WSL Athletics Week 1 Review: Stunner in Merced County, The rest all fall down. Week 2 Preview: Can Dos Palos keep the momentum in home opener?
Avenal Buccaneers: Last week, lost 57-0 at McFarland, Week 1 Rank: The Pag Meter, 20th in D-6, Maxpreps, 23rd in D-6. Week 2 Rank: The Pagmeter, 23rd (-3), Maxpreps: 23rd (No Change)
The Joshua Camp Era at Avenal didn’t start off on the right foot last week as they traveled to McFarland to take on a stout Cougars team who has always given Avenal a hard time in years past. And well let’s just say let the hard times roll on as McFarland gave Coach Camp and Avenal their first loss of the season in a shutout 57-0. Avenal will try to forget that last week happened as they will now come back home to the confines of Buccaneer Stadium to host their home opener against the Titans of Orange Cove who is also coming off a loss on the road last week at the hands of the Granite Hills Grizzlies (Porterville) 31-24. Can Captain Camp reverse course and lead Avenal to their first win of 2019? Or will they be going through rough seas for another week?
Week 2: Avenal Buccaneers (0-1) vs. Orange Cove (0-1) 8/30
Coalinga Horned Toads: Last Week, lost 31-28 vs. Orosi, Week 1 Rank: The Pagmeter, 8th in D-5, Maxpreps, 17th in D-5. Week 2 Rank: The Pagmeter, 16th (-8), Maxpreps: 18th (-1)
Coalinga along with their WSL counterparts hoped to earn their 1st win of 2019 on opening night last week…, But just like most of their WSL counterparts last week they suffered their first loss of 2019 in the home/season opener vs. The Cardinals of Orosi in a close game 31-28 which is now back to back losses against Orosi with last year also being on their home opening night. Coach Redding has now gone 2-2 in season openers since taking over which is at .500 so till next season it’s alright. Coalinga will regroup and prepare for an early season test as they will now travel to hostile Caruthers’s Blue Raiders Stadium AKA: “The house that Tom Casanova built”. In which Caruthers in the last two seasons combined are 24-2 including the 2017 Valley Title Team and State Playoff Appearance with Coach Brandon Ward who since taking over in 2015 after Coach Tom Casanova retired has gone (38-12). It’s an already marquee matchup as these two teams could potentially see each other come playoffs but only time will tell. Can Coalinga put Caruthers in a rare position and make them go through back to back losses? Which hasn’t happen since 2015 when Coach Ward took over the program.
Week 2: Coalinga Horned Toads (0-1) @ Caruthers (0-1) 8/30
Tranquillity Tigers: Last Week, lost 33-7 at Parlier, Week 1 Rank: The Pag Meter, 23rd in D-6, Maxpreps, 24th in D-6. Week 2 Rank: The Pagmeter, 22nd in D-6 (+2), Maxpreps, 24th in D-6 (No Change)
Tranquillity Tigers are streaking!!! On a losing streak that has been going on since October 20th, 2017 with a 47-0 loss to Coalinga and has now been extended to a now upsetting 14 games after their opening night road loss in Parlier 33-7. Tranquillity are still very much looking for the answers to their prayers as they have now lost 4 straight season openers with their last win in a season opener going back to 2015 during Juan Sandoval’s tenure as coach with a 56-35 home win vs. Laton. Tranquillity will now have a road trip up to Northern Merced County in a Highway 99 Battle against the Wolves of Livingston High who are coming off their home/season opening win against the Bulldogs of Le Grand. The Tigers of Tranquillity will look to tame the Wolves and earn a win for the first time in 679 days this Friday.
Week 2: Tranquillity Tigers (0-1) @ Livingston (1-0) 8/30
Mendota Aztecs: Last Week, lost 48-42/OT at McLane, Week 1 Rank: The Pag Meter, 16th in D-5, Maxpreps, 18th in D-5. Week 2 Rank: The Pagmeter, 19th in D-5 (-3), Maxpreps, 19th in D-5 (-1)
Mendota looked to start their turnaround comeback season with a road win on last Friday night against McLane at the newly renovated Highlanders Stadium including new turf. Mendota held a 14-point lead entering the 4th quarter but it seems the ghosts from last season came back to haunt the Aztecs as McLane came back to tie and force overtime. McLane on their possession in overtime scored and took care of business and they broke in their new field with a 48-42 overtime win and will now take a week off before traveling to Hanford West on September 6th. Meanwhile Mendota will head back to home to host their home opener against Liberty-Madera Ranchos in which The Aztecs haven’t been able to beat The Hawks since September 2nd 2016 and the score in that one was 26-19 in favor of Mendota…The Aztecs are looking to beat Liberty for the first time at Aztecs Stadium as their only 3 wins against them in series history were all at Hawks Stadium (2005, 2011, 2016). Can Mendota bounce back and finally earn their first home win against Liberty and at least be at .500 before the bye week? Or will they go back to back years with a sub .500 win percentage entering the bye week.
