2010 football preview

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In Fine Formation Dolphins looking to build experience and knowledge one game at a time on the gridiron this fall TEAM ROSTER • GAME SCHEDULE & PREVIEWS DEPTH CHARTS • PLAYERS TO WATCH ALSO INSIDE: Photo by Gibby/Zone57.com

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Dana Hills High School Football Preview


Page 1: 2010 Football Preview

In Fine FormationDolphins looking to build experience and knowledge

one game at a time on the gridiron this fall



Photo by Gibby/Zone57.com

Page 2: 2010 Football Preview
Page 3: 2010 Football Preview

wo years ago, head coach Brent Melbon was handed the reins to a team that, the year before went 1-8 in 2007. Now after

implementing his tactics and shifting the team’s mindset to focus on his style of play, he has turned Dana Hills into a top contender in the tough South Coast League.

2009 was somewhat bittersweet for the Dolphins. They made a big statement and dominated the South Coast league, going 4-1 in league play. The Dolphins’ effectiveness within league is just the sort of thing that Melbon and his staff have come to expect from their teams. But on the other hand, they came within one win of a league title in the last game of the regular season against Mission Viejo and were eventu-ally ousted from the playoffs by Edison. The Dolphins had a great season considering where they came from the year before but after getting that close only to fall short is a tough blow.

Now, after a year in which they had seven returning starters, the 2010 version of Melbon’s Dolphins fi nd themselves with only four- and three of them will be playing both sides of the ball.

Almost all of the offensive line is gone but will be anchored by two solid seniors. The defensive line is plagued with injuries and the linebacker core will have three players who are brand new to the position. Needless to say, Melbon’s goal for the off-season has been an attempt to build experience and knowledge.

But at the Dolphins’ core, there is a solid group of playmakers who have the ability to take over games. Their skill positions will be stacked and even though some players are at new posi-tions, they are seniors who have been around the game long enough to know that anything can happen out on the gridiron come Friday night.

TRIPLE THREATThe Dolphins have something that most

teams in high school football do not: A triple threat of top talent at three important skill positions—on both sides of the ball. Melbon describes the senior trio consisting of quarter-back/strong safety Trent Mason, wide receiver/defensive back Chris Kearney and new transfer running back/cornerback Tyler Shirozono as: “Three home run hitters…those three alone are going to cause defenses a lot of problems”.

Entering his senior year and poised to have his biggest season yet, veteran Chris Kearney is an opposing teams’ worst nightmare. With almost Swiss army knife-like versatility, Kearney can play both sides of the ball at a very high level.

“I think he’s one of the three best players in the county personally,” Melbon said, “He does everything and he’s even improved a lot [over the off-season].”

In 2010, Kearney will be a part of the Dolphins’ game plan on almost every down. On his list of positions that already includes receiver, defensive back, punter, punt returner and kick returner, Kearney will also see more snaps at the tailback position in 2010.

Mason has emerged as one of the teams’ leaders on the fi eld. With a big frame and explosive quickness, he is a rare type of quarterback.

“He’s the strongest quarterback we’ve had,

when I look at my records,” Melbon said. You don’t usually see a quarterback play-

ing both sides of the fi eld, but Mason’s skills are anything but usual. He is a second team all league strong safety and helps shut down opposing teams as well as run the score up against them. Mason rushed for 257 yards last year and should add another running option out of the quarterback spot for the Dolphins this year.

A newcomer to Dana Hills, transfer Tyler Shirozono gives the Dolphins explosive talent in the backfi eld. The running back started last year at his old school, JSerra, and comes in highly touted.

“He’s got great balance, he’s real shifty, he’s got great vision and he’s got break-away speed,” Melbon said.

STEPPING UP A key concern for Melbon and his staff

this off-season was the depth of their of-fensive/defensive lines and the gaping hole at the linebacker positions. With the loss of graduating seniors and an injury to senior defensive end, Taylor Perdue, the Dolphins are stretched thin. Melbon has had to insert juniors into these positions and will have to wait and see if they can produce like veterans.

Seniors Cody Meddaugh and Taylor McReynolds should solidify things up front on defense and junior Matt Romano has had a great summer settling into Purdue’s former defensive end position according to Melbon.

But the middle is where the head coach is most concerned.

Fortunately, senior Tanner Denso has shown over the off-season that he will do what it takes for his team to succeed. The

senior is moving from his normal defensive back position to go and play strong side linebacker. Joining Denso at the linebacker positions will be juniors Will McKinley, who will play up the middle, and Colton Freedman, who will play the weak side.

