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OCVarsity Kickoff '16: Katella preview
OCVarsity’s season preview for 2016:
Coach: Fred DiPalma
Last season: 11-1 overall, 5-0 league
Scouting report: Opposing defenses should prepare for a long night when they face the Knights, whose offense has the talent to shortcircuit a scoreboard. They return one of the county’s best running back-receiver duos in Francisco Pineda and James Faitasia. Pineda was the Orange League MVP last season, and Faitasia was the league’s offensive player of the year. Last season, Pineda finished 10th in the county in rushing (1,305 yards, 19 touchdowns on 188 carries). He could have some big holes to run through this year, too, as he works behind all-league guard Guillermo Bugarian. Faitasia finished 11th in the county in receiving yards last year, with 912 yards on 44 catches. An inexperienced defensive line is the only weakness DiPalma sees in the Knights.
Bottom line: A high-powered offense should help the Knights overcome a few shortcomings on defense, keeping them well within reach of a third consecutive league title.
Players to watch: Guillermo Bugarian, OL, Sr.; Ricardo Cardenas, DT, Sr.; Enrique Delgado, CB, Sr.; James Faitasia, WR, Sr.; Francisco Pineda, RB, Sr.; Christian Sanchez, LB, Sr.; Axel Sanchez, LB, Sr.
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