NorCal/SoCal Players of the Week

Two of this week’s NorCal/SoCal Players of the Week are Casey Granfors from University City (San Diego) and Ben Yurosek of Bakersfield Christian. Photos: &

One of this week’s honorees is from a team that has been dealing with the death of a player for the last month, but the numbers are all there for Lincoln of Stockton QB Quinton Gaines. We also have picks this week from Bakersfield, Tuolomne, Norco, San Diego and Palos Verdes Estates.

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Note: For these honors, we consider CIF Central Section players for Northern California. To nominate someone by 12 noon on most Mondays, email

Cal-Hi Sports Northern California
Offensive Player of the Week

Quinton Gaines
(Lincoln, Stockton) Sr.

It’s been a rough season for head coach Anthony Martinez and his boys. After a 1-2 start and after a defeat at the hands of Elk Gove, the Trojans also suffered the loss of senior running back Cameron Allison Jr. after he was killed in a car accident.

Since then, they’re 3-1 with the loss a heartbreaker at Vintage Napa, and a big reason for their resurgence is the arm and legs of Gaines, who has produced lots of yardage gained.

Last week, in a 56-0 shellacking of visiting Lodi, the 6-foot-1, 175-pound dual-threat quarterback was a pinpoint 15 of 18 passing for 338 yards and five touchdowns despite giving way in the fourth quarter to 6-foot-5, 185-pound junior Grant Stevenson, who added two more TD passes. Gaines was also able to gain 57 yards rushing.

It’s the third straight week Gaines has been around 80 percent completion average. Two weeks ago, in an identical 56-0 blanking of West (Tracy), and also in a shortened appearance, Gaines was 15 of 19 passing for 247 yards with four TD passes. In the 24-21 loss to Vintage, he went 29 for 36 for 336 yards and two TDs but also had one of three interceptions he’s tossed this season to go with 19 TDs and 1,891 yards passing.

We know how hard it’s been for the Lincoln community to deal the loss of Cameron and we know that one of the reasons for Gaines doing so well is that he and the team are doing it in Cam’s memory.

Cal-Hi Sports Northern California
Defensive Player of the Week

Ben Yurosek
(Bakersfield Christian) Soph.

If you’re asking who the NorCal Defensive Player of the Week is you’re in the right place, because even though he’s only a sophomore it’s Ben Yurosek.

Bakersfield Christian head Coach Darren Carr had a lot more fun watching Yurosek on defense in a 42-23 victory over Shafter last Friday night than he did last Sunday when he had to suffer through watching his brother and former Eagles star Derek Carr and his Oakland Raiders lose in the final moments to the Los Angeles Chargers.

Yurosek, who as a freshman was on the varsity team that lost to Moraga Campolindo in the CIF Division 4-AA Bowl Game last season, was a one man wrecking crew.

The 6-foot-5, 215-pound defensive end and tight end had five sacks, intercepted a pass he returned 13 yards, and six of his seven tackles were for a loss. Yurosek didn’t score on offense but he did have five pass receptions for 65 yards.

At his size, Yurosek is also a force on the basketball court. Last season as a freshman on varsity he was the No. 2 scorer on the team with an 8.8 ppg scoring average.

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

Luke Fulkerson
(Summerville, Tuolumne) Sr.

For special teams in the north we go almost 100 miles due east of Stockton past New Melones Lake and past Sonora to the Stanislaus Forest just to the Northwest of Yosemite National Park. And if you don’t think they play football out there think again.

The Bears are 6-1 with a Mother Lode League loss to Sonora but their nearby arch rivals are in a higher division and Summerville is looking like it’s going to be a factor in Division VI in the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs.

Fulkerson isn’t the only fulcrum in the attack of head coach Sean Leveroos but he’s a pretty big cog in the wheel. Besides his special teams prowess, Fulkerson has been used as a running back and wide receiver on offense and free safety on defense

Last week, Luke was everywhere in an important 42-37 victory at Argonaut of Jackson. Fulkerson is being honored for special teams but he did a lot more in that game and all season.

For the second time this year he returned a kickoff for a TD with this one going 98 yards. Two weeks ago he returned one 90 yards in the loss to Sonora. He also returned a punt for a score against Sonora and had a punt return for a TD the previous week in a big win over Linden. That’s four kick return TDs in three weeks, a number that may prevent any other teams giving him a chance for more.

On offense and defense in the Argonaut win, Fulkerson was just as effective. He had five pass receptions for a season-high 155 yards receiving and two touchdowns. Plus, he had one interception and 10 tackles. What a performance.

Norco’s Travis Dye has rushed for nearly 1,200 yards this season even though he missed a full game with an ankle injury. Dye has committed to Oregon. Photo:

Cal-Hi Sports Southern California
Offensive Player of the Week

Travis Dye
(Norco) Sr.

We go out to the Inland Empire for this week’s SoCal offensive honoree and we found a good one that’s the backbone of the offense of the Cal-Hi Sports No. 31 ranked Cougars.

After nursing a bad ankle that kept him out of one game and part of another in a three-loss stretch to open the season, Dye, who will be following his brother Troy Dye to Oregon, has come alive big-time running with the football the past four weeks.

In a 49-0 shellacking last week of Riverside M.L. King, the 5-foot-11, 188-pound speedster got loose 21 times for 374 yards rushing with two touchdowns.

Despite missing a good chunk of Norco’s first seven games, Dye still has 1,208 yards and 17 touchdowns on the season.

Cal-Hi Sports Southern California
Defensive Player of the Week

Casey Granfors
(University City, San Diego) Jr.

We only had one honoree make the Cal-Hi Sports Record Book this week and for that honoree we go to the San Diego Section and find him as the SoCal Defensive Player of the Week.

In order to make the list in the record book for Longest Pass Interception Returns (Yards) you have to take one back 105 yards and that exactly how far Granfors danced and pranced to pay dirt in a 56-3 win over crosstown Serra.

Besides that pick six, the 6-foot-3, 205-pound strong safety, wide receiver, slot-back and back-up quarterback who also plays basketball, had a second interception in the game.

Not surprisingly, on offense the Centurions’ leading wide receiver snagged four catches for 120 yards and one TD, plus he ran it five times for 47 yards and one TD to give him three different scores in the game.

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

Derek Roah
(Palos Verdes, Palos Verdes Estates) Soph.

After the performance of Roah, about all the Palos Verdes Sea Kings fans could say was “whoa.”

Some kickers thrive on the games coming down to their leg and other loathe it, but Roah made the most of his opportunities last Friday night culminating in a 42-yard field goal attempt that split the uprights as time expired in a 37-35 Palos Verdes victory over rival Redondo Union in a game the Sea Kings nearly blew if not for his heroics.

Roah was perfect on two other field goal attempts including a 33-yarder midway through the third quarter that gave the Sea Kings a 34-14 lead.

With the way the visiting Sea Hawks came back from that deficit, the Sea Kings’ faithful sure must have been relieved but nervous to see the sophomore make the boot. After all, Roah hadn’t blown a kick all night since he made all four PAT attempts as well.

Harold Abend is the associate editor of and the vice president of the California Prep Sportswriters Association. He can be reached at Don’t forget to follow him on Twitter: @HaroldAbend

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  1. joseph parks
    Posted October 17, 2017 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

    Kazmier Allen Tulare Union had 7 TDs AGAIN and leads the Nation

    • Mark Tennis
      Posted October 17, 2017 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

      And he’s been picked before.

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