GBHS football ready to ‘stand tall’ against De La Salle High School

GBHS+football+ready+to+%27stand+tall%27+against+De+La+Salle+High+School

  Granite Bay football will be facing a new challenge this year – playing one of the top ranked teams in the nation.

  On October 2 De La Salle will be traveling to Granite Bay for GBHS’s fifth game of the season.

  With over 400 wins, 6 state championships, and 20 undefeated seasons in the school’s history, the Spartans have a pedigree of success.

  De La Salle was ranked number one in the country at the beginning of August. A loss against a Texas team on August 29th dropped the team in ranking.

  GBHS started off the season with a strong win against the Jesuit Marauders. The Grizzlies dominated with a 21-0 lead until Jesuit scored seven points with a few minutes left in the game.

  This season is the first year of GBHS head coach Jeff Evans, who has replaced retired coach Ernie Cooper.

  “It is such an honor to be leading this program,” Evans said. “The name Granite Bay carries with it a level of prestige and respect throughout the entire state due to all of the wonderful programs and the success the school has had across the board, not just football.”

  “Even though we lost Coach Cooper to retirement and a lot of key senior players last year I think we’ll have a successful team this year.” GBHS senior Sean Vajanaphanich said.

  The football program is also introducing several other new assistant coaches that aren’t teachers or staff at GBHS.

 “A lot of guys are stepping up and we’ve all bought into the coaching staff,” Vajanaphanich said.

 “I think we’ll surprise a lot of people this year.”

  “This year we are a very tight and connected group and we trust one another.” GBHS senior Ryan MacIntosh said.

  Both Vajanaphanich and MacIntosh are captains on the football team.

  The sport of football naturally brings with it risk of injury throughout the long season.

  “The majority of our players do not play offense and defense,” Evans said.

 “[Playing] one side of the ball has been advantageous to us over the years because our guys are less worn down at the end of the season.”

  However GBHS football received a setback on September 4th when starting quarterback Brad Fina broke his collarbone against Cosumnes Oaks.

  Getting the support of Granite Bay fans will ultimately be essential for success against De La Salle.

  “Let’s get all of the Granite Bay community together as one and see if we [can] just prove some people wrong,” Evans said.

 Vajanaphanich sees the presence of the community as part of the team’s defensive strategy.

 “When the Tribe’s out there it’s harder for the opposing offense to execute their plays because of the noise,” Vajanaphanich said.

 “The Tribe definitely motivates us to play harder because there’s no better feeling than making a play and having the tribe go off right after.”

  “A big audience gets me and the rest of the team pumped up,” MacIntosh said.

 “Hearing everyone cheer is an amazing feeling the makes me play even harder.”

  The time GBHS football players have been putting in is paying off.

 “We have great kids that are working very hard to give you all a product to be proud of,” Evans said.

 “As a whole, we are greater than the sum of our parts.”

  GBHS has a history of not succumbing to higher ranked teams as well.

  In 2012, the Grizzlies pulled out a 21-20 win over heavily favored Long Beach Poly to win the Division 1 State Championship.

  However, De La Salle will not be the only challenging game this year. GBHS football will be matching up against Vacaville, Oak Ridge, and Folsom, among other challenging football teams.

  “Right now I’m just taking things one week at a time,” Vajanaphanich said.

 “Our mindset as a team is to go 1-0 every single week and take every game seriously no matter who the opponent is.”

   GBHS will play De La Salle High School tomorrow at home at 7:30 p.m. 

   “I am confident that if we continue to work hard and stay as (a) unit for the entire season, we can achieve our goals,” MacIntosh said.

 “It is truly an honor to play Grizzly football.”

Print Friendly, PDF & Email