The offensive line is also a spot where inex-perience could hurt the Dolphins. The starting roster currently consists of three junior offen-sive linemen responsible for creating holes and blocking for the Dolphins’ talented backfi eld. Just like on defense, Meddaugh and McReyn-olds will be the only two on the line who have much experience. Melbon stressed how the current offensive line is just as strong as last years, but what makes them different is the experience level. Juniors Forrest Anderson (LG), Wade Kraus (RG) and Garret Guidotti (RT) will make up the rest of the Dolphins line.

This infl ux of young talent is something that Melbon seems to think the teams’ success will hinge on.

“Football always comes down to what you do up front and the linemen are the key and we’re young up front, they have to get good quick, they have to grow up,” Melbon said. “Hopefully with the experience, they get the knowledge and improve; if they do then we can be pretty good, if they don’t…you know the playmakers can only do so much.”

SOUTH COAST GAUNTLETThe South Coast League is one of the more

competitive leagues in Southern California high school football. The powerhouse that is Mission Viejo coupled with emerging programs like Tesoro and Trabuco Hills makes for a daunting schedule.

Not only is the Dolphins’ league schedule tough, they will be playing against an Edison High team that is ranked No. 20 in the nation according to Maxpreps.com.

Melbon, however, seems to be focusing his teams’ attention at the task at hand and will worry about league play when the time comes.

“The fi rst game [against Santiago] is impor-tant just because we’re young. If we can get a win, that would really help the confi dence and development of the kids,” Melbon said.

Even down to his game preparation, Melbon is sticking to his off-season mentality of building experience and knowledge one game at a time.

“There are no easy games on the schedule. It’s going to be a mighty tough task,” Melbon said, “If we stay healthy and mature quick, we’ll be in every game. We’ll play tough and the kids will play hard.” DP


Sept. 3 Corona Santiago Dana Hills 7 p.m.

Sept. 10 Aliso Niguel Aliso Niguel 7 p.m.

Sept. 16 Edison Edison 7 p.m.

Sept. 24 Mission Hills Dana Hills 7 p.m.

Oct. 1 El Toro El Toro 7 p.m.

Oct. 8 Capistrano Valley Dana Hills 7 p.m.

Oct. 15 Mission Viejo Mission Viejo 7 p.m.

Oct. 22 San Clemente Dana Hills 7 p.m.

Oct. 29 Tesoro Dana Hills 7 p.m.

Nov. 5 Trabuco Hills Trabuco Hills 7 p.m.



’09 Record: 9-3 (4-1 in South Coast League)Playoffs: Loss to Edison in second round 46-16Returning Starters: Offense: 3; Defense: 3Offensive set: SpreadDefensive: 4-3, 4-4 and new Okie 50-50Head Coach: Brent MelbonCoaching Staff: John Donnelly (Asst. Head Coach, Def. Coordinator); Phil Skinner (Off. Line coach); Mike Molinaro (Run-ning backs/Defensive backs coach); Tim Kuzunic (Wide Receivers coach); Bill Ma-zurek (Defensive ends coach); Les Owens (Defensive tackles coach)

Dolphins in a NutshellIn Fine FormationDolphins looking to build experience and knowledge one game at a time on the gridiron this fall


Okie Dokie In an attempt to switch up their defensive looks, the Dolphins will employ a scheme that Melbon describes as “old school.” It is called the 50-Okie. Normally the Dolphins defense has four linemen up front, but in the Okie there will be fi ve. The extra lineman allows the Dolphins’ noseguard to line up with the opposing teams’ center. Look for it in short yardage scenarios when Dana is trying to stop the run.


Trent Mason and Chris Kearney at summer practice. Photo by Gibby/Zone57.com

Page 4: 2010 Football Preview


#44 Tanner Denso


#32 Will McKinley #57 Devon Vise

Strong Safety

#5 Trent Mason#47 Mitch Marowitz

Outside Linebacker

#26 Colton Freedman#33 Jimmy Dean


#60 Blair Darr, #57 Devon Vise


#11 Matt Romano #9 Taylor Perue


#78 Cody Meddaugh #75 Garret Guidotti


#2 Eddie Flynn#20 Keith Montross



#55 Taylor McReynolds, #79 Gage Gross

Free Safety

#4 Andrew Jitratanajinda #3 Chris Kearney

Wide Receiver

#2 Eddie Flynn #15 Hunter Briggs


#78 Cody Meddaugh#77 Tyler Wileman


#56 Wade Kraus


#3 Chris Kearney #10 Logan Warren


#55 Taylor McReynolds#70 Brennan


Wide Receiver

#8 Mathias Bedolfe

#11 Matt Romano

Running Back

#21 Tyler Shirozono #32 Will McKinley


#5 Trent Mason#16 Shane Scambray




#1 Danny McAndrews #4 Andrew


Cody Meddaugh (6-3, 270): As a second team all league defensive player in 2009, Meddaugh solidifi ed his spot on this year’s squad. Last year he amassed 64 tackles to go along with 6.5 sacks. This year, Melbon will have Meddaugh start-

