West Covina quarterback Jon Najera missed his team’s season opener last Friday against Covina with a knee injury, but Bulldogs head coach Mike Maggiore estimates there’s an 80-percent chance the senior will play this Friday against Loyola.
Sophomore Antonio “Noodles” Hull got the start against Covina and led West Covina to a 31-0 win. If Najera returns, Hull will shift to running back. Maggiore also expects center Raul Gomez, the team’s top lineman, to return this week. Gomez missed the Covina game after having stitches removed from his leg.
With Najera and Gomez back, West Covina should fare a lot better this season against the upper-division Cubs. Loyola had little trouble with a banged up West Covina team in last year’s 35-7 win.
“Last year, they got up on us and we kind of hung our heads a little bit,” Maggiore said. “I just want us to compete. We’ve looked good against Claremont and Covina, but this another test. This is a huge step up. I’m anxious for it.”