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The San Clemente football team will look to improve last year's 1-3 South Coast League record in 2013. Photo by Andrea Papagianis
The San Clemente football team will look to improve last year’s 1-3 South Coast League record in 2013. Photo by Andrea Papagianis

We break down the 2013 San Clemente football schedule

By Steve Breazeale

Game One

August 30

Jordan

Location: San Clemente High
Time: 7 p.m.
Coach: John Kane
League: Moore
2012-2013 record: 5-5 (3-3 league)
2012-2013 vs. SCHS: DNP

Season Outlook:
Jordan will be without star receiver/kick returner and University of Washington-bound John Ross, who provided much of the Panthers’ offensive punch last season. The loss of Ross, along with go-to running back Marquise McGuire, will be a void the Panthers will need to fill if they are to compete in the perennially tough Moore League.

The Panthers will field a veteran offensive line this year, with the likes of Mace Asaeli, Eric Cordova and Siaosi Pahulu all returning. These three linemen helped pave the way for McGuire’s running game last year and could provide the protection and blocking necessary to keep the Panthers’ offense going into the new season.

Game Two

September 6

Cabrillo

Location: San Clemente High
Time: 7 p.m.
Coach: Jason Brown
League: Moore
2012-2013 record: 3-8 (3-3 league)
2012 vs. SC: Loss, 37-6

Season Outlook:
A lot of their success will be determined by quarterback Kaelon Price, who played in all 11 of the Jaguars’ games last year as a junior. Price had a relatively clean touchdown to interception ratio of 12:7 and led a balanced attack.

Junior running back Rico Martin had a breakout sophomore season, averaging 6.49 yards per carry, and figures to be in the mix again.
The one spot where Cabrillo’s depth charts took a hit was in the receiving corps, where they lost five seniors who reeled in at least 10 catches each.

Game Three

September 12

Dana Hills

Location: Dana Hills High
Time: 7 p.m.
Coach: Todd Rusinkovich
League: Sea View
2012-2013 record: 4-6 (3-1 league)
2012 vs. SC: Loss, 42-14

Season Outlook:
Dana Hills will have a lot to be confident about heading into the new year, having claimed the school’s first-ever league title in 2013. They will be missing several impact seniors but return their starting quarterback, Mac Vail, and running back Brian Scott.

After starting out 0-5 on the season, the Dolphins rallied in league play, going 3-1. The Dolphins players have proven they can face adversity, like losing five straight games to start their season, and bounce back.

What they will have this season is a full year of Scott getting a lions’ share of the touches in the backfield. In four games started last year he amassed 435 yards and scored five touchdowns. With the Dolphins receiving corps taking a hit to graduation and transfers, expect to see an emphasis on the running game.

Game Four

September 20

La Costa Canyon

Location: San Clemente High
Time: 7 p.m.
Coach: Scott Sovacool
League: Avocado-West
2012-2013 record: 7-4 (3-1 league)
2012 vs. SC: Loss, 21-10

Season Outlook:
La Costa Canyon has been a mainstay on the Tritons preseason roster for the past three years and for good reason. The Mavericks have proven to be a tough preseason opponent out of the San Diego Section and have earned a berth in the CIF playoffs in each of the past nine seasons. San Clemente has gotten the better of the team from the south in their past three meetings.

La Costa Canyon did their damage on the ground last year, racking up 2,134 total rushing yards. Departed senior Deon Dickey provided 1,267 of those yards and will not be a factor this time around. Senior Jake Mann figures to replace Dickey as the go-to running back.

Game Five

September 27

Newport Harbor

Location: San Clemente High
Time: 7 p.m.
Coach: Jeff Brinkley
League: Sunset
2012-2013 record: 7-5 (4-1 league)
2012 vs. SC: Win, 28-7

Season Outlook:
Newport Harbor has had a lot of success under head coach Jeff Brinkley and will look to build on their impressive 2013 campaign. The Sailors finished second in the Sunset League last year behind eventual CIF-SS Southwest Champion Edison and advanced to the second round of the playoffs.

