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Generals football recognized by BVarsity

The BVarsity All Area football teams were announced, and the Shafter Generals were well represented in the group, giving the Generals the largest amount of players honored in the school's history.

On the offensive side, the Generals' sophomore quarterback Ezekiel Osborn was named to the First Team All Area. Osborn had 2,677 yards passing on the season, with 35 touchdowns. Osborn also won the Most Valuable Player award for the entire South Sequoia League as well. Osborn led the Generals to an undefeated regular season, going 10-0, before losing a heartbreaker in the Central Section semifinal game which ended on a controversial play, with Matilda Torres using an ineligible receiver.

There were several other players on the Shafter team that were also recognized on the offensive side. Also making the First Team Offense was the Offensive Player of the South Sequoia League Maryon Sloan. Sloan is a sophomore wide receiver who had 800 receiving yards and 17 touchdowns receiving. Sloan also had two kickoff returns for touchdowns, to go along with two more touchdowns on punt returns.

Parker Valderrama is a senior offensive lineman who helped guide the Generals on offense, allowing the Shafter offense to average 370 yards per game on the season. He also was named to the First Team Offense.

Jesus Figueroa, a senior wide receiver, was named to the Second Team Offense. Figueroa had 44 receptions and 944 yards receiving, to go along with 10 touchdowns. Joining Figueroa on the Second Team Offense was Jeffrey Vander Poel. Vander Poel is a senior offensive lineman. Making the Third Team Offense were running back Christopher Espinoza and kicker Ernesto Guerrero. Espinoza had almost 1,000 yards rushing on the season, ending the year with 944 yards rushing and 17 touchdowns. Guerrero ended the season with 67 points kicking.

On defense, South Sequoia League's Defensive Player of the Year Alex Aguirre of the Generals was named to the All Area First Team Defense. Aguirre, a senior linebacker, ended the year with 73 tackles, two sacks and three fumble recoveries. Aguirre was an integral part of the defense that ended up making the offense a better team because of the opportunities that were had because of the performance of the Generals' defense.

Being named to the Second Team Defense for the Generals was junior defensive lineman Matt Cordova, as well as sophomore linebacker Nick Rossette and sophomore defensive back JJ Vasquez.

According to Head Coach Jerald Pierucci, this was the largest number of players in one year to be recognized on the All Area teams. "This is the most players we have ever had on the All Valley list in my tenure at Shafter High. It really speaks