The Tribune's Top 10 Prep Football Rankings
Team — Record — First-place votes — Points — Last week
1. (tie) Paso Robles 6-0 — 4 — 85 — 1
1. (tie) Lompoc 6-0 — 4 — 85 — 1
3. (tie) Atascadero 5-1 — 0 — 68 — 4
3. (tie) Arroyo Grande 5-1 — 0 — 68 — 3
5. Nipomo 3-3 — 0 — 47 — 5
6. (tie) Templeton 5-1 — 0 — 42 — 7
6. (tie) Righetti 3-2 — 0 — 42 — 6
8. St. Joseph 3-3 — 0 — 24 — 10
9. Pioneer Valley 2-3 — 0 — 12 — 8
10. Mission Prep 3-3 — 0 — 10 — 9
Others receiving votes: Morro Bay 2-4 — 6; San Luis Obispo 2-4 — 3; Santa Ynez 1-5 — 2
Voters this week: Ashley Conklin (The Tribune), Kenny Cress (Santa Maria Times), Mike Moreno (KZOZ 93.3 FM), Matt SantaMaria (KSBY), Joshua D. Scroggin (The Tribune), Jeff Poirier (Paso Robles Press), Tom Sepulveda (The Tribune), Alex J. Jankowski (The Tribune), Mike Abram (ESPN 1280 AM).
A look at this week's matchups:
ARROYO GRANDE (5-1) AT PASO ROBLES (6-0), 7 P.M.
Last week: Arroyo Grande 34, Nipomo 27; Paso Robles 63, Morro Bay 10.
Players to Watch: Arroyo Grande — Since a season-opening loss to Lompoc, the Eagles have outscored their opponents 192-85 in wins over Independence, St. Joseph, Pioneer Valley, Liberty and Nipomo. Bradley Mickey has caught a team-high 32 passes for 368 yards and five TDs in addition to four interceptions and a fumble recovery. Sophomore LB Sam Ness is averaging 10.2 tackles a game, and classmate QB Sawyer May is completing 65.9 percent of his passes with 13 scores and just one pick. Paso Robles — The Bearcats are averaging 45 points per game and haven’t scored less than 31 in any contest so far this year. Bailey Gaither leads the CIF-Southern Section in receiving yards (798), averaging 133.0 yards per game and 23.5 yards per catch on 34 receptions with 12 touchdowns. Sophomore RB Christian Erickson ranks in the top 15 in the Southern Section in rushing yards (883) and carries (123).
NOTE: Arroyo Grande is the fifth-ranked team in the CIF-Southern Section Northern Division poll. Paso Robles is first in the Northern Division.
SAN LUIS OBISPO (2-4) AT RIGHETTI (3-2), 7 P.M.
Last week: San Luis Obispo 40, Cabrillo 35; Lompoc 42, Righetti 22.
Players to Watch: San Luis Obispo — Backup QB Omeed Djassemi filled in for injured starter Sam Thompson and found Nate Greenelsh for a game-winning touchdown pass in the waning seconds of last weekend’s win over Cabrillo. Djassemi also threw TD passes to Dante Cappellano and Sean Aversano. Greenelsh also ran for 81 yards and returned one of his two interceptions for a touchdown. Anthony Ramos also recorded a pick in the win. Righetti — Senior RB Eli Wilkinson has rushed for a team-high 451 yards and four scores on 80 carries. Junior Deandre Thomas is second on the team in rushing with 316 yards and four TDs on 33 carries. Senior Steven Spadarotto has 512 of the Warriors’ 811 receiving yards on 29 receptions with four scores. Thomas and Spadarotto both have two interceptions as well.
MISSION PREP (3-3) AT TEMPLETON (5-1), 7 P.M.
Last week: Bishop Diego 31, Mission Prep 14; Templeton 47, Santa Ynez 7.
Players to Watch: Mission Prep — Carson Brown hauled in five catches for 68 yards and a touchdown for the Royals in last week’s loss to undefeated Bishop Diego. The defense held the Cardinals rushing attack to just 39 yards on 28 carries. Senior LB Jack Balentine leads the team in tackles with 20, and scored on a 5-yard run in the fourth quarter last week to cap 12-carry, 64-yard second-half rushing performance. Dyllan Smiley is averaging 145.0 rushing yards a game on 122 carries with six touchdowns. Templeton — The Eagles have rattled off five straight wins following a one-win 2013 campaign and a season-opening loss to Bakersfield Christian. Junior QB Jordan Bernal is completing 62.0 percent of his passes for an average of 121.3 yards per game while splitting time under center with senior Gunnar Griffin. Bryson Messer has a team-high 380 rushing yards, while Christian Hauser has a team-high 435 receiving yards and 298 more yards on the ground. Fellow senior Easton Coy has a team-high 60 tackles, and has three of the Eagles’ 17 sacks.
NOTE: Mission Prep is the 10th-ranked team in the CIF-Southern Section Northwest Division poll. Templeton is sixth in the Northwest Division.
MORRO BAY (2-4) AT NIPOMO (3-3), 7 P.M.
Last week: Paso Robles 63, Morro Bay 10; Arroyo Grande 34, Nipomo 27.
Players to Watch: Morro Bay — The Pirates are averaging 193.2 yards per game on the ground, led by Will Unks’ 533 yards and seven scores on 67 carries. Quarterback Isaac Manaputy has also rushed for 286 yards and a score. Mario Barragan and Noah Garcia lead the team in tackling with 44 and 42 stops, respectively. Nick Meyers has a team-high three sacks, and Elijah Garcia has all four of the Pirates’ interceptions. Nipomo — Quarterback Matt Albright’s 1,668 yards rank seventh in the Southern Section. His 123 completions rank fifth, and his 185 attempts are sixth. Senior RB Chris Owens surpassed the 600-yard plateau last week, and is at 607 yards and nine rushing scores. He also caught four balls for 100 yards and a score in the loss to Arroyo Grande. Five receivers have at least 200 yards receiving, led by Nick Kimball’s 24 catches for 504 yards and nine scores. Peyton Witcher had a game-high 14 tackles in the loss to Arroyo Grande.
NOTE: Morro Bay received votes in the CIF-Southern Section Northwest Division poll. Nipomo is fifth in the Northwest Division.
VALLEY CHRISTIAN ACADEMY (4-1) AT COAST UNION (0-5), 7 P.M.
Last week: Valley Christian Academy 46, Northwest Christian 26; Riverdale Christian 28, Coast Union 21.
Players to Watch: Valley Christian Academy — Junior QB Christian Rhode has thrown 12 touchdowns on 32-of-61 passing for 550 yards through five games. Sebastian Debernardi and Bryce Taft are both over 300 yards rushing with 345 and 307, respectively. Taft also averages 14 tackles per game. Coast Union — The Broncos couldn’t hold a 14-8 halftime lead in their closest defeat of the season last week. Binh Trieu rushed for 113 yards on 16 carries with a touchdown, and QB Alexis Mierles threw for 147 yards in addition to 89 yards and two scores on the ground. Jake McAvoy caught six passes for 98 yards.
NOTE: Valley Christian Academy is tied for 10th in the CIF-Southern Section Division 2 8-man poll.