NorCal/SoCal Players of the Week

Two of this week’s NorCal/SoCal Players of the Week are Ryan Pettway of Long Beach Wilson and Cory McIntyre of Sutter. Photos: & Tony Hord / Shasta County Sports.

We have a special group this week including Calel Aramboles from California School for the Deaf (Fremont), who had a 300-yard rushing game, plus the latest strong-legged kicker from San Diego who booted a 55-yard field goal. We also have another who had two field goals with a long of 47 but did a lot more to lead his team to important win that had all of Northern California watching. In all, the stops this week are also in San Jose, Sutter County, Long Beach and Oxnard.

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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
Special Teams Player of the Week

Cory McIntyre (Sutter) Sr.

The local media in the greater Chico area and around Northern California had a lot coverage with the concern that because Paradise was not in a league this year the possibility existed the Bobcats could go 10-0 in the regular season and not make the CIF Northern Section Division 3 playoffs if Sutter did not beat Orland last week.

Well, just like about everyone that knows anything about football in the Northern Section knew going into the game, the likelihood of Orland pulling off the upset was the longest of shots, and that didn’t happen, and a lot of it had to do with the legs and feet of this running quarterback and kicker.

The bottom line like it’s been most of the season is Cory was the main story last week in a 33-6 victory over Orland. We’re honoring the Sutter running quarterback and placekicker as the NorCal Special Teams Player of the Week, but he did just as much if not more rushing the football.

As a placekicker against Orland, he had two field goals including a booming 47-yarder and one touchback on his one kickoff. He also had two punts for a 45-yard average and he even returned a punt for 23 yards.

Offensively, McIntyre rushed for 260 yards and two touchdowns, including a 53-yarder. He even completed one of 13 passes he’s thrown this season.

At 9-1 with a lone loss to state-ranked Cardinal Newman (Santa Rosa) and going into a first round CIFNS D3 match-up for the No. 2 seed with University Prep of Redding, Cory is 6-of-7 on field goals, punts for a 37.8 yard average with a long of 77 yards, has a team-leading 1,093 yards and 12 TDs rushing, he’s passed for 142 yards, and is second on the team with 155 yards and two TDs receiving.

Forget being from California School for the Deaf (Fremont). Calel is one of the top small school players in Northern California this season. Photo:

Cal-Hi Sports Northern California
Offensive Player of the Week

Calel Aramboles (California School for the Deaf, Fremont) Sr.

Despite the fact the City of Fremont in the southernmost portion of Alameda County has 250,000 residents, it’s been a while since we’ve paid it a visit. This week not only do we land in what used to be all farmland before lots of people arrived, but we also get to honor a special young man who is a multi-purpose star as our Northern California Offensive Player of the Week.

It doesn’t take a genius to know that kids that go to the California School for the Deaf have a hearing impairment, but when it comes to Aramboles it’s done nothing to impair Aramboles on the gridiron since he started playing football and learning to sign the plays around five years ago as a middle-schooler.

Now he’s a 5-foot-11, 233-pound running back and free safety who strikes fear in opponents trying to tackle him or have him coming towards them to make a tackle on defense.

Last week was a perfect example. CSD, as its known, doesn’t play in a league so the team does a lot of traveling. The boys took a 700-mile round trip to Hoopa Valley in the Redwood Empire portion of the CIF North Coast Section last week, and while the ride north was a long one, they were doing a lot of celebrating on the journey home.

The hero was Aramboles after he rushed for 302 yards and four touchdowns in a 60-26 victory that gets the Eagles to 7-3 on the season. Calel also had seven tackles on defense.

So far this season, Aramboles has rushed for 1,531 yards and 27 TDs and he has 193 yards receiving with two more scores. On defense he has 49 tackles and not surprisingly has forced five fumbles. Head coach Warren Keller even let him return a kickoff once this season and he took it 82 yards to the house for a touchdown.

Last week’s rushing yardage also got Aramboles a spot on Most Rushing Yards (Career) in the Cal-Hi Sports Record Book after he went over the magic 5,000-yard mark and now has 5,165 yards as CSD enters the NCS Division 7 playoffs.

Calel will get a chance to add to his totals but it will be another long ride back to the Redwood Empire since this week the seventh-seeded Eagles will play at No. 2 seed Ferndale and that will be a 650-mile round trip.

On a final note, according to Heritage (Brentwood) Athletic Director and Prep2Prep football guru Nate Smith, Aramboles, who had recruiting interest from several schools including Cal, Cal Poly, Nevada, Sacramento State and San Jose State, can put a shot and spin a discus pretty well, and Smith gave us the numbers. Because of football he didn’t compete in the NCS Meet of Champions but his personal best from 2018 as a sophomore of 55-2.5 and 54-10 this past school year in the shot put would have been a top 12 finish at the CIF State Meet. His 164-7 personal best in the discus from last school year also would have been a top 10 finish at the State Meet.