ing at both the LT and DT positions, which shows how unique a player he is. As a member of the 1,100 pound club and a great student of the game, Meddaugh is a force to be reckoned with, no matter what side of the ball he is on.

Eddie Flynn (5-11, 170): This year Flynn will be one of the many Dolphins who will start at

both sides of the ball. Flynn’s speed and agility should be a good fi t at the cornerback position, where Melbon thinks he will play very well.

Tanner Denso (5-10, 205): The se-nior will be playing in a whole new position this year in an attempt by Melbon and his staff to strengthen an inexperienced linebacker core. Last year at the safety position, Denso had 29 tackles. This year,

he will have to adjust and help bring veteran leadership to a position that Melbon sees as a big question mark on his depth charts.


Trent Mason (6-3, 205): Playing as a back up last year behind Josh Dean, 2010 will be

Mason’s year to make his mark. The senior, who Melbon says is the strongest player at the position in recent history, has the ability to make explosive plays on both sides of the ball.

Chris Kearney (6-0, 185): About as athletic and versa-tile as they come. Kearney

played a huge part in the Dolphins’ success last year where he played multiple positions. In 2010, Kearney will continue to be the go-to guy for coach Melbon’s playmaking needs.

Tyler Shirozono (5-8, 175): A new-comer to the South Coast league, the JSerra

transfer completes a triple threat at the skill positions for the Dol-phins. Coach Melbon describes Shirozono’s vision and ability to cut up-fi eld quickly as the keys to his success.

Brenden Beckley (6-1, 170): As the kicker for the Dolphins last year, Beckley racked up

a team high 85 points and averaged just over seven points a game. Look for Beckley step-ping up to make a clutch fi eld goal when a game is on the line in 2010.

Taylor McReynolds (6-3, 225): The center position is often one of the most

overlooked in football, but McReynolds plays the position as well as you could ask for. The line will need his experi-ence and leadership if they are to form a solid unit.





