SRJC Football looks to build off season-opening win


Luis Guittarez

SRJC takes to the line to run kicking drills at a recent practice. De- spite early challenges the team is 1-0 so far in the 2012 season.

Jenna Burkman, Staff Writer

The SRJC football team is off to a solid start, despite a first week filled with sidelining injuries.

SRJC paved the way to a comfortable 51-20 win over Mendocino College in the season opener Sept. 1, giving the Bear Cubs their first victory.

“We played an okay game and still scored 51 points,” said Bear Cub’s head coach Keith Simons.

2012 will mark Simons’ 17th season as head coach and he’s already faced a challenge: losing key players.

“We lost three starting offensive linemen in the first week of practice, so we had to start three freshman in the game,” Simons said.

Along with the three new offensive linemen, freshman quarterback David Sowards made quite a debut in his first official collegiate game. He threw for 320 yards and 5 touchdowns before being pulled after two quarters.

With 23 returning players and nine aggressive freshman starters, the Bear Cubs will only get better.

An obvious team strength is its defense. With two returning All- Conference defensive linemen, Chris Smith and Garrett Guanella, the Bear Cubs’ defense should be solid.

“Our defense is probably our biggest strength right now,” said freshman receiver Mark Adams. “From the beginning, they were the ones who clicked together as a team first.”

Starter Randy Harvey expressed a similar sentiment. “I’m very confident with our defense this season. We did a good job causing Mendocino to turn the ball over, and as long as everyone does their job at each position, I know defense will continue to be our biggest strength,” hesaid.

However, the second-year cornerback knows that if the Bear Cubs want to have a winning season, they must be strong on both sides of the ball, as well as focused in games and practice.

“During practice we need to have high intensity and high energy,” Harvey said. “Not just one day, but every day.”

When asked about their individual goals for this season, both Adams and Harvey had the same answer: win their conference and make it to a bowl game.

“We want to put Santa Rosa on the map,” Harvey said.

With excitement building amongst SRJC sports fans, the Bear Cubs hope this is the start of a long, successful season.

The next game will be at 1p.m. Sept. 15 against DCV at home.