East County Sports

Monarchs already dealing with injuries

This is the 12th of a 13-part series that will take a look at each football team that East County Sports.com covers.  Each day, we will look at a different school, leading up to the final preview which will be published on the day that most of the teams in East County have their scrimmage leading into the 2015 season.  This edition we look at how the Monte Vista Monarchs will try to battle through some tough early season injuries.

By Chris Davis
© East County Sports.com
SPRING VALLEY (8-20-15) — Injuries are a part of football, coaches hope that they can avoid them, but with a sport as physical as football they just happen.  Just most of the time, the injuries happen during the season and not the offseason.

The Monte Vista Monarchs will be working from behind the proverbial eight ball this season as they had a “perfect storm” of injuries and other issues hitting all within the first week of camp.  First was an injury then a transfer.  When you add on top of that the fact that the Monarchs lost 30 seniors from their Valley League runner-up finish of 2014.

Roster breakdown:
Quarterback: DENNIS DAHLIN was penciled in as the starter, better get that eraser out.  The sophomore led the freshmen team last year and had earned the starting spot during spring ball.  He went through summer as the starter and the day that the Maroon and Gold handed out gear for training camp, then he went down for the year with a growth plate issue.  Taking his spot was going to be the starting wide receiver TRE OWENS.  With as small of a squad that the Monarchs have, look for a quarterback by committee.

Photo courtesy of TRyan Photography

Photo courtesy of TRyan Photography

“We were really looking forward to our little sophomore throwing to Tre Owens at wide out and that was a pretty good combination there,” head coach RON HAMAMOTO said.

Running back: The Summer was not kind to Monte Vista as far as running backs were concerned.  After spring ball, DEONDRE McKINLEY decided to hang the cleats up in favor of the high tops of basketball.  DeONTAE McKINNEY on the second day of camp turned in his gear and transferred to Helix.  So… into the starting lineup comes RASHAUN WILLIS-BROWN, JALONTAE JONES, DAMAR BROWN, CAMERON JONES or JACCOB JARDIM.

Wide receivers: KIMO TAUSAGA was a transfer from Mount Miguel.  But the Monarchs have sent out a search party for him since he hasn’t been seen since getting injured in passing league.  DARRYLE JOHNSON, XAVIER JASPER, DANIEL CONTRERAS and PERRY STEELE will be fighting to be the opening night starters.

Offensive line: The lone returning starter for the Monarchs from 2014 is FERNAN SANCHEZ.  Joining him on the line will be EDUARDO GONZALEZ, DAVID YBARRA, CARLOS ZALVALZA.  Battling for playing time will be DAVON OULDS and ARTURO RODRIGUEZ.

Defensive line: JOSE GONZALEZ, ARTURO VELAZQUEZ and CURTIS STEVENS will be making up the core of the D-Line.

Photo courtesy of TRyan Photography

Photo courtesy of TRyan Photography

Linebackers: AGAPE KYLE and CAMRYN BUTLER were part-time starters a year ago.  This season they are leading the defense.  ANDREW CANTY will also be playing a good portion of the time.

Defensive backs: ADERO JOHNSON and TORREY MACK (the nephew of the great running back DARRELL MACK) will start at DB this year.

Opening night the last three years usually indicates a meeting with Serra High.  Not this year as the Conquistadors have dropped the Monarchs from their schedule.  In their place steps fellow City League member Hoover.

September will open with a short road game at Steele Canyon as the neighboring schools are only four miles apart from each other.  The 11th will see the Monarchs travel to San Carlos to take on the Patrick Henry Patriots.  Week four of the season will be the “Battle of Spring Valley” as Mount Miguel will host the Monarchs in a back yard type of game.  The final week of September will see 2014 Division V playoff participant Crawford at Monarch Stadium to start a three game homestand.

Kearny will open up October with a contest on the second.  Week seven will see the opening of Grossmont Valley League play with Santana coming to Spring Valley to wrap up the homestand.  The third Friday of the month will feature a road game at El Cajon Valley.  The final game of the month for the Monarchs will be on the 23rd at Granite Hills.

After a bye week, the Monarchs will close out with a home contest against West Hills.

“I thought we had four kids coming up from the freshman squad that were going to be Division I guys, and due to various injuries and transfers they are not playing with us,” Hamamoto concluded.

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