Area’s Top 5 Quarterbacks
1. Brandon Martinez, Sr. — Is he this year’s version of Arroyo’s Steven Rivera, who won area player of the year last season? He just might be. He’s Mr. Everything after throwing for 2,160 yards, 27 TDs and rushing for 793 yards and 8 TDS. In terms of numbers, he will likely lead everyone. Whether those numbers lead to the Mission Valley League title or a deep run in the Mid-Valley Division remain to be seen.
2. Matt Simko, Chino Hills, Sr.
If this were a draft and you were picking the best quarterback for the next level, Simko is it. He split time at Colony last year and still threw for 1,893 yards, 11 touchdowns and completed 60 percent of his passes. He’s exactly what Chino Hills needed and if the Huskies recapture the Sierra League title, Simko will be a big reason why.
3. Gage Pucci, Damien, Jr.
Toward the end of the season the sophomore’s confidence grew leaps and bounds. He finished with 1,325 yards and 15 TDs and everything I’ve heard about him this summer is he’s ready to take it to the next level. In the three games I watched last year he showed flashes of being something special. Damien needs a game-changer to turns things around and Pucci could be it.
4. Tanner Diebold, Bonita, Jr.
The Bearcats are one of my big surprises in this years rankings because of “Sunshine.” At a school that loves to spread you out, Diebold is the perfect fit that blends size, athleticism and a strong arm. He’s quite the athlete and after having an injury-plagued season under his belt, he’s a comeback player of the year candidate.
5. Ivan Vasquez, La Puente, Sr.
Few quarterbacks were as consistent as Vasquez last season, throwing 22 touchdowns against just two interceptions. He was extremely efficient and with a year under his belt, could be ready to finally help the Warriors unseat four-time defending league champion Azusa.