Football Tour XIII North Salinas
Two years ago Steven Zenk made a bold move. He brought up 16 sophomores to fill out a roster while playing in one of the strongest leagues in the section.
"Someone asked me are you sure about this?'' Zenk said.
Now it's time to reap the benefits.
Instead of baby faced 15 year olds, the cast is made up of seniors now, having spent the last two off-seasons gearing up for this fall.
While there was improvement last fall, at times progress stalled. North Salinas gave up 40 or more points in seven games last year.
So Zenk fired the defensive coordinator -- himself.
The offense isn't short on firepower, led by three year starting quarterback Justyn Gutierrez, who improved his completion percentage last fall while throwing for over 1,300 yards.
Gutierrez has his favorite target back in David Dorr, who caught 55 passes. The pair scored well at a camp in Oregon over the summer.
It doesn't hurt that Gutierrez will be protected by Division I prospect Brandon Pena at right tackle.
If North Salinas wants to return to the postseason for the first time in five years, it has to improve its play on defense. You can't score 50 points and still fall by 15.
Having CCS discus finalist Mario Gonzalez back at linebacker helps. So too will the growth of six two-year starters.
Watch an interview with coach Steven Zenk.