NorCal/SoCal Players of the Week

Damian Owens from Clovis West of Fresno (left) and Joseph Wicker of Long Beach Poly (right) are also major college recruits, but not all we're going to choose as a NorCal/SoCal Player of the Week will be the same. Photos: Student Sports.

Darian Owens from Clovis West of Fresno (left) and Joseph Wicker of Long Beach Poly (right) are also major college recruits, but not all of those we’re going to choose as a NorCal/SoCal Player of the Week will be the same. Photos: Student Sports.


Only one is named from each region for offense, defense and special teams and we’re going to do our best to spread it around as much as possible. This week’s honors go to Waterford, Clovis West, Liberty of Brentwood, Buena Park, Long Beach Poly and Capistrano Valley.

Note: For purposes of this feature, we are considering the CIF Central Section to be in the north.

To nominate a player for next week, email markjtennis@gmail.com by Monday at 12 noon and be sure to include a photo that we can use (which means it’s not from the local newspaper or from another web site). Please feel free to call at 209-463-9050 as well both for nominations or to see if your business or small company would like to become a sponsor for this weekly content. Thanks to Stockton office assistant Paul Muyskens for contributing to these selections and writeups.

Cal-Hi Sports Northern California
Offensive Player of the Week

Dante Berggren (Waterford) Sr.
He only got to carry the ball nine times for the Wildcats during their 37-18 season-opening win over Riverbank, but he made the most of those carries by rushing for 256 yards and six touchdowns. Included in those six touchdown runs was a carry that will get him listed in our state record book as he rushed for a 99-yard score to go with touchdown runs of 1,16,29,30 and 59 yards. Last season, Berggren rushed for just 356 yards and four touchdown on the year. He’s obviously ready for a breakout senior season.
Players to Watch 120
Cal-Hi Sports Northern California
Defensive Player of the Week

Darian Owens (Clovis West, Fresno) Jr.
This special talent was ranked at No. 14 in our state’s best WR/TE player rankings (including seniors) and could be the best junior wideout in the state. It was his performance on the defensive side of the ball for the Golden Eagles, however, that stood out during Week 0 as he intercepted four passes during a 49-39 win over Merced. Owens also had a 41-yard touchdown run and he caught a pass and went 83 yards for another six points. First catching our eye last spring at the Oakland NFTC, he has offers already from schools like USC and Oklahoma.

Cal-Hi Sports Northern California
Special Teams Player of the Week

Willie Williams (Liberty, Brentwood) Sr.
Helping the Lions to the come from behind 27-26 win over Central of Fresno, Williams returned the opening kickoff of the second half 95 yards for a touchdown and also returned a kickoff 90 yards for six points to cut the deficit to 26-21. He then caught the game-winning 11-yard touchdown pass on the final play of the game. Here is a link to see Willie’s game-winning TD catch: CLICK HERE

Player of the Week 120Cal-Hi Sports Southern California
Offensive Player of the Week

Jaylinn Hawkins (Buena Park) Sr.
It was a career-best performance for Hawkins in the season-opening 65-0 win by the Coyotes over Orange as he caught eight passes for 294 yards and four touchdowns. Hawkins, one of the most dynamic players in Orange County, has offers from Oregon, Cal, Arizona State, Boise State and others. During the preseason, he was No. 38 in our Cal-Hi Sports Class of 2015 Hot 100 player rankings and was later selected to the second unit on our Preseason All-State team.

Cal-Hi Sports Southern California
Defensive Player of the Week

Joseph Wicker (Long Beach Poly, Long Beach) Sr.
No one was quicker to the quarterback during Week 0 than Wicker, the Jackrabbits’ leader of the defensive line. Wicker not only had a reported six sacks during a 54-14 win over Crenshaw of Los Angeles but that total also gets Joseph’s name into the state record book. Named to our preseason All-State second team and All-Long Beach/South Bay team, we mentioned how he looked bigger and quicker at the L.A. Nike Camp and that certainly was the case on Saturday afternoon. The 6-4, 270-pounder also does have Pac-12 offers.

Cal-Hi Sports Southern California
Special Teams Player of the Week

Adam Gordon (Capistrano Valley, Mission Viejo) Sr.
Playing offense, defense and special teams, he did it all during the Cougars’ 37-7 win over Jordan of Long Beach. Gordon kicked four extra points and three field goals while also returning kickoffs and punts. On offense, he caught four passes for 61 yards and one touchdown while on defense he made four tackles and intercepted two passes. According to OCSidelines.com, Gordon has been offered a trip to Army.

Mark Tennis is the co-founder and publisher of CalHiSports.com. He can be reached at markjtennis@gmail.com. Don’t forget to follow Mark on the Cal-Hi Sports Twitter handle: @CalHiSports


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