Season Preview: Southwestern League


(2018 records in parenthesis)

There’s a lot going on in the Southwestern League this season but don’t let any of it fool you. Vista Murrieta remains the class of this group, but there are several teams making a play for playoff spots this season. Murrieta Valley probably isn’t one of the them, but Murrieta Mesa Temecula Valley and Temecula Chaparral will battle each other tooth-and-nail for postseason berths. Temecula Great Oak’s rebuilding process enters Year 2.

VISTA MURRIETA (8-3 overall, 5-0 Southwestern) seems ready to let senior dual-threat QB Robert Coleman (6-foot, 200 pounds) take over an offense that has lacked star power in recent seasons. DT/DE Peni Masiva (6-2, 245) is practically unstoppable.

MURRIETA VALLEY (6-5, 4-1) is hungover after four years of watching Hank Backmeier every Friday night, and it’s hard to blame the Nighthawks if they need a season or two to re-calibrate.

MURRIETA MESA (5-6, 2-3) has the look of a team about to take a step forward in 2019 and entertain the idea of a lengthy playoff run with its talented personnel groupings.

TEMECULA VALLEY (6-6, 2-3) can make some noise with Coach Bert Esposito’s scrappy style, but needs big years from its big man to achieve more than an occasional quarterfinal.

TEMECULA CHAPARRAL (7-4, 2-3) are transitioning from last season’s senior-heavy offense and will lean on first-time starting QB Eli Bertran.

TEMECULA GREAT OAK (1-9, 0-5) is facing a big year for Coach Robbie Robinson after winning just one game last season.

Vista Murrieta
Temecula Valley
Murrieta Mesa
Murrieta Valley
Great Oak

QB Jose Ayala IV, Jr., Murrieta Mesa
QB Eli Bertran, Sr., Chaparral
WR Taliq Brown, Sr., Murrieta Valley
QB Robert Coleman, Sr., Vista Murrieta
QB Zach Cutka, Sr., Temecula Valley
DE/TE Jay Max Jacobsen, Sr., Temecula Valley
RB/DB Antonio January, Sr., Murrieta Mesa
DT/DE Peni Masiva, Sr., Vista Murrieta
RB James Mullen II, Sr., Great Oak
MLB Tristen Ramires, Jr., Chaparral

Aug. 23-San Jacinto at Great Oak, 7pm
Sept. 13-Vista Murrieta at Norco, 7pm
Oct. 11-Vista Murrieta at Chaparral, 7pm
Oct. 25-Chaparral at Temecula Valley, 7pm
Oct. 25-Murrieta Valley at Murrieta Mesa, 7pm

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