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Prep football: Injury bug bites Vikes

Junior varsity team also looking to establish more consistency

Posted: September 1, 2011 1:55 a.m.
Updated: September 1, 2011 1:55 a.m.

The Valencia junior varsity football team has a lot to live up to after going 9-1 last season and winning the Foothill League.

This year, though, the Vikings will have to battle through injuries and play with more consistency than they have shown during summer practices if they want to finish on top once again.

Leading that charge will be sophomore quarterback Jake Wallace and wide receivers Spencer Hickson, Nick Jones and Jordan Guzman.

Guzman has been named one of two team captains, along with linebacker John Sayre, by head coach Curt White.

“They’ve both really shown great leadership both on and off the field,” White said. “In the weight room and on the field, a lot of leadership qualities.”

With Guzman leading the offense, Sayre will be charged with leading a defense anchored by its linebackers, Alex Tappia, Jourdan Gnuyen and Sayre.

While the core on both sides of the ball is shaping up nicely for the Vikings, a series of personnel losses at other positions could prove problematic for Valencia this season.

Malick Townson, set to start at running back for the team, has been called up to the varsity team, and White has been working out various players to fill the hole.

So far, Julian Herron and Isaic Lara have emerged as a likely running back duo, with Herron being the shiftier runner and Lara a power runner, according to White.

Defensively, the Vikings have been hurt by an injury to starting defensive lineman Rand Wellhouser who was also penciled in to start on the offensive line, White said.

As a result, the Vikings have had to rely on their roster of 44 players to find replacements during summer workouts.

“You’ve just got to do the best job you can at trying to develop some depth,” White said. “You just have to coach. You just have to coach the backups, and just try to develop some depth and you move on. It is what it is, and you deal with it, and you replace him and put someone else in there and just try to make the pieces to the puzzle work.”


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