Sports

Tuesday, Aug 20 2013 06:00 AM

Pre-League schedule should be strong test for Warriors

Over the next few weeks, we will be breaking down the Warriors football schedule for 2013.

The action gets underway this week on Saturday, Aug 17, with an intra-squad scrimmage beginning at 8 a.m. at Coy Burnett Field, just after the conclusion of team pictures.

This week, we will analyze the preseason games for Tehachapi and next week we will dive into the Southeast Yosemite League schedule (East, Highland, North, Foothill and Garces).

Below is a breakdown of the pre-season games scheduled for Tehachapi this year.

 

Aug. 23: Tehachapi at South-Bakersfield (Scrimmage)

Probably more than any scrimmage in the valley, this one will probably have the most significance in signaling in the new season for Kern County teams. All eyes will be on the coaches, players and fans at South. Earlier this summer, longtime South head coach John Wren passed away in his sleep and summer workouts have been a heart-wrenching lesson in perseverance for the players he left behind. Even though he cannot be replaced, South will undoubtedly be looking forward to their first action on the field and will want to play strong for their late head coach. South should be a good early test for the Warriors, who finished the season with a winning record in 2012 and a second place finish in the South Yosemite League behind Ridgeview.

Opponent's 2012 Record: 7-5 (3-1 South Yosemite League)

Opponent's Top Player Returning: #2 Keith Evans - Senior (252 yards passing, 638 yards rushing, 8 TDs)

Game Times: Varsity (7 p.m.), Junior Varsity and Freshmen (5 p.m. -- split field)

Last Season: No Score - Scrimmage

All-Time Series Record: Tehachapi leads 2-0

 

Aug. 30: Exeter at Tehachapi

Exeter is widely considered one of the toughest small schools in the central section, boasting a modest student population of just over 1,000 students last year. The Monarchs exploited the Warrior defense in 2012 to the tune of five touchdowns, virtually matching Mountain Football punch-for-punch before Tehachapi pulled away in the second half. Another shootout could be in the cards in the home opener, especially with junior Austin Cardoza back for Exeter (145 yards rushing and two TDs against THS). Also on the docket for week 1 is a meeting with Centennial for the Freshman Indians, which was recently scheduled by THS AD Patrick Snyder due to Exeter's lack of a frosh-soph team. Snyder also confirmed that along with the frosh playing Centennial this season, all three levels of Mountain Football will square off with the Golden Hawks for a pre-league match-up in 2014.

 

Opponent's 2012 Record: 5-6 (2-2 Central Sequoia League)

Opponent's Top Player Returning: #33 Austin Cardoza - Junior (1,706 yards rushing, 23 TDs)

Game Times: Varsity (7:30 p.m.), Junior Varsity (5 p.m.), Freshmen (5 p.m. -- at Centennial-Bakersfield)

Last Season: Tehachapi won 55-35

All-Time Series Record: Tehachapi leads 3-0

 

Sept. 6: Burroughs-Ridgecrest at Tehachapi

After winning the Southern Section Division VII CIF championship in 2005, Head Coach Jeff Steinberg parlayed his team's success by taking an opportunity to leave for A.B. Miller HS. Needless to say, it has been a coaching carousel for the Burros ever sense. Replacing Steinberg was Chad Stoner (2006), Tehachapi Alum Matt Gracey (2007-2010) and current head coach, Todd Mather (2011 to present). Burroughs seems to have finally found stability with Mather, a BHS alum, who was recently quoted in the Bakersfield Californian saying, "(This is) the first time I feel like it's really my program." The Burros gave the Warriors all they could handle in last year's meeting, holding Tehachapi scoreless through three quarters before Tehachapi's offense came alive, eventually winning off a late Skylar Valencia touchdown with less than a minute to go in the game. With Mather at the helm preaching discipline and defense, it promises to be another hard-nosed battle between these two schools again this year.

