Friday, October 24, 2014

Adventure Reading

Reading Is FUNdamental

An Ancient Warrior
An Incredible Treasure
A Lethal Enemy

Worked for me! 

Another solid suggestion from Andrew Contreras.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Westlake Game

After a bye week and two solid weeks of practice, it was time to hit the field again for our final non-league game of the season.

Newbury Park Panthers (5-1)
Westlake Warriors (3-3)

It was a Homecoming of sorts 

After all, I had been the Head Varsity Football Coach at Westlake H.S. for 11 seasons from 1978-1988.

During my tenure, the Warriors did not have an on campus stadium like they do now. Instead, all of our "home" games were played at Thousand Oaks H.S.

Game Captains

Scout Team: #19 Tanner Coolidge
Special Teams: #23 Andrew Noble
Defense: #50 Alex Urias
Offense: #7 Tyler Hwang

Ryan Matlock leading us out
with the BIG HAMMER

Dario Longhetto with
nice Pre-Game Hops

The game looked to be a close one as Westlake was much better than their record indicated with their three losses coming at the hands of powerhouse programs Red Mountain (Arizona), Long Beach Poly and Mater Dei.


Dario's First Kickoff
was a Touchback!

Westlake Ball: The Warriors ten play drive covered 36 yards and ended when they went for it on Fourth Down but LB Austin Matney came up with a -11 yard QB sack to stop the threat.

Tavis Valenzuela on the tackle

Newbury Park Ball: The Panthers' six play drive only covered 14 yards but Tavis Valenzuela's 31 yard punt was downed by Alex Urias at the Warriors' 11 yard line.

Tavis Valenzuela Punting

Alex Urias Downing the Punt

Westlake ran the ball quite well

Westlake Ball: Westlake picked up another 35 yards on another six plays before punting.

Swarming to the Ball

Newbury Park Ball: The Panthers ran two plays as the First Quarter came to a close all knotted up at Panthers 0 - Warriors 0.


Tyler Hwang throwing through
a forest of Warrior arms

Newbury Park Ball: The drive that ended the First Quarter continued with another nine plays ending in a two yard TD run by Kalani Sanchez. Dario Longhetto add the PAT and the Panthers led 7-0. In total, this drive covered 73 yards on 11 plays with the key being a Fourth Down fake punt. That play covered ten yards on a pass from Tyler Hwang to Andrew Noble.

Kalani Sanchez on the loose

Westlake Ball: The Warriors countered with a six play, 65 yard scoring drive. Their TD was a 32 yard pass, the PAT was good and we were tied up again at 7-7.

Newbury Park Ball: The Panthers only gained 13 yards and threw an interception on the eighth play of the drive.

Shawn Gocke driving on
the Westlake Receiver

An Open Andrew Noble

A Big Run by Tyler Hwang

Westlake Ball: The Warriors wasted no time in cashing in on the Panther turnover. After a 41 yard run on their first play, they hit an eight yard TD pass on their second play. The PAT was good again and the Warriors led 14-7.

Goal Line Offense

TD Kalani Sanchez

#6 Jack Ensey flying over a great
block by Austin Matney

Newbury Park Ball: A seven play, 63 yard drive ended on downs.

Ryan Matlock
on a 32 yard scamper

Matlock again,
this time for 14 yards

Westlake Ball: The Warriors ended the First Half with a harmless three play, 17 yard drive as time expired.

The Half Time score was Westlake 14 - Newbury Park 7.


BIG Play by Mike Estandian
recovering a surprise onside kick
to start the Second Half

Ryan Matlock's Miracle Catch was
called back due to a holding penalty

Newbury Park Ball: Needing to cash in on the great field position that Mike Estandian's recovery of the Westlake surprise onside kick, NP drove eight plays and 35 yards before turning the ball over on downs again.

Ryan Matlock on a 26 yard run

Nice Double-Team Block by
Vincent Carreon and Kalani Sanchez

Westlake Ball: The Warriors enjoyed an efficient 12 play, 72 yard scoring drive that ended with a perfect six yard TD pass in the back corner of the end zone with a one handed catch. The PAT was good as Westlake extended their lead to 21-7.

Westlake TD Pass

I don't think that our DB could have played it much better than this.

Newbury Park Ball: Time was running out and NP had to get things done in a hurry! Unfortunately, we only came up with 39 yards on seven plays as the drive ended with our second interception of the game. 

Great Grab by Kaiden Raduziner

Westlake Ball: Westlake was driving as the Third Quarter ended. They had covered 36 yards on four plays up to that point. The Third Quarter ended with the score being Westlake 21- Newbury 7.


