- Erik McKinney, RecruitingNation
TE Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick (Rocklin, Calif./Whitney) – It was a big day for teammate Jake Rodrigues in Whitney’s 19-7 victory over Antelope, as he rushed for 104 yards and two touchdowns. But Cope-Fitzpatrick’s lone reception went for 35 yards and helped set up the go-ahead touchdown. He also added nine tackles from his defensive end position.
WR Jaydon Mickens (Los Angeles/Dorsey) – Dorsey got an early jump on the weekend, defeating Crenshaw on Thursday night 7-6. It was terrific defense and a missed Crenshaw extra point that did it for the Dons, as they remained undefeated in the Coliseum League.
FB Jahleel Pinner (Mission Viejo, Calif./Mission Viejo) – Pinner continues to save himself for the playoffs as he recovers from a leg injury suffered earlier this season. Without him, Mission Viejo posted a 14-7 win over Rancho Santa Margarita Tesoro, giving the Diablos at least a share of their 10th-consecutive South Coast League title.
WR Darreus Rogers (Carson, Calif./Carson) – The Colts bounced back from consecutive losses with a big win over Los Angeles Washington, 40-12. Since opening the season with two huge games, Rogers has been the focus of every opponent on Carson’s schedule, so the Colts have responded by going to the ground game. Quarterback Kevin McMahon threw the ball just four times on Friday night.
LB Jabari Ruffin (Downey, Calif./Downey) – Finished with eight tackles on defense and caught two touchdown passes to help Downey to a 36-35 victory over Compton Dominguez. The Vikings converted a 2-point conversion with 22 seconds remaining to pull out the win.
OL Jordan Simmons (Encino, Calif./Crespi) – Crespi dropped a back-and-forth affair to Mission Hills Alemany, 30-28. The Celts looked good running the ball early, but were slowed in the second half, when Alemany put up the winning score with seven minutes remaining. The loss drops Crespi to 1-2 in the Serra League, looking up at both Alemany and Los Angeles Loyola.
LB Scott Starr (Norco, Calif./Norco) – After trading wins and losses since week three of the season, Norco dismantled Corona 35-19 to post back-to-back victories. The Norco defense held Corona to six points until the game was well in hand.
OL Max Tuerk (Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif./Santa Margarita) – The Eagles racked up more than 350 rushing yards in a 28-20 victory over Bellflower St. John Bosco and, as usual, Tuerk was in the middle of most of it. He was also responsible for several big defensive plays, including a sack and fumble recovery. Santa Margarita guaranteed itself a playoff spot with the win and a subsequent Anaheim Servite victory later that night.
DE Pio Vatuvei (Patterson, Calif./Patterson) – Patterson fell in a big way against Modesto Central Catholic, 58-22, but Vatuvei was a bright spot offensively, rushing for two short touchdowns. Patterson will now prepare for a playoff game against Auburn Placer as the No. 10 seed in the CIF playoffs.
OT Chad Wheeler (Santa Monica, Calif./Santa Monica) – For the first time in 10 years, Santa Monica laid claim to the Ocean League title with a 17-14 victory over Culver City. Wheeler has missed most of the season with a shoulder injury. He elected to rehab the shoulder, rather than undergo surgery and head coach Travis Clark has said that any return by Wheeler this season would be a welcomed surprise.
RB Kelvin York (Fullerton, Calif./Fullerton College) – York sat out again this weekend, missing Fullerton’s 35-24 loss to Mt. SAC. He has been bothered by a knee injury this season, but missing time has been more precautionary due to his future potential and a desire to send him into spring ball as healthy as possible.
TE Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick (Rocklin, Calif./Whitney) – It was a big day for teammate Jake Rodrigues in Whitney’s 19-7 victory over Antelope, as he rushed for 104 yards and two touchdowns.