SoCal/NorCal Players of the Week

Both of our SoCal/NorCal offensive players of the week — Brian Salazar of Monrovia & Quinn Boyd from Granada of Livermore — passed for more than 400 yards. Photos: Monrovia Football / MaxPreps & @trivalleytv /

It’s by just two yards of passing, but this week one of our honorees has gained a spot in our all-time state records. Another factor of this feature along with possible record book entries is to uncover hidden talent that more often than not only gets local attention. There’s more than one honoree that fits that description. In Southern California, we visit Monrovia, Mission Viejo and Bellflower, while the Northern California stops are in Livermore, Stockton and Folsom.

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Notes: We will continue to have flexibility to one of the honorees by calling it Multi-Purpose/Special Teams. Multi-Purpose is already a category for All State honors. For these honors, we also consider CIF Central Section players for Northern California. To nominate anyone, email

Cal-Hi Sports Southern California
Offensive Player of the Week

Brian Salazar (Monrovia) Jr.

The San Gabriel Valley east of Pasadena and close to the foothills of Mt. Wilson is our destination in search of the Southern California Offensive Player of the Week and we land in Monrovia to honor a junior signal-caller who has garnered previous consideration for the award, but this is the week Salazar is the winner.

Last week, in 42-29 non-league win at nearby San Dimas that got the Wildcats to 2-2 on the season, the 6-foot-2, 175-pound Salazar completed 19-of-28 passes for 471 yards and three TDs, plus he added 18 yards rushing on two carries for 489 yards of total offense.

The 471 yards just makes the Cal-Hi Sports Online Record Book where the cutoff is 470 yards to make the Most Yards (Game) in the passing section. Since there are no QBs on that list from Monrovia, we’ll go out on a limb and say that Brian’s 471 is a new school record.

Earlier this season, Salazar passed for 389 yards and five TDs in a 43-13 win over visiting El Rancho of Pico Rivera. So far in four games, Salazar is the Czar of passers with only four games as his 1,433 yards passing (14 TDs) is the No. 15 mark in the state but all 14 quarterbacks ahead of him have played five or even six games.

We’re sure Brian would like to give a shoutout to his receivers that hauled in the load. Junior Joshua Griffiths had two of the TD catches and 135 yards receiving, and while senior Noah Ellison only caught one TD pass, and although he’s a ways off from making the record book, he surpassed the 200-yard receiving mark with 206 yards.

Tackling machine Jackson Sievers of Capistrano Valley has committed to UC Davis. Photo:

Cal-Hi Sports Southern California
Defensive Player of the Week

Jackson Sievers (Capistrano Valley, Mission Viejo) Sr.

We head to Southern Orange County just east of and fairly close to where I-5 and the 73 toll road merge to find our Southern California Defensive Player of the Week, and we land in Mission Viejo at Capistrano Valley to locate our honoree who is known as a tackling machine.

Sievers may be from Southern Orange County, but the feat for which he is being honored, came on a 250-mile round trip to Barstow where the visiting Cougars got to 6-0 with a 23-12 road win

We tried hard to get an exact number of tackles Sievers had, but he most certainly was a factor in a game Capistrano Valley trailed 12-10 before the defense, with Jackson as the linchpin, pitched a second half shutout.

Exact numbers were not available and had not been reported on MaxPreps, but Capistrano Valley head coach Sean Curtis did tell the Orange County Register that he had 20 or more tackles in the contest.

Coach’s word is good enough for us since not only will at least 20 tackles make him the No. 2 reported tackler in the state and No. 1 in the CIF Southern Section with 87 tackles, the 247Sports three-star recruit and 6-foot-2, 200-pound senior who recently committed to UC Davis, also recently broke the school record for tackles that was posted on the Capo Valley Football X/Twitter handle when he made tackle No. 292 in a 38-14 victory on September 1 over Huntington Beach.

If the 20 tackles are added into his career total, Sievers now has 343 tackles in his four-year varsity career based on that social media post.

In that respect that makes this honor a season and career achievement award.

On a side note, not only does Sievers put up big numbers on the gridiron, he carries a 4.2 GPA in the classroom.

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

Marvin Williams (Bellflower) Sr.

To find the Southern California Multi Purpose/Special Teams Player of the Week, the journey takes us to Bellflower, but not to mighty St. John Bosco. Instead we land a little less than a mile south at Bellflower High to find our honoree.

This week’s winner fits the bill of multi-purpose which the category was expanded last year beyond special teams to make more players eligible to be honored.

Williams is basically a running quarterback in the Buccaneers’ run oriented offense, but not only did he run for a ton of yards in his most recent performance, he passed and was on the receiving end of a pass as well, plus more.

