The Wildcats are getting ready in the hot summer sun as they prepare for the 2014 football season. Bert Esposito heads into his eleventh year as Head Coach as he built the Football program at Paloma Valley in 2002. The Wildcats were the Sunbelt League Co-Champions in 2005, 06, 07, 08, and 09 under Esposito. They have finished second to Heritage the past few years. Paloma Valley was 10-2 in 2013.
“Our goals are the same as every season” said Coach Esposito. “We want to have a great and exciting season of football, and that all of my kids love being a part of the Wildcat Football. We have built a family here at Paloma. Winning games is a byproduct of the process.”
“I expect my kids give everything they have on the field, off the field, in the classroom and at home. Then they will leave Paloma Valley ready for the world,” he added.
Juan Merida is the Paloma Valley offensive coordinator and his Wildcat’s can score points and move the chains.
They scored 520 points last season and averaged 209 yards in the air and 195 on the ground last year. This year there is a battle between Jake Newton and Pohaku Pavia for the quarterback starting spot. “It’s too close to call right now,” Esposito said.
Juior DeMarco Prewitt will move the chains on the ground for the Wildcats. Prewitt carried the ball 154 times for 1322 yards and scored 22 Touchdown last year. Elliott Smith is the other running back. Jacob Diaz. David Hamilton, Mhalik Jones and Noah Suniga are quick and dangerous receivers that can change games in a “PalomaValley minute”.
“We believe our Offensive Line will be very good this year. We return three starters, Anthony Sifuentes, Evan McGuire and Max Pichardo” said Esposito. “We have added transfer Luis Castro, and our up and coming linemen Jared Decker and Noah Holstein to fortify the O line”.
The Wildcat defensive line is tough and anchored by Mose Herrera and Ashton Morgan. Linebackers Anthony Adcock and Jose Cruz are expected to be the heart and soul of the Paloma Valley defense. They will be tough to move the ball against. Returning defensive backs Ruben Colon, Isaac Ouk and Fred Lundy will be patrolling the Wildcat secondary and ready to shut down opposing passing attacks.
“Obviously we want to win them all” said Esposito. “We have some good teams to play, starting with JW North. We then host the Clackamas Cavaliers, a 6A quarterfinalist from Portland Oregon. ML King, Tustin and Temecula Valley will give us a very well rounded non league season and each team brings something different to the field that will help prepare us for a very tough league”.
The Sunbelt League will be tough again this year. “Every team in our league will be a challenge as Perris and Lakeside will be vastly improved” said Esposito. “Temescal Canyon and Elsinore always bring their “A” game and are real physical when we play”.
Then there is Heritage. The Patriots have not lost a league game since joining the Sunbelt League four years ago. It will be up to the Wildcats to unseat the Champions. “I look forward to the challenge,” Esposito said. “This year just got way more difficult to win CIF with us going into the Inland Division, but that is what it’s all about. We will do our best every week.”