The Sailors had a streaky run last season, dropping preseason games to Loyola and Trabuco Hills but rattled off close victories over Huntington Beach and Los Alamitos. They’ll need to be more consistent in league if they want to compete with Edison.

Game Six

October 4

Edison

Location: Edison High
Time: 7 p.m.
Coach: Dave White
League: Sunset
2012-2013 record: 13-2 (5-0 league)
2012 vs. SC: Win, 31-3

Season Outlook:
Edison turned in a truly dominant performance in 2013. They captured the Sunset League title, the CIF-SS Southwest championship and played in the CIF Division II Regional Championship game, where they lost to eventual champion Serra.

The Chargers had a potent offense but where they made their bed was on the defensive side of the ball. In 15 games Edison’s defense allowed an average of 7.8 points to be scored against them. During the regular season that number dropped to an astounding 4.7 points per game allowed. The main defensive leaders of the team have departed but that should not stop longtime head coach Dave White from digging into his depth charts to find players who can produce.

Game Seven

October 11

El Toro

Location: San Clemente High
Time: 7 p.m.
Coach: Robert Frith
League: South Coast
2012-2013 record: 9-2 (3-1 league)
2012 vs. SC: Win, 49-37

Season Outlook:
Last year’s El Toro team was an offensive juggernaut, powering their way to the first round of the CIF Pac-5 playoffs, where they drew Santa Margarita in the first round. El Toro’s offense had their way with opposing defenses, scoring 35 points or more eight times on the year. But Conner Manning, the county record setting quarterback behind that offense, is gone.

That makes the big question mark for El Toro heading into the season fairly obvious. Who will fill in at quarterback? Junior Trey Tinsley seems to be the likely successor.

Manning’s favorite target, receiver Dominic Collins, will be back for his senior year.

Game Eight

October 18

Mission Viejo

Location: Mission Viejo High
Time: 7 p.m.
Coach: Bob Johnson
League: South Coast
2012-2013 record: 11-1 (4-0 league)
2012 vs. SC: Win, 45-7

Season Outlook:
As always, Mission Viejo will enter the new season as one of the top ranked teams in the county and the state. The Diablos breezed their way to another South Coast League title last year and with returners like Ian Fieber (quarterback), Alek Suchesk (running back) and Andrew Schuurs (wide receiver) the skill positions on offense are all in place for another repeat.

The Diablos also got some added depth in the form of transfers. Senior defensive tackle Nick Dehdashtian transferred in from Santa Margarita and should be an impact player. Former Dana Hills receiver Connor Hill also transferred to Mission Viejo.

Game Nine

November 1

Tesoro

Location: San Clemente High
Time: 7 p.m.
Coach: Matt Poston
League: South Coast
2012-2013 record: 7-4 (1-3 league)
2012 vs. SC: Loss, 29-21

Season Outlook:
Amid a torrent of changes, the Tesoro football program will look to right itself under the direction of new head coach Matt Poston. Former coach Brian Barnes was removed from duties with one week still to play last year and Tesoro did not look far for finding his replacement in Poston. Poston comes to Tesoro from Capistrano Valley, where he was at the helm for three years. Poston has ties to the Tesoro program, having served as an assistant and freshman head coach for the program in 2001.

Poston will inherit a team that has been on the rise in recent years and appeared in the first round of the Pac-5 Championships last year.

Game Ten

November 8

Trabuco Hills

Location: Trabuco Hills High
Time: 7 p.m.
Coach: Scott Orloff
League: South Coast
2012-2013 record: 5-5 (1-3 league)
2012 vs. SC: Win, 21-14

Season Outlook:
The Mustangs had a bit of turnover on their depth charts but have solid returning players to build around that could bring them out of the bottom of the South Coast League. Junior wide receiver Jacob Breeland and senior running back Jordan Hettinger should sure up some of the skill positions.

Defensive end Nick Leduc had a nice junior season, racking up 75 total tackles while leading the team with five sacks. If Trabuco Hills can find the pieces to fill in the gaps they could have a solid season.

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