Home-and-home series begins Saturday in Garcia-Elder Sports
GILROY — The first meeting of a home-and-home series between Gavilan and San Jose City College kicks off Saturday at 7 p.m. at Garcia-Elder Sports Complex in Gilroy.
The Coast Conference football foes will play a conference game on the Jaguars’ field on Oct. 24. This weekend’s game was the result of College of Marin dropping its football program this summer, leaving both Gavilan and San Jose City looking for a 10th game.
“I would have preferred to play another opponent,” San Jose City head coach Carlton Connor said. “I would like to have the kids play a full 10-game season. The tough part is that while I don’t want to lose any game, I would rather drop the one that doesn’t count (in conference play).”
Gavilan head coach John Lango, still seeking a first win this year after losses to American River and Cabrillo, feels the Rams are building steadily toward conference play.
“We’ve improved each game,” Lango said. “We’re still behind our opponents because this will be our third game and San Jose has had three already. We will need to control the tempo against San Jose, try to hit on all cylinders — offense, defense and special teams.
“San Jose’s defensive line is very physical. We’re big up front, so one of the keys Saturday will be which team wins the battle in the trenches.”
San Jose City (2-1) will send out freshman Jake Cuellar, a Milpitas High product, to quarterback the Jaguars and their pro-style offense. The team’s primary running threat is Kendricus Reed, while wideout Chris Albright (also from Milpitas) anchors the pass-receiving portion of the SJCC attack.
Connor tabbed defensive linemen Herb Lee and Lamar DeRego as exceptional players on the Jaguars’ front line.
“We’re similar teams,” Connor said of the Saturday pairing. “John’s teams are always well-prepared and very physical. This game will be a real challenge for us.”
Gavilan completes the pre-conference schedule with games at Contra Costa College on Oct. 3 and home to Sacramento City College on Oct. 10.