 

Opponent's 2012 Record: 6-6 (3-1 Desert Sky League)

Opponent's Top Player Returning: #33 Trevor Baker - Senior (612 yards rushing, 11 TDs)

Game Times: Varsity (7:30 p.m.), Junior Varsity (5 p.m.), Freshmen (5 p.m. -- Thursday)

Last Season: Tehachapi won 22-15

All-Time Series Record: Tehachapi leads 13-8

 

Sept. 13: Tehachapi at Liberty

Without question, this game promises to be the toughest for Mountain Football in 2013. Last season, the Patriots handed Tehachapi their most lopsided loss in their 11 game campaign, forcing Warrior quarterback Bobby Howell out of the contest near the end of the first half with a concussion. Liberty should be a contender for the CIF Division I championship this season, led by the return of their quarterback Josh Medina and running back Anthony Mariscal. Both players combined for four touchdowns last season against the Warriors, with Medina throwing for 172 yards and three TDs. This game should be a great early test for THS in the pre-season with a touch matchup with Garces looming in week 10.

 

Opponent's 2012 Record: 8-5 (3-2 Southwest Yosemite League)

Opponent's Top Player Returning: #6 Josh Medina - Senior (1,831 yards passing, 18 TDs; #34 Justin Nieto - Senior (87 tackles, 4 sacks)

Game Times: Varsity (7:30 p.m.), Junior Varsity (5 p.m.), Freshmen (5 p.m. -- Thursday)

Last Season: Liberty won 45-7

All-Time Series Record: Tehachapi leads 2-1

 

Sept. 20: Tehachapi at Arvin

Tehachapi followed up their worst loss of the season last year with arguably their finest just one week later against Arvin. With many new Warriors having to step up into a revamped starting lineup, Tehachapi pulled out an impressive win to give the Bears their first loss of the season. Then-freshman Chris Llamas threw two touchdown passes and returning defensive starters Angel Garcia and Ty Curry stuffed the line of scrimmage to relinquish only a meager 88 yards rushing. The Bears will lose a lot of firepower from last season with Orlando Perez (1,651 yards rushing, 19 TDs) and starting QB Jordan Wood (667 yards passing, 434 yards rushing, 9 TDs) lost to graduation, but with a student population of nearly 2,500 students, it is highly probable that Arvin will find talent to fill the void.

 

Opponent's 2012 Record: 7-5 (3-3 South Sequoia League)

Opponent's Top Player Returning: #21 Carlos Parra (129 yards rushing, 1 TD)

Game Times: Varsity (7:30 p.m.), Junior Varsity (5 p.m.), Freshmen (5 p.m. -- Thursday)

Last Season: Tehachapi won 23-13

All-Time Series Record: Tehachapi leads 18-4

 

Oct. 4: West at Tehachapi

The Warriors will have their bye week after Arvin and schedule-wise it comes at a great time. The extra practice will help the Warriors in a pivotal matchup with West in the final tune-up before league. West ended Tehachapi's season in the Division II playoffs last year and both teams will be looking to affirm momentum heading into league and possible high seed playoff positioning when the regular season concludes. Quarterback Enrique Salazar is back for the Vikings, who led his team with 172 yards passing and two TDs in the playoff win over Tehachapi last year. Also back is running back Staley Dubbard, who was the top rusher and scorer for West in 2012. Motivation on the Warrior's side should be at its peak with homecoming festivities surrounding the big game.

 

Opponent's 2012 Record: 6-7 (2-2 South Yosemite League)

Opponent's Top Player Returning: #12 Enrique Salazar (1,612 yards passing, 16 TDs); #25 Stanley Dubbard (1,374 yards rushing, 13 TDs)

Game Times: Varsity (7:30 p.m.), Junior Varsity (5 p.m.), Freshmen (5 p.m. -- Thursday)

Last Season: Tehachapi won 34-29 (regular season), West won 31-13 (playoffs)

All-Time Series Record: Tehachapi leads 2-1

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