Last week, in a 44-29 victory on the road at Whittier, the 6-foot-1, 160-pound senior rushed for 250 yards and four TDs. Williams only threw one pass but it went for a 25-yard TD, and he caught two passes for 51 yards receiving with a 28-yard TD reception, plus he caught a 2-point conversion. Marvin also made one tackle from his defensive back position, and last but not least he returned two kickoffs.

So far this season, Williams now has three 200-yard rushing performances and totaled 979 yards and 12 TDs in six games, including a game in which he was pulled after one carry for a 38-yard TD in an 84-0 rout of Compton Centennial.

Cal-Hi Sports Northern California
Offensive Player of the Week

Quinn Boyd (Granada. Livermore) Sr.

The Tri-Valley area of the East Bay portion of the CIF North Coast Section and the city of Livermore is our destination, and it’s at Granada where we find our Northern California Offensive Player of the Week. It’s the Matadors’ quarterback who’s being honored, not only for his most recent performance, but for what he’s done the last four weeks for 4-1 Granada.

Last week, in a 56-20 rout of San Leandro, the 6-foot-4, 195-pound senior passed for 446 yards on a pinpoint 22-of-26 with seven touchdowns. The seven TDs falls one short of making the Cal-Hi Sports Online Record Book on the Most Touchdown Passes (Game) list, but it is believed to be a school record.

Granada was soundly beaten in its first game by East Bay power Monte Vista of Danville, but since then Boyd has passed for 1,217 yards and 16 TDs in four straight wins and for the season he now has passed for 1,358 yards and the 16 TDs. The 1,358 yards is a top 30 reported mark in the state and No. 3 in the North Coast Section.

It wouldn’t be fair to not mention Quinn’s younger brother, junior Mikey Boyd. The 5-foot-11, 170-pound junior is one of the team’s leading wide receivers and had a TD reception against San Leandro.

Harvard-bound Omari Gayles is one of those DBs who collects both tackles and interceptions. Photo: Mark Tennis.

Cal-Hi Sports Northern California
Defensive Player of the Week

Omari Gayles (St. Mary’s, Stockton) Sr.

We head to the CIF Sac-Joaquin Section and to a city that is been home to Cal-Hi Sports for more than 30 years to find our Northern California Defensive Player of the Week, and we land in Stockton at St. Mary’s where we honor a Harvard-bound senior defensive back who came up huge in a big road game in his most recent performance.

Every week we get a lot of nominations from coaches, parents and others, and while some get written up in our State Stat Stars feature, this nomination that came in caught our eye.

The Rams took a long road trip to Southern California for a game against a Bishop Amat of La Puente team that might only be 1-4 after a 41-31 loss to St. Mary’s, but two of its four previous losses are to teams ranked in the most recent Cal-Hi Sports top 25, Rancho Cucamonga and Santa Margarita Catholic (Rancho Santa Margarita), and a third loss is to a Valencia team in the bottom 25 of the state rankings.

Now, state No. 24 St. Mary’s is added to the list and Gayles had a monster game in the victory that gets the Rams to 4-1 with a lone loss two weeks ago to De La Salle.

The 5-foot-10, 165-pound Gayles had 13 tackles (nine solo) with one for loss, two interceptions and a pass deflected.

Despite being a defensive back, Gayles leads the team with 53 tackles and his 36 solo tackles are more than the overall tackles of the next nearest Rams’ tackler. He also has two interceptions and that’s tied for team high, plus two blocked punts and a blocked field goal, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery.

Last season, Gayles led St. Mary’s with 96 tackles including 72 solo. Plus, he led the Rams with three interceptions, five fumble recoveries, two blocked field goals and two blocked punts.

To say Gayles has a nose for the football on defense is a bit of an understatement.

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

Matt Long (Vista del Lago, Folsom) Sr.

We head around 30-miles east of the state capitol on Highway 50 to find our Northern California Multi-Purpose/Special Teams Player of the Week, and we land in Folsom, but not to reward a member of the state-ranked Folsom Bulldogs, but from cross-town Vista del Lago where we honor an Air Force-committed Eagles’ senior.

There’s a good chance Long will have as good if not better games as the season goes on for 5-1 Vista del Lago, but this is the week he gets the nod after his most recent performance.

Last week, in a 63-0 shellacking of Sacramento Capital Christian, the 6-foot, 200-pound linebacker and wide receiver, had an interception in his fifth straight game, plus he had eight pass receptions for 86 yards and two touchdowns.

So far this season, Long has 28 pass receptions for 463 yards and seven TDs, plus two TDs rushing.

Besides the five picks on defense this season, Long has 21 tackles with five for losses, including a sack. The five interceptions is tied for the No. 5 reported mark in the state and tied for tops in the CIF Sac-Joaquin 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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