1 Danny McAndrews DB, WR 5-9/165 12

2 Eddie Flynn DB, WR 5-11/170 12

3 Chris Kearney DB, WR 6-0/185 12

4 Andrew Jitratanajinda DB, WR 5-11/175 11

5 Trent Mason DB, QB 6-3/205 12

6 Conner Kelly LB, RB 5-10/185 12

8 Mathias Bedolfe DB, WR 6-0/180 12

9 Taylor Perue DE, OL 6-2/200 12

10 Logan Warren DB, WR 5-9/150 10

11 Matt Romano DE, WR 6-3/205 11

12 Ryan Nicholson DE, OL 5-11/205 11

15 Hunter Briggs DB, WR 6-2/180 11

16 Shane Scambray DB, QB 6-3/180 11

20 Keith Montross DB, WR 6-1/160 12

21 Tyler Shirozono DB, RB 5-8/175 12

25 Dylan Bernier DB, WR 6-0/170 12

26 Colton Freedman DB, WR 5-11/185 11

28 Brenden Beckley K, WR 6-1/170 12

29 Joe Klingensmith DB, WR 5-9/170 12

31 Jonny Ontivero LB, RB 5-10/160 11

32 Will McKinley LB, RB 6-0/200 11

33 Jimmy Dean LB, RB 5-10/175 11

35 Colin Kennedy DB, WR 5-9/170 11

41 Luis Prior LB, RB 5-9/190 11

44 Tanner Denso LB, RB 5-10/205 12

47 Mitch Marowitz DB, WR 5-9/160 11

50 Mike Brown DL, OL 6-0/240 11

51 Forrest Anderson DT, OL 6-0/260 11

53 Joey Vasco DL, OL 6-0/235 11

54 Michael Pearson DT, OL 5-11/210 12

55 Taylor McReynolds DT, OL 6-3/225 12

56 Wade Kraus DT, OL 6-0/230 11

57 Devin Vise LB, OL 6-5/185 10

58 Edgar Avelino DT, OL 5-6/185 12

60 Blair Darr DE, OL 6-1/215 12

64 Stephan Hudgins DT, OL 5-8/195 12

65 Brandon Strickland DL, OL 6-1/215 12

66 Brett Wilshire DT, OL 6-1/260 11

70 Brennan Calley DL, OL 5-10/205 11

72 Mason Cummings DE, OL 6-1/210 10

75 Garret Guidotti DT, OL 6-3/235 11

76 Daniel Hoffman DT, OL 6-3/270 11

77 Tyler Wileman DE, OL 6-5/240 11

78 Cody Meddaugh DT, OL 6-3/270 12

79 Gage Gross DT, OL 5-11/235 12


#75 Garret Guidotti


#51 Forrest Anderson#60 Blair



#8 Mathias Bedolfe #21 Tyler Shirozono

Page 5: 2010 Football Preview
Page 6: 2010 Football Preview



Location: Aliso NiguelTime: 7 p.m.

ABOUT THE WOLVERINES2009 Record: 2-8 (0-5 league)09 vs. DH: Loss 50-0Affi liation: Sea ViewCoach: Jeff Veeder

2010 Team Overview: They key to the Wolverines’ success in 2010 will be their defense. Last year they allowed an average of 35.4 points scored against them. That’s a number that needs to come down if they are to have their fi rst winning season since 2006.

The Wolverines’ rushing game was somewhat anemic last year as well. With seven different players getting 10 or more touches over the course of the year, Aliso only ran for a total of 708 yards as a team.

The task of maintaining the Wol-verines active passing game looks to be senior Andrew Ossola’s (5-11, 155) responsibility. Last year, with limited snaps, Ossola completed 50 percent of his 19 passes and threw for 124 yards.


Location: El ToroTime: 7 p.m.

ABOUT THE CHARGERS2009 record: 8-4 (4-1 league)2009 vs. DH: Loss 34-13Affi liation: Sea ViewCoach: Robert Frith

2010 Team Overview: The Chargers will be playing this year with a chip on their shoulder. A solid 2009 proved that they can play in the tough Sea View League, but with only 10 players returning from last year’s squad, they will have to prove that ‘09 was no fl uke. The good news for El Toro is that of the 10 returning players , several of them were key parts of their 2009 run.

Holding down the offensive line will be tackle Jack Alvarez (6-4, 280). If Alvarez can unite the of-fensive line, it will make room for senior running back Nico Jackson to do some damage. Jackson led the team in rushing with 77.2 yds/game last season.


Location: Dana HillsTime: 7 p.m.

ABOUT THE COUGARS2009 record: 4-6 (1-4 league)09 vs. DH: Loss 34-17Affi liation: Sea ViewCoach: Matt Poston

2010 Team Overview: The Cou-gars appear to have a tough season ahead with only seven players (four on offense, three on defense) returning. They will have to play with a new QB with top RBs and WRs in the mix. But whoever steps into the new QB position will have two legitimate WRs to throw to in seniors Cole Winninghoff (6-4, 185) and Alex Heineman (6-1, 195). Capo Valley slightly improved last year under new coach Matt Poston—3-7 in 2008-09 to 4-6 in 2009-10. With another year of experience under his belt, and an easier schedule, Poston and the Cougars should come away with a few more wins than last year and develop a progressive trend in the win category.


Location: Dana HillsTime: 7 p.m.

ABOUT THE TRITONS2009 Record: 6-5 (3-2 league)09 vs. DH: Loss 38-14Affi liation: South CoastCoach: Eric Patton

2010 Team Overview: A game against San Clemente is always a big one for both schools. The fact that the Dolphins get to play the Tritons at home will be a much needed advantage. Last year, Dana Hills earned an important league win and beat San Clemente 38-14.

San Clemente will have a new QB in junior Travis Wilson (6-6, 215), who has been studying the Triton offense for the past two years. The Dolphins will have to try and stop Wilson from connect-ing with the senior WR tandem of Jordan Micalef (6-2, 185) and Terell Johnson (5-8, 160). Both receivers had effective 2009 seasons and are a threat against any team’s secondary.


Location: Trabuco HillsTime: 7 p.m.

ABOUT THE MUSTANGS2009 Record: 2009 record: 12-2 (5-0 league)09 vs. DH: DNPAffi liation: South CoastCoach: Scott Orloff

2010 Team Overview: Tra-buco Hills’ depth charts have been depleted due to graduating seniors and will only have fi ve returning players for the 2010 season. And the Mustangs will be without their starting quarterback, top running back and top receiver from 2009.

