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Another title is on the line

Just like last season, Santa Clarita Christian’s offense will have five new starters up front

Posted: August 23, 2009 10:40 p.m.
Updated: August 24, 2009 4:55 a.m.

Santa Clarita Christian football head coach Garrick Moss, front, walks away from a huddle Friday at Central Park. Moss and the Cardinals must replace the entire offensive line if they want to repeat as CIF-Southern Section Division I 8-Man champions.

 
At the end of practice at Central Park early Thursday evening, Santa Clarita Christian football head coach Garrick Moss had a few last messages to his players.

He told them of the importance of a good offensive line.

Then he reminded them of what Faith Baptist head coach John Rasmussen said after the Cardinals defeated the Contenders in the CIF-Southern Section Division I 8-Man championship in December 5.

“All year long, (tailback Collin) Keoshian and (wingback Steven) Borden were able to do what they did because of the offensive line,” Rasmussen said nine months ago.

This year’s Cardinals could rise or fall based on the performance of the offensive line.

Like last season, the Cardinals will send out five new starters.

It worked last year, especially late.

But there was a transition period.

Moss said his boys had their hiccups early, especially on the communication side of things.

But as the playoffs approached, they kicked it into another gear.

“Every week they got better,” Moss said.

The culmination was the CIF championship game.

SCCS ran 68 plays, running the ball 66 times.

But Russell Gage, Joe Grayem, Micah Dixon, Austin Lillenberg and Brian Schraner are gone now.

The Cardinals haven’t finalized their starting lineup, but Moss said there are a few kids that have stepped forward in the position battle.

Three of those players are center Zach Cronin, pulling guard Adrian Mosley and 295-pound lineman Christian Gault.

Moss said this line has a size advantage over last year’s line and potentially could be good if not better than last year’s.

That’s great news for the SCCS running game.

Because there is such a discrepancy between pass and run at SCCS, this offensive line may have the most pressure on it in the Santa Clarita Valley.

“It’s very important, very important,” Keoshian said of the line’s role this season. “The line determines how us running backs run. As long as the snaps are good and the line is blocking, we’ll be good this season.”

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