Cal-Hi Sports Northern California
Defensive Player of the Week

Malik Jackson (Silver Creek, San Jose) Sr.

The 1968 song sung by Dionne Warwick asks “Do you know the way to San Jose?” Well, we do, and it’s a public school just southeast of downtown where we find our Northern California Defensive Player of the Week.

Last week, in a 16-8 upset victory over crosstown Blossom Valley League – Santa Teresa Division rival Branham that created a three-way tie with Branham and Overfelt for the league title, and in a game where defense was at a premium, Jackson came through big time.

He had 2.5 sacks, with the half sack coming when Jackson and teammate Keshawn Noriega brought down the Branham quarterback on the final play of the game. The 6-foot-1, 190-pound defensive end came up huge more than once in the fourth quarter. Early on, he stuffed two Branham running plays and then he recovered a fumble that set up a touchdown that gave Silver Creek a 16-0 lead.

“We just flew to the ball,” Jackson told Phil Jensen of the San Jose Mercury News.

The honor for Jackson is in some ways bittersweet since despite the win over Branham and a 7-3 finish he and his teammates will not get to fly to the ball any longer this season since unlike Branham and Overfelt the Raiders were left out of the CIF Central Coast Section playoffs. All that mumbo-jumbo in the CCS with computer rankings, playoff points and more and the bottom line is that a school that won a share of its league title doesn’t get in.

Malik and his talented teammates are helping to put Pacifica of Oxnard on the map for college recruiters. Photo: @TritonsFootball /

Cal-Hi Sports Southern California
Defensive Player of the Week

Malik Sherrod (Pacifica, Oxnard) Sr.

Ventura County is the destination for our Southern California Defensive Player of the Week and it is in Oxnard where we find another multi-purpose star and all-around talent we’re honoring for defense.

Last week, in the CIF Southern Section Division 6 playoffs, it was Sherrod that helped shred Mira Costa of Manhattan Beach in a 35-10 victory.

From his free safety position, the 5-foot-8, 176-pound Sherrod had two interceptions, one of which he ran back 82 yards to paydirt for a score. The other pick he returned 25 yards. Malik also had seven tackles, a batted pass and two quarterback hurries.

As a running back, the team’s leading rusher also led the team with 92 yards on nine carries and two touchdowns.

So far this season and heading into a second round game at home against Citrus Valley of Redlands, Sherrod has 38 tackles, four interceptions and a forced fumble. Malik has also rushed for 974 yards and 16 touchdowns and 166 yards another five TDs receiving.

Cal-Hi Sports Southern California
Offensive Player of the Week

Ryan Pettway (Wilson, Long Beach) Sr.

More often than not we try to stay away from routs, but when school records are involved, and especially ones that include career marks, we will sometimes make an exception, and for that reason Ryan gets the nod as the Southern California Offensive Player of the Week.

Long Beach Wilson has been around 93 years and the school with an enrollment of almost 3,800 students has had a tradition of mostly baseball and at one time girls volleyball, but in Pettway they have a quarterback that web site has called “by far the best quarterback in Long Beach this season.”

We warned you about the 54-0 shellacking of Fullerton by Wilson in the first round of the CIF Southern Section Division 7 playoffs, but for Pettway his pinpoint 12-for-13 passing for 313 yards and six touchdowns got him a school record for most TD passes in a game.

So far this season for a 10-1 Bruins team with a lone loss to Long Beach Poly that will face West Ranch of Valencia in the second round of the playoffs, Pettway has completed 115 of 177 passes for 2,433 yards and 36 TDs with only two interceptions. He’s also rushed for 269 yards and four more scores.

We said another career school record was involved as well and according to our friends at his 60 career touchdown passes while falling short of making the 86 TD passes currently required to make the Cal-Hi Sports Record Book is still a school record.

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

Gabe Panikowski (Torrey Pines, San Diego) Jr.

Our final stop this week is in sunny San Diego where we find our Southern California Special Teams Player of the Week in this prolific placekicker.

Once you hear what Gabe did with his foot, you’ll understand why we’re going to say the most recent performance of Panikowski was almost in the realm of Janikowski, as in former NFL kicking great Sebastian Janikowski.

Last week, in a CIF San Diego Section 34-6 Division I upset by No. 10 seed Torrey Pines over crosstown Rancho Bernardo, Panikowski pounded the pigskin through the uprights for field goal of 55 yards and 27 yards. The 5-foot-10, 167-pound junior was also 4 of 4 on points after touchdown.

The 55-yard boot is the longest reported field goal this year in the state and the third-longest in the history of the San Diego Section.

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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