31 Stockton area prep football players area headed to Bay Area Cali Classic. Who are they?
The best of the best in prep football from the Central Valley to the Bay Area will gather in San Leandro on Jan. 28 at 4 p.m. for the Bay Area Cali Classic. Fourteen schools from San Joaquin County will be representing the 209 as they battle it out in California’s largest prep football senior bowl game.
From the San Joaquin Athletic Association to the Mother Lode League, there is a range of talented players competing on the Valley team. The head coach of the Valley team is Kimball head coach Derek Graves. Graves led the Jaguars to a 7-5 overall record this season and a quarterfinals appearance in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV Playoffs.
"The Valley has some of the best talent in the nation and I'm looking forward to coaching all these young men in this game," Graves said. "Ms. Leslie, she's the one who runs the game and she sought me out after a great season at Kimball. I've enjoyed the experience of getting to know each and every one of the players and it's been a great experience."
Below is a list of the schools and players from the area who were selected to play in the senior bowl game as well of some of their accolades from the 2022-23 season.
(Schools are listed in alphabetical order)
Austin Hills (OL/DL)
Jaiden Crawford (OL/DL)
Ah’marion Ashley (DB): Edison is known for its smash-mouth defense and Ashley is a key player for the team at the defensive back position. He finished the season with 25 total tackles, an interception, and made the SJAA first-team all-league.
Eric “Primo” Rodriquez (K): Rodriquez is the only kicker from SJ County to make the Bay Area Cali Classic. The 5-foot 5 -inch senior made 32 field goals this season to finish with a total of 38 points from PATs. That earned him a spot on the SJAA first-team all-league.
Isaiah Peneueta Pomana (OL/DL)
Jacob Robinson (LB)
Samuel Vigil (OL)
Owen Nash (DB/WR)
Ryker Peters (RB): Peters is a powerful running back who was the lead rusher in Escalon’s 4-AA state championship finish. He punched in 31 touchdowns and finished with 2,208 rushing yards, the tenth most rushing yards in California. Peters will be a big threat in the backfield for the Valley team.
Jacob Rauch (OL/DL)
Avery Knox (OL/DL)
Zachary Macmartin (LB)
Jayden McKey (QB): McKey is one of two SJ County quarterbacks to be chosen for the senior bowl game. While at the head of Kimball’s offense, he threw for 26 touchdowns and 2,238 passing yards. He finished first in the VOL in passing yards and sixth in the SJS.
Sebastian Tate (RB/DB): Tate was the Jaguars' go-to in the backfield as he rushed for 1,126 total yards. In the first game of the season on Aug. 19, he rushed for nearly 200 yards and two touchdowns. He will look to have another standout performance in the bowl game as he rounds out the running back core for the Valley team.
Hector Meza (OL)
Damien Boozer (WR)
Kenyon Nelson (QB): Nelson is a four-year starter for the Trojans and was a force offensively as a dual-threat quarterback this season. He threw for 26 touchdowns and close to 2,000 passing yards. On the ground, he rushed for a total of six touchdowns and 693 rushing yards.
Jacob Lanticse (DE/FB): Lanticse, who is the only Linden player on the roster, will be a huge threat to the Bay Area team as he was a big weapon for the Lions this season. He finished with 24 total tackles and two sacks which got him on the SJAA first-team all-league. Lanticse can also be utilized on offense as a fullback and kickoff returner.
Jesus Aguilar (LB)
Jeremiah Nash (WR): This season Nash was a huge offensive weapon for McNair as he caught for over 1,000 yards at the receiver position. The 6-foot 2-inch senior ended the season ranked in the top 15 of the California Interscholastic Federation in receiving yards. Nash will round out the Valley team’s lethal wide receiver core.
Jayden Smith (OL)
Greg Tatmon (DE/WR)
Orlando Syph-Timmons (ATH): Syph-Timmons will be the lone Mountain House player representing the Valley team. He was the Mustangs' captain this season and was their top defender. He averaged 8.7 tackles per game to finish with 87 total tackles. Offensively, he rushed for six touchdowns and had nine total touchdowns.
John Dillon (OL/DL): Standing at 6 foot 6 inches and 230 pounds, Dillon was a big body on defense for Tokay. Although the Tigers had a rough season, he was a bright spot for them as he averaged three tackles per game to finish with 26 total tackles. He is the only Tokay player on the Valley team roster.
Kurtis Maynor (WR/DB): At the receiver slot, Maynor averaged the most receiving yards per game for Tracy, 51.9 yards. In kickoff returns, he was ranked No. 1 in the Tri-City Athletic League in average yards per return with 29 yards. He will add some speed to the Valley team and height standing at 6 foot 3 inches.
Aidan Monarrez (OL/DL)
Jeremiah Zamora (Safety): At the safety position, Zamora will be an essential pass defender for the Valley team as he was for Tracy this year. Standing at 6 feet, the senior snagged five interceptions, the third most interceptions in SJS Division II. He also averaged about four tackles per game for the Bulldogs.
J’Vaughn Nibbs (WR): While West only won one game this season, Nibbs shined as their offensive leader. He was ranked ninth in the SJS in receiving yards with 904 yards. He caught for five touchdowns and averaged 90.4 yards per game. Nibbs is one of two West players to represent the Wolfpack this weekend.
Roberto Vargas (LB/RB)
Christopher Buttram (WR/SS): Buttram led Weston Ranch in receiving yards per game with 56.6 yards. The 5-foot 11-inch two-way player finished with seven receiving touchdowns and 33 total tackles. According to coaches from the Valley team, he’s one of their hardest hitters on defense.
Namir Brown-Sanger (LB)
Record reporter Shannon Belt covers sports. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @ShannonBelt3. Support local news, subscribe to The Stockton Record.
This article originally appeared on The Record: San Joaquin County prep football players head to Bay Area Senior Bowl