 17
Returning explosive players like Jovan and Ryan Camacho, coupled with highly-touted quarterback Weston Eget, the Wildcats will be explosive on offense with questions still looming on defense.
SCCS 28, Santa Clara 24
A rematch of last year’s only for the Cardinals where they went 11-1 overall, the Cardinals will come back with a thirst and hunger never seen before. Returning key players like Ethan Schwesinger from injury and with quarterback Blake Kirshner having one more year of experience under center the game should be a treat to watch.
Dan Lovi, Signal Staff Writer
Saugus 28, Taft 3
I believe Saugus is going to set the tone in their first matchup of the season, dominating a Taft team that struggled last season and graduated its starting quarterback, running back and two wide receivers. A shutout isn’t out of the realm of possibility, but I’ll give Taft a field goal at the very least.
Golden Valley 24, Highland 7
Highland just isn’t very good. They played Golden Valley to open last season, and got shellacked 30-0. They finished the season 3-7 and did not make the playoffs. The Grizzlies on the other hand, finished 8-6 and made it to the championship game in the Division 6 playoffs. Despite Golden Valley’s youth, I don’t expect their opening game will be tough.
West Ranch 17, Nordhoff 14
Of all the Foothill League teams, West Ranch is the most intriguing because they have so much potential. Quarterback Weston Eget has a powerful arm, the Camacho brothers are extremely versatile and running back Jackson Reyes has shown lightning-quick speed in practice. This one is going to be close, but the Wildcats squeak out the victory.
SCCS 35, Santa Clara 27
Senior quarterback Blake Kirshner is going to play much better than he did in his last outing against Santa Clara, where he failed to throw a touchdown pass for the only time all season. The Cardinals’ only loss last year was against Santa Clara and they have payback on their minds. It’s going to be close, but SCCS get its revenge.