Date(s) - 04/12/2014
Ben Altamirano Field
The Western New Mexico University football team continues to prep for the Spring Game that will take place on Saturday, April 12 at 11 a.m. at Ben Altamirano Field.
The Mustangs have a lot of returners back from a season ago, including over 20 seniors. Zachary Dembrowski (Lake Elsinore/Elsinore HS) has been a staple along the defensive line for WNMU since his arrival. This past season, he was second on the team in total tackles (52), and also added seven tackles for loss, three sacks and a pass breakup. In the defensive backfield, Eldrick Bright (Deland, FL/Deland HS) and Deshawn Hathorne (Temecula, CA/Chaparral) are coming off of solid junior campaigns. Bright was third on the team in tackles (46), while adding two tackles for loss, an interception, nine pass breakups and 10 passes defended. Hathorne led the team with three interceptions, while adding 33 tackles, two for loss, four pass breakups and seven passes defended.
Other returners on defense that saw significant time in 2013 include junior Randy Perez (Murrieta, CA/Vista Murrieta), junior Anthony Avina (Lake Elsinore, CA/Lakeside HS), senior Brandon Perkins (Tucson, AZ), senior Adrian Lopez (Santa Fe Springs, CA), senior Kristian King (Redlands, CA/Redlands East Valley). Junior Eddy Martinez will make the switch from fullback to the defensive line, while senior Oscar Ceniceros (Anthony, NM/Canutillo HS) returns from injury. Senior Darius Guillory (Temecula, CA/Chaparral) will be at safety, after splitting time last season at wide receiver and safety. Junior Jacob Dexter (Murrieta, CA/Vista Murrieta) (20 tackles) and sophomore CJ Tauala (Oceanside, CA/Oceanside) (8 tackles) will be on the defensive line, while senior Mana Semo (10 tackles) and senior Johnny Delcoure (Fallbrook, CA/Fallbrook) (11 tackles) move to linebacker and will join senior Cody Hawkins (Show Low, AZ) (14 tackles). Senior David Vasquez (Oceanside, CA/Oceanside HS), formerly a three-year starter on the offensive line, moves to defensive line. Perez tallied 38 tackles, had a tackle for loss, along with four pass breakups and passes defended. Avina recorded a team-high 8.5 tackles for loss, while adding 2.5 sacks, a fumble recovery and 32 tackles.
“Anthony is going into his third-year as a starter and showed signs of dominance last year and looks good this year,” Clark said. “Darius is looking good at safety after fighting through injuries last year. David has taken some reps on the defensive line and has looked solid. The redshirts Dominic, Leo and Jordan have all done good things, along with Mana and Johnny.”
Perkins collected 31 stops, one for loss, had an interception and four pass breakups and five passes defended. Lopez had a stellar freshman year with 35 tackles, one for loss and had two pass breakups and defended. Contreras had 17 tackles. King posted 21 tackles and had a pass breakup.
Offense will see the return of junior quarterback Mitch Glasmann (Temecula, CA/Chaparral), who was the RMAC Offensive Freshman of the Year. As a sophomore, he threw for 2,876 yards, 26 touchdowns and had just nine interceptions. His main returning targets include senior Donald Byrd (Long Beach, CA/Long Beach Poly), who had 60 catches for 692 yards and five touchdowns. He was named to the All-RMAC Second-Team as both a receiver and returner in 2013 and has been All-Conference the past two seasons. Byrd returned 18 punts for 239 yards and a touchdown. Senior tight end Brent Courtney (Oceanside CA/Carlsbad HS) added 26 catches for 337 yards and three touchdowns, while junior Larry Young posted 14 receptions for 217 yards and four scores.
A trio of running backs return from last year in senior Cleavon Barnes (Lancaster, CA), senior Tyler Jackson (San Diego, CA/Ramona HS) and sophomore Khayree Sanders(Fontana, CA/Carter). Barnes rushed 25 times for 52 yards and had a touchdown, while Sanders added 18 attempts for 65 yards. Jackson will return this season to help solidify the backfield. Redshirt freshmen Marquis Rodgers and tight end Matt Grieb (Temecula, CA/Chaparral) will also help add to the offense. The offensive line returns junior Michael Coe (Carlsbad, CA/Carlsbad), a Second-Team All-RMAC selection and two-time All-Conference award recipient, junior Zayde Khalil (Murrieta, CA/Vista Murrieta) as he enters his third year starting, junior Zachary Andrews (San Diego, CA/Rancho Bernardo) and junior Jacob Costilow (Wildomar, CA/Elsinore).
On special teams, junior Josh McIntire (El Cajon, CA/West Hills) made six field goals, with a long of 47. He also connected on 29 extra points.
“Having Tyler back will help as he has looked good this spring,” Clark said. “Marquis and Matt have also looked good this spring, while Cleavon has run hard and looks much improved. Across the board we have a lot of young players that have done good things and have shown up as possible starters and contributors next fall.”