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CIF football playoffs: Drew, 42 and a first-round W

Wolitarsky breaks state record; Canyon wins big

Posted: November 10, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: November 10, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Canyon wide receiver Drew Wolitarsky hands over the football after scoring a touchdown Friday at Canyon High. Canyon wide receiver Drew Wolitarsky hands over the football after scoring a touchdown Friday at Canyon High.
Canyon wide receiver Drew Wolitarsky hands over the football after scoring a touchdown Friday at Canyon High.

Drew Wolitarsky really knows how to add style points to major milestones.

In yet another record-setting night for the Canyon senior wide receiver, Wolitarsky torched San Luis Obispo for nine grabs, 128 yards and two touchdowns on his way to setting the new mark for most career receptions in the history of California high school football.

“I come out more fired up just because I know I’m so close (to the record), and once you get it, it’s just a momentum booster I guess you’d say, and it just comes easy,” said Wolitarsky, who broke the record early in the second quarter on a 6-yard screen play.

It was plenty to help the Cowboys beat the Tigers 42-9 and advance past the first round the of CIF-Southern Section Northern Division playoffs on Friday at Canyon High School.

Next week, Canyon will travel to face Atascadero, which pulled off a 26-7 upset of Northern Division No. 1 seed Palmdale on Friday.

Also on Friday, Wolitarsky put his career total to 277 catches, which tops the former record of 271 held by former Taft High and current NFL wideout Steve Smith.

Earlier this season, Wolitarsky, who now has 5,110 career yards, became the state’s all-time receiving yardage record holder. That was also a record held by Smith.

The very next play after setting the record, Wolitarsky caught a 7-yard touchdown – his second of the game – from quarterback Cade Apsay, which put Canyon (8-2-1) in front for good at 14-7.

At that point, the offense was rolling and the injury-riddled Tigers (6-5) were being slowed after starting off with a strong running attack via the triple option.

San Luis Obispo had 115 rushing yards after the first two drives, which included a 17-yard scoring play taken in by Nate Greenelsh to give the Tigers a 7-0 lead at the 3:28 mark in the opening quarter.

After that, Canyon made the proper adjustments and limited San Luis Obispo to 227 total yards on the ground.

“We knew what they were going to come out with, but it’s almost like you have to feel the game a little bit,” said Canyon head coach Rich Gutierrez. “I think the boys came out, found their flow and got comfortable with what they were doing.”

It also helped that the Tigers came into the game missing their starting quarterback Garrett Giovannelli due to an injury and then proceeded to lose starting running back Sawyer Scott and backup quarterback Thomas Orradre during Friday’s game.

“It’s just a matter of running out of our horses,” said San Luis Obispo head coach David Kelley. “We have three or four guys standing in crutches.”

Apsay completed 12-of-19 passes for 253 yards and three touchdowns – two to Wolitarsky and one to Liam Cabrera – all in the first half.

Apsay also took two scores in himself from 1 and 3 yards out.

The Cowboys led 28-9 at halftime shortly after the Tigers scored two points on a safety thanks to a botched snap on a punt play.

In the second half, Canyon fed the rock to running back Dominic Pennucci, who picked up 116 of his 139 rushing yards after the break. He carried the ball 12 times and scored on a 39-yard run to cap off the game’s scoring late in the third quarter.



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