In the first five years of the Summit football program, every year has been an improvement over the previous years. Considering that year five resulted in the SkyHawks going to the Eastern Division championship game before falling to Wildomar Elsinore, there’s only one thing that Summit can do to continue that trend. Summit coach Tony Barile, for one, enjoys the increased expectations.
“Our kids who are in the program now expect to win in the playoffs, expect to go far,” Barile said. “We’ve won playoff games two years in a row now, so it’s what they are used to achieving. These kids now believe that they are supposed to win.”
Summit does lose some oomph from last year’s division runner-up, namely wide receiver Devon Blackmon – the top recruit in the county and now an Oregon Duck – and running back Montigo Alford. Losing their big-play ability is a blow, but it will force the SkyHawks to beat their opponents in different ways.
“You can’t replace a Devon or a ‘Tigo, but what you can do is work with what you got,” Barile said. “We’ll lose some big plays, but we are going to take yards in 10 and 15-yard chunks and be successful that way.”
Summit has plenty of personnel to do just that, as they have senior running back Jamaal Williams (6-2, 198) and senior wide receiver Donte Deayon (5-10, 158) returning. Both have verbally committed to Division I schools, with Williams committing to BYU and Deayon committing to Boise State. Senior quarterback Bernard Porter (6-1, 180) also returns after starting much of the previous two seasons.
The SkyHawks also have four returning senior offensive line starters to pave the way for the skill guys, including fourth-year starter Devon Swan (6-1, 255). Joining Swan will be Isaac Villagrana (6-2, 235), Tony Aguilera (6-0, 245) and Josh Parra (6-0, 265).
The line will also be a strength defensively, as senior all-Sunkist League selection Nikko Taylor (6-1, 260) will be joined by Swan and junior defensive end Keenan Sykes (6-3, 240) as returners up front. Williams will pace the linebacking corps while Deayon – a first-team all-Sun cornerback as a junior – will move to safety and lead the secondary.
Summit schedule (Home games in CAPS, * indicates league game)
Sept. 2: ETIWANDA
Sept. 9: at Redlands
Sept. 16: FONTANA
Sept. 22: COLTON
Oct. 7: at Murrieta Mesa
Oct. 14: RIVERSIDE NORTE VISTA*
Oct. 21: vs. Riverside Patriot (Rubidoux HS)*
Oct. 28: BLOOMINGTON*
Nov. 4: at Jurupa Valley*
Nov. 11: KAISER*
All home games will be played at Miller High School.