Westlake Ball: The Warriors continued their drive for two more plays that covered only six yards before punting.

Newbury Park Ball: Time to start a furious comeback! Six plays and 89 yards later, the drive ended with a 17 yard strike from Tyler Hwang to Ryan Matlock. Longhetto's PAT was good again and the Westlake lead was cut to 21-14. 

Ryan Matlock's TD

Westlake Ball: After a great Kickoff tackle by Austin Matney and Jack Walsh, Westlake had the ball at their own seven yard line. The Warriors would fumble a handoff exchange on their third play of an eight yard drive and Nicolas Cellona would recover it deep in Westlake territory!

Warrior FUMBLE!

Cellona Recovers

Newbury Park Ball: In only three plays, the Panthers were able to drive the necessary 20 yards to pay dirt! Big catches by Kaiden Raduziner and Ryan Matlock led to a one yard QB Mathieu Paredes-like QB Wedge for the TD.

Now, to go for the win or the tie? Never in doubt -- go for the win! Our two-point pass play was knocked away on a good effort by a Westlake LB. Westlake still led 21-20. 

Another fine Kaiden Raduziner catch

Ryan Matlock came down
at the one yard line

WEDGE for SIX!!!

Two-Point Pass

Our Defense had to come up BIG!

Westlake Ball: On the third play of the Westlake drive that had covered only 5 yards, SS Tyler Hwang broke up a Warrior pass that ricocheted into the waiting arms of FS Kaiden Raduziner. We had the break that we needed!

Tyler Hwang breaks it up and . . .

. . . Kaiden Raduziner intercepts it!!!

Kalani Sanchez on a 20 yard pick up

Newbury Park Ball: After this nice 20 yard gain by Sanchez on the first play of the drive, we could only muster an incomplete pass followed by our third interception of the day.

Westlake Ball: The Warriors were satisfied to turn the ball over on downs after consuming a lot of the remaining game time via a seven play, 36 yard drive.

Newbury Park Ball: The Panthers last chance ended meekly gaining only eight yards on four plays.

Westlake Ball: The Warrriors took a knee three times and the game was over. The Final Score was Westlake 21 - Newbury Park 20.

Westlake is now 4-3 and opens their Marmonte League season next Friday against Moorpark.

Newbury Park drops to 5-2 and opens our Camino League season at home against the 4-3 Camarillo Scorpions.

Camarillo will be another tough game for us. So far, their non-league season results in order are:

Beat Rio Mesa 16-6
Lost to Paso Robles 19-21
Beat Simi Valley 35-14
Beat Ventura 16-6
Lost to Saugus 0-9
Lost to St. Bonaventure 14-17
Beat Calabasas 34-20

Time to Re-Group

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Visitors from Sweden

One of the fun things about having coached American football for five seasons in Europe has been meeting wonderful people in each and every country that we have lived.

Sarah, Aston and Lucas Grip

While we can still stay in contact via e-mails and Facebook, but there is nothing like face-to-face contact.

Tonight we were excited to see two of our Swedish friends from our season coaching the Hässleholm Hurricanes back in 2010.

Lucas Grip was a tough minded offensive guard for the Hurricanes. His two brothers Jonas (The Godfather) and Rasmus were also stalwarts of our team that year. Jonas was a big, physical defensive lineman while Rasmus was a very quick outside linebacker.

Lucas and his wife Sarah are here on vacation and as an added bonus, we were introduced to their new baby boy Aston. He is so cute!

Accompanied by some coffee and fika, we had a delightful evening catching up on old times.

The City of Camarillo also wants to thank the Grips for spending the day shopping at the City's Outlet Mall all day long.

GREAT people.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Bye Week Road Trip

Our Newbury Park H.S. American football program was having its annual bye week, so Mike and I took advantage of the situation to drive up to the San Francisco Bay area to see our beloved Washington Huskies (4-1) play the California Golden Bears (4-1) in Berkeley in a pivotal PAC-12 Northern Division contest.

We left Camarillo at about 6:00 a.m. on Friday, first stop . . .

. . . San Luis Obispo for Breakfast
at 1491 Monterey St., SLO

Male-bonding road trips mandate great food stops.

It's the law.

The Farm

We made great time, so we opted to stop off at Leland Stanford Jr. University to check out their facilities. 

They weren't always the Cardinal 
you know . . . 

They used to be the Indians

Not PC enough I guess

The Cardinal (3-2) were hosting the Washington State Cougars (2-4) that evening. The Cougars QB, Connor Halliday, had thrown for an NCAA single game record 734 yards in a 60-59 loss to California last week. Staying to watch the Cougars' high flying offense was tempting but we opted to press on to Berkeley.

