San Diego High’s football program has bottomed out.
The Cavers forfeited to Hoover on the Monday before the Friday game this week. The reason given was that they had less than 20 players and unable to field a full squad.
There was a time when that many running backs turned out for football at San Diego High.
San Diego’s fall from the heady decade of the 1950s, when the Cavers’ 85-15 record was the best in California and their 1955 team was acclaimed national champion, followed the retirement of Duane Maley after the 1959 season.
San Diego experienced its first winless season in 53 years just two seasons later, going 0-6-2 in 1961 (they were 0-5-1 in 1908, 0-10 in 1984 and 1997, and 0-9 in 2013).
The Cavers have had some successful records since Maley’s retirement and were 7-4 as recently as 2011 but the decline has been steady, with only 16 winning seasons in the last 54, compared with 49 in the first 66.
34-YEAR WAIT FOR HILLTOP
“It feels like a five-thousand pound elephant has been lifted from our shoulders,” Cody Roelof told U-T San Diego reporter Kevin Farmer.
“Our kids have been so close the last four years,” said Roelof, who guided the Hilltop Lancers to their second-ever league championship and first since Stan Canaris coached the Lancers to a 9-1 record and the Metropolitan League title in 1979.
Hilltop edged Mar Vista for the Metro South Bay title, 18-15, on a play suggested by Roelof’s players.
Eschewing a field goal, which could have tied the game and necessitated overtime, the Lancers took their chances on fourth down at the five-yard line with four seconds remaining.
Hilltop quarterback Daniel Sanchez pitched a handoff to Drake Madarang, who followed lead blocker Luis Hernandez into the end zone for the winning score.
ALL ABOARD AIR LAWRENCE
Grossmont’s Anthony Lawrence set records for career passing yardage (8,502) and pass completions (652) and is two short of the career record for touchdowns (91) .
The Foothillers will be in the playoffs after an 8-2 regular season.
Mt. Carmel could have won its first league title since 1994 but lost to Del Norte, 35-28, and shared the Valley League gonfalon with Del Norte and San Marcos…after beating Torrey Pines, 27-0, in the “Beach Bowl,” La Costa Canyon running back Kevin Mann was moved to declare to U-T San Diego reporter Kirk Kenney, “This is the biggest rivalry, I think, in sports.”…after digesting the profoundness of Mann’s pronouncement, Kenney anointed the La Costa concession department with the rare five belches on his five-belch scale…2013 state shot put and discus qualifier Dotsun Ogundeji returned a fumble 58 yards for a Madison touchdown in its 28-7 win over Point Loma…”We kept our eyes up and our heads on a swivel,” said Warhawks defender Sam Vermillion, describing Madison’s approach to Point Loma’s “fly sweep” offense…Helix’s 14-13 victory over Steele Canyon marked Troy Starr’s 200th career win…Starr is 61-12-1 since 2008 with the Highlanders….