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Calvary Christian: Season preview

Two strengths

1. Passing attack. Six-foot-4, 210-pound Buddy Adzima, an accurate signal caller with great size, is in his second year running coach Chris Rivera's West Coast/Wing-T hybrid. Protecting him is a veteran offensive line — LT Adam Smith, LG John Ute, C Thomas Hooten, RG Scott Winters, RT Marcos Montanez — that Rivera feels is the team's strongest unit. At receiver, Calvary has experience in wideout Johnny Hubbard and athletic tight end Marcos Quinones, who doubles as a guard on the basketball team.

2. Defense. The linebackers, led by Northside transfer John Stephens, are talented playmakers. "He's going to have a huge impact for us," Rivera said. "We'll play better defense than this school's ever played."

Coach: Chris Rivera (third season, 9-11) | Last season: 4-6 | Class: B, District 6 | Colors: Navy and silver

In the six-year history of Calvary Christian football, the Warriors have never finished above .500. The playoffs have also remained just beyond the team's grasp. But with a strong senior core — eight of Calvary's players have been together for four years — the Warriors should field their strongest team ever. The opportunity to reach both plateaus is attainable.

Two questions

1. How long will it take a young, inexperienced secondary to mature? Rivera will need his defensive line and linebackers to pressure the quarterback while his backfield learns on the fly. Senior safety Grant Flammer is a steadying presence for the secondary. Running back Jordan Ankrom will shift over to defense and man the free safety spot.

2. Will a lack of depth undo Calvary? If the injury bug hits, the Warriors could be in trouble. Rivera indicated he will play his best athletes on defense and have them fill in on offense when available. "I'm going to try to not Ironman a whole lot, but let's face it, I'm in the same boat as almost everyone else in this county."

Bryan Burns, Times staff writer

Calvary Christian: Season preview 09/04/08 [Last modified: Thursday, September 4, 2008 3:38pm]
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