Halliday was only 42 for 69 passing for a mere 292 yards as the Cardinal defense prevailed, Stanford won 34-17. 

We also stopped into check out nearby Menlo College. It was quaint.

Crossing on the Bay Bridge


Once in Berkeley, Spenger's for a cup of their clam chowder on a Friday just seemed like the right thing to do.

 Airbnb Website find

Our friend, Marianne Damboise, recommended this website for interesting travel accommodations. 

Using the Airbnb website, we found a great room in this eclectic holistic medical arts home in the hills above the University of California campus, an easy ten minute walk to UC's Memorial Stadium for Saturday's game.

A not so easy twenty minute walk back to our room though.

Walking down to the UC campus
Friday night

Cool tree roots

 Nice widow

Cal's revamped Memorial Stadium

The Dawgs may be in trouble Saturday

Game Day Parking
is never fun

Not real

The bear I mean, that actually is the real Mike and I.

God knows that I could
use their services

 Paranoid Student's Dorm Window

Please Dawgs, wear
Gold Helmets this week!

Not a big crowd at
the UC Tennis Stadium

So, why you ask would we pass up the Stanford-Washington State game you ask?

Simple really . . .

San Leandro Pirates (1-5)
Berkeley Yellow Jackets (0-5)

Friday Night Lights is all about high school football!

Epic high school football at that!

Plus I was tired of driving and the Berkeley H.S. campus was within easy walking distance from our abode.

 Berkeley Pride

Captains Out

The left offensive tackle, #75, was one big Yellow Jacket! 

Sunset at BHS

"Has anybody seen the BHS Coach?"

Game Action

The score was 3-2 in favor of San Leandro at the half. The only things missing were Goldie Hawn coaching the Berkeley team and Mike and I sticking around for the second half.

San Leandro would go on to a 33-9 victory according to the Saturday morning periodicals.

Why did we leave early?

 We were hungry of course

Road trip rules trump Friday Night Lights.

Saturday found us on an early morning 6.70 mile stroll all over Berkeley.

We saw many things . . .

Capitalism is Alive and Well

 Cool Bookstores

Well, DUH!

Lots and LOTS of food options
in Berkeley it turns out

At about the half way point of our walk we had a sumptuous breakfast at the Bleecker St. Bistro located at 2498 Telegraph Ave.

It was GOOD!

Freudian Slippers

Get it?

 UC Looms Ahead

Sather Gate

Sproul Hall

Fifty years ago, this was the scene of much of Mario Savio's Free Speech Movement (FSM) protest demonstrations that still, to this day, defines the Berkeley campus.

The Campanile

 Ghostly Tree

A Wood Nymph

Lynn O. "Pappy" Waldorf
Cal's Head Football Coach

Waldorf led the Golden Bears to three straight Rose Bowls in 1948-50.

The Golden Bears lost all three of these Rose Bowl games to Northwestern 14-20 in 1948, to Ohio State 14-17 in 1949 and to Michigan 6-14 in 1950.

Cool Mosaics on a random,
unnamed building

Ah, the W.P.A. built it

Pelican Sighting

After our tour, we returned to our mountain retreat to shower and change for the game.

That's us in the mirror near the
Panoramic View

WOW! That is a nice view

UW Alumni Gathering at Cal's
Greek Theater

Good Sponsor

Never too young for a future Husky
to learn the rudiments of Beer Pong

The Husky Band arrived at
the Greek

Who is that in the yellow hat behind the tubas?

Yes, THAT guy

Why, none other than Michael Contreras!

I Love the UW Band!

 Husky Cheerleader Hair

 UW Baton Twirler

She had her act together on this day!

The view from our seats

This should be fun!

Here come the Bears

One of a kazillion Cal Bubble Screens

 Husky Swarm

defense! Defense!! DEFENSE!!!

 Tightwad Hill

So, you are too cheap to buy a ticket to the game? No problem, just have a seat on the hill above the stadium.

Game's End

A GREAT Day to be a Husky!

Time to Celebrate

First, a gelato at the Caravaggio Gelateria (1797 Shattuck Ave.). Eat dessert first, life is short.

Then we had a great grilled cheese sandwich at The Melt (2400 Telegraph Ave.).

Finally, we stopped for a few beers at Freddy Bastiand's place watching the USC-Arizona game.

We needed all of the sustenance we could muster for our final walk up the hill to the our room.

A good seven hour drive home on Sunday and we were ready for the challenge of preparing for our next game this coming Friday at Westlake H.S. for our game against the 3-3 JV Warriors.