Week 2: Mendota Aztecs (0-1) vs. Liberty-Madera Ranchos (1-0) 8/30
Dos Palos Broncos: Last Week, won 40-35 at Los Banos (Westside War), Week 1 Rank: The Pagmeter, 10th in D-5, Maxpreps, 5th in D-5. Week 2 Rank: The Pag Meter: 5th in D-5 (+5) Maxpreps: 5th in D-5 (No Change)
So it seems so far the “The Second Coming of Calvert” is starting off on the right foot as for the first time last week Dos Palos beat longtime rival Los Banos in the annual Westside War. In a barnburner of a game that came down to the final seconds with Dos Palos scoring the go-ahead touchdown with 17 seconds left, And finally took home the Cotton Bale Trophy which has been in possession of the Los Banos Tigers for 8 years as it was last exchanged back on September 17th 2010 when DP won it also in a close affair 21-20. The win marked the 6th for Dos Palos in the series with wins being recorded according to Maxpreps in (2004,2005,2006,2007,2010 and now 2019). Now Dos Palos will look to bring that momentum along with having homefield advantage as they will host the Roughriders of Roosevelt. As last season these two went in a grueling battle that finally after going into 5 periods of overtime Roosevelt came away with the 16-13 win. The Broncos will now look forward to hopefully ride into the sunset with another win this Friday Night against a tough and resilient Roosevelt squad? We will have to wait and see.
Week 2: Dos Palos Broncos (1-0) vs. Roosevelt (0-1) 8/30
Firebaugh Eagles: Last Week, loss 53-35 vs. Liberty-Madera Ranchos, Week 1 Rank: The Pag Meter, 7th in D-5, Maxpreps,9th in D-5. Week 2 Rank: The Pagmeter, 12th in D-5 (-5) Maxpreps: 10th in D-5 (-1)
Firebaugh are coming off last season as defending WSL Champs and looking to head back into the postseason once again as they started their journey with the Hawks of Liberty-Madera Ranchos. Last Season Liberty showed Firebaugh who was the real king of birds with a 34-3 blowout to open the season. but now times have changed and in the first half it was a back and forth contest which started off with fireworks as Firebaugh punched in a 75yd kickoff return for a touchdown. Liberty responded with an 80yd Rushing Touchdown by #4 Q. Stewart and from there it was an instant classic with the halftime score in favor of Firebaugh 28-24. Second half starts and well Liberty took advantage of several Eagle’s miscues as Matt DeFrancesco threw a Pick-6 and then later in the game Firebaugh coughed up the ball for a scoop-n-score by Liberty’s Cato-Scott. Then Firebaugh had several players go down with cramping issues which was part of the momentum swing that helped Liberty pull away. I talked with Firebaugh’s Head Athletic Trainer Alisa Kirk about the multiple players cramping up and she had this to say “It’s an unfortunate part of the game when you cramp up due to going 100% out on the field. There’s not much research on it but it can be prevented so that it doesn’t happen as frequent as it should by making sure you eat proteins and foods high in potassium and drink water”. Liberty outscored Firebaugh 29-7 to take the game 53-35. Firebaugh will have to shake it off and get ready for one of two road games starting this week on the road at Fowler and then next Thursday Night vs. Roosevelt @ Sunnyside and looking to notch their first win of 2019.
Week 2: Firebaugh Eagles (0-1) at Fowler (1-0) 8/30
WSL Athletics Week 2 Schedule 8/30
Firebaugh Eagles @ Fowler Redcats
Dos Palos Broncos vs. Roosevelt Roughriders
Mendota Aztecs vs. Liberty-Madera Ranchos Hawks
Tranquillity Tigers @ Livingston Wolves
Coalinga Horned Toads @ Caruthers Blue Raiders
Avenal Buccaneers vs. Orange Cove Titans
Quote of the Week: “Even a fool knows you can’t touch the stars, But it won’t keep the wise from trying” Harry Anderson “Harry T. Stone” (Night Court, TV Show)