Prep Preview: Paloma Valley at North

I’m covering the Menifee Paloma Valley-Riverside North varsity football game for The Press-Enterprise tonight. The best part of this assignment is the best part of any Week 0 assignment — it means getting back to football!

The Wildcats were a CIF-Southern Section Eastern Division semifinalist last season and returns some serious beef up front to bolster what will be a run-first offense — at least to start — for wily coach Bert Esposito. DeMarco Prewitt may be the best junior RB in the Inland area, and all indications are the Esposito intends to make him option 1-and-2 and even 3-and-4 this year.

The Huskies begin Year 2 of the John Rice era. They went 2-8 last season but there’s renewed hope for this season with Rancho Verde transfer Donjae Jones and Ricky Moreno giving the team with two solid quarterback options. Armstrong Mephors, who played varsity soccer for the North’s recent IVL-title team, has looked good at running back and defensive back and has attracted the attention of UCLA, among others.

Paloma Valley
— QB Jake Newton (Sr., 6-foot-2, 180 pounds); RB DeMarco Prewitt (Jr., 5-10, 185); RB Elliot Smith (Sr., 5-6, 150); WR/DB Ruben Colon (Sr., 5-8, 155); WR/DB Jacob Diaz (Sr., 5-11, 180); OL/DL Evan McGuire (Sr., 6-foot, 210); OL/DL Max Pichardo (Jr., 6-foot, 260).

J.W. North — QB Donjae Owens (Jr., 5-foot-11, 170 pounds); QB Ricky Moreno (Jr., 5-8, 165); RB/DB Armstrong Mephors (Sr., 6-1, 185); Maliek Roser (Jr., 5-10, 170); MLB Jerrod Bartley (Sr., 6-4, 220); WR/CB Daquan Jenkins (Sr., 5-8, 150); OL/DL David Salgado (Sr., 5-11, 260).

In a Week 0 scenario as such, North’s numerous athletes maybe give the Huskies the edge despite Paloma Valley’s use of an established scheme and an established running back that would usually win favor later in the season.
THE FINAL SCORE: North 32, Paloma Valley 28

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