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Santa Clarita Skyhawks prepare for March 12 showdown

Posted: March 8, 2011 1:01 p.m.
Updated: March 8, 2011 3:00 p.m.

The Santa Clarita Skyhawks developmental football team kicks off its 2011 season on Saturday, March 12 at 7 p.m. when the Skyhawks host the San Diego Thunder at Canyon High School.

Tickets cost $10. The game will be broadcast live on

Canyon High School is located at 19300 Nadal St., Canyon Country 91351.

The Skyhawks is the only civilian football team in California with a 501(c)(3) nonprofit status. The team plays its games in honor of the Michael Hoefflin Foundation for Children's Cancer, based locally in Santa Clarita.

On Saturday, March 19, the team will promote awareness at the foundation's upcoming Pediatric Cancer Challenge Walk at College of the Canyons.

"Our team has really grown in our second year of existence," said Skyhawk Founder and Head Coach Jamil Antoine, a Hart High School graduate. "The team is bigger, faster and stronger, and thanks to a great coaching staff, better prepared than ever before to help bring awareness and support to the Michael Hoefflin Foundation."

The team features several former Santa Clarita football standouts, including former Hart starters Craig Wright and Ohre Kilpatrick; former Valencia players Jake Fricke and Brent Hutchison; former Canyon Cowboys Sean MacNeil and Kenny Suber; and former Saugus Centurions Frank Lopez and Ely Perez; and former Golden Valley standout Marcellus Holt, whose older brother and former Crespi star DJ Holt starts at middle linebacker at Pac-12 contender Cal-Berkley.

The Skyhawks support staff is spearheaded by Santa Clarita businessman and former Michael Hoefflin Foundation Executive Director Jeffrey Shapiro, who serves as President of the Skyhawks. Shapiro said "This team consists of a remarkable group of young men who put their passion for football into a positive force to help children with cancer."

"Where else can you find quality local football on a crisp March evening, and know that every dime spent is being invested right back into the community, helping families from in and around Santa Clarita who are dealing with the most devastating of circumstances?" said Assistant Head Coach John Klymshyn. "It won't get any better than this Saturday!"

The Skyhawks are coming off an exciting Blue and White scrimmage, where the dominant Skyhawk defense showed their might for the second straight week. On Feb. 26, the Skyhawks lost 6-0 to the Southern California Strikeforce at Baldwin Park High School.


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