If there was a competitive-eating competition involving high school football teams in San Bernardino County, Sultana would be one of the favorites. While many local coaches have commented on their lack of size, Sultans coach Blake Robbins has a plethora of big guys to lead the way.
“I’m really not sure what it is, but we have a lot of big guys in the program,” Robbins said. “I’m not complaining. If they can play up to their potential, we have a chance to be pretty good.”
Sultana comes into 2011 with a monkey off its back, as it broke a 23-game losing streak with a win at Pacific last September and prevailed over Hesperia for the first time since 2006 in the “Key Game.” While Robbins is happy that those streaks are over, he feels that his team squandered an opportunity to do even more a year ago.
“We went 2-8, but we really felt that we should have won three or four more games,” Robbins said. “We played tough in most of our games but we weren’t able to make the big play. A lot of times we’d move the ball down the field and then commit a turnover or get a penalty that would ruin it.”
As you’d expect, the Sultans are going to depend on their big uglies to pave the way. Leading the way for that unit is senior Charles Mouton (6-2, 295), a third-team all-Sun offensive line selection as a junior. He’ll be joined by seniors Michael Ceballos (5-10, 305), Jeremiah Pele (5-11, 230), Devin Kensley (6-2, 270) and Luis Horta (6-0, 208). Ceballos and Mouton will also start on the defensive line.
Sultana also has a big quarterback returning in junior Austin Robbins (6-4, 195), the coach’s son. Senior Arthur Williams (6-2, 180) returns at wide receiver for Sultana along with senior David Vega (5-4, 130) and junior Gabe Hernandez (5-8, 160). Senior Darnell Aponte (5-11, 190) will be the primary running back.
Senior Terrance Lange (6-2, 235) also brings a unique element to Sultana, as he is capable of playing running back, wide receiver and defensive end. Pele will play middle linebacker while Williams and Vega lead the secondary.
Sultana schedule (Home games in CAPS, * indicates league game)
Sept. 9: at San Bernardino
Sept. 16: YUCCA VALLEY
Sept. 23: PACIFIC
Sept. 30: VICTOR VALLEY
Oct. 7: at Barstow
Oct. 14: at Oak Hills*
Oct. 21: SERRANO*
Oct. 28: at Hesperia*
Nov. 4: APPLE VALLEY*
Nov. 10: vs. Granite Hills (Apple Valley HS)