In Week 2 of Foothill League play, we have a classic matchup of one team, Golden Valley, trying to avoid an 0-2 hole and the other, Saugus, trying to separate themselves from the rest of the pack in a game at College of the Canyons today.
The Centurions (5-1 overall, 1-0 in Foothill League) are coming off a dog-fight against Hart that resulted in a 13-7 Saugus win. For the first time this season, Cents’ quarterback Cole Gallagher failed to finish the night with a touchdown. A trend the Grizzlies intend to follow.
“It’s a challenge for us,” said Golden Valley coach Dan Kelley. “He will challenge us in the secondary and he’s also a great runner so we are going to have to contain him. Our pass rush has to get there first because he’s a great player.”
Gallagher has thrown for 850 yards, 11 touchdowns and three interceptions in six games in 2018.
He will have some help from Saugus’ running back Reid Huseman as he tries to get back on track after the two lack-luster outings rushing 37 times for 117 yards against St. Francis and Hart last week. Julian Bornn picked up the slack was the benefactor of the lone touchdown in the win against Hart.
”We are attempting to get the ball to as many different players as possible,” said Cents’ coach Jason Bornn. “What we do is get the ball to the guys that we think can make plays for us. Their touches are limited because we feel that we have a lot of guys that can be productive so we have to ask them to do the most.”
Golden Valley (1-5, 0-1) is coming off a league-opening 53-16 road loss to West Ranch that saw wideout Johnathan Kaelin exit in the second half against the Wildcats with an apparent lower-leg.
“We are all good,” Kelley said. “He went down with an injury that prevented him to go back into the game, but with rehabilitation over the weekend and throughout the school week he has healed and will be ready to go.”
The Grizzlies will have their hands full with a tough Centurions front line that is averaging 166.7 yards on the ground per game. Defensive lineman, Derrese Morganfield II will have something to say about that as he leads all Grizzlies with 56 total tackles and is tied for the lead with three tackles-for-loss.
“Execute our game plan,” Bornn said. “We have talked week in and week out about the competition being against ourselves. The game dictates that we have to play somebody, but it’s about being the best version of yourself. When you start comparing yourself to team you make it more complicated than it needs to be.”
Splitting time in the back field, Christopher Alcantar and Tyler Walker will share the snaps after combining for 132 yards and a touchdown on 19 carries last week against the Wildcats.
“Our big goal tomorrow is to play with 100 percent effort, play as a team and grow as football players,” Kelley said. “We didn’t play very well last week and we are out to prove something tomorrow night with our ability and the way we approach the game. Tomorrow night means more than a win or a loss, it’s more about how we approach the game and if we can stay mentally focused.”
Kickoff is slated for 7:30 p.m. at College of the Canyons.