Even though they are missing key offensive players from last year, Trabuco Hills will maintain their steady defensive squad that kept them in games in 2009. Last year, the Mustangs allowed an average of 10.2 points scored against them. Senior linebacker Nick Cody (6-1, 225) will be a key fi gure on defense as he looks to back up a junior year where he had 81 total tackles that included 5.5 sacks.


Location: Dana HillsTime: 7 p.m.

ABOUT THE GRIZZLIES2009 Record: 9-3 (4-1 league)09 vs. DH: DNPAffi liation: Avocado – East Coach: Chris Hauser

2010 Team Overview: After a solid 2009, the Grizzlies enter the new season with some familiar faces. Senior Hunter More (6-3, 190) returns to lead the offense along with four other offensive starters. With the offense returning a healthy number of players, the defensive side appears to be lacking. Only two starters from last year will be return-ing on defense. Luckily for the Griz-zlies, their senior middle linebacker John Ludlow (5-11, 210) is back. With no other defensive starters in tow, Ludlow will have to show his experi-ence as he plays one of the more crucial positions in the game.



Location: Mission ViejoTime: 7 p.m.

ABOUT THE DIABLOS2009 record: 12-1 (5-0 league)09 vs. DH: Won 49- 17Affi liation: South CoastCoach: Bob Johnson

2010 Team Overview: On paper, the reigning South Coast league champs appear to be at a disadvan-tage before they kick off their 2010 season. The Diablos will be without their starting QB, top RB and WR from the 2009-2010 season. But coach Bob Johnson has pride in his program’s depth. Year after year new players are inserted into the system and for the most part, they get results. 2010 looks to be no exception as the junior varsity team went a perfect 10-0 last year.

Five players will return for John-son on offense and fi ve will be re-turning on defense. As a sophomore last year, junior QB Alex Bridgford completed 64 percent of his passes for a total of 339 yards and should win the spot for 2010.


Location: Dana HillsTime: 7 p.m.

ABOUT THE TITANS2009 Record: 2009 Record: 5-5 (2-3 league)09 vs. DH: Loss 37-34 Affi liation: South CoastCoach: Brian Barnes

2010 Team Overview: Coach Bri-an Barnes and his team are looking to rebuild. They were 13-1 in 2008 but only managed a fi ve win season in 2009-2010. The Titans struggled in league play last year and won only two South Coast league games.

But aside from all of the medioc-rity of last year, the Titans have a lot to look forward to in 2010. A key part of the Titans defense will rest on the shoulders of senior defensive end, Sean O’Grady (6-3, 230). Last year, O’Grady had 48 total tackles to go along with 5.5 sacks.

Tesoro’s top receiver, Kyle Wool-bright, is also returning for 2010. Woolbright looks to follow up on an impressive 2009 where he had 42 receptions and 989 all purpose yards.

September 3SANTIAGO SHARKSLocation: Dana Hills

Time: 7 p.m.

ABOUT THE SHARKS2009 Record: 5-6 (4-3 league)09 vs. DH: DNPAffi liation: Big VIIICoach: Jeff Steinberg

2010 Team Overview: The Sharks will have plenty to build on in 2010 as they fi eld a healthy mix of six returning starters on offense and fi ve returning on defense.

Last season, the Sharks were a very pass heavy team. They threw for 2,166 yards and their former quarterback, Brandon Connette, connected with his receivers for 18 touchdown passes. The Dolphins should expect the same kind of of-fensive attack out of the Sharks this year as Santiago’s leading receiver, junior Jemond Hazely is returning. Last year Hazely led the team in receptions (44) and receiving yards (695). Joining Hazely in the passing lanes will be senior WR Mile O’Dell, who had 33 receptions for 374 yards in 2009.


Location: Huntington Beach HighTime: 7 p.m.

ABOUT THE CHARGERS2009 Record: 13-1 (5-0 league)09 vs. DH: Won 34-17Affi liation: SunsetCoach: Dave White

2010 Team Overview: When Dana Hills hits the road to play Edison this year, you can expect some high tension. Last year, the Chargers put a dent in the Dolphins’ season early, beating them 34-17. After that defeat the Dolphins went on a winning streak that put them in the playoffs, only to fi nd themselves squaring off with Edison yet again. The outcome was the same and Dana Hills’ season ended with a 46-16 loss.

But this year the Dolphins will see a different, less experienced Edison team. They will be without starting QB Matt Viles, who torched the Dolphins last September with a season high 485 passing yards and three touchdowns. The Chargers will also be without star WR/RB, Wade Houston.

Page 7: 2010 Football Preview
Page 8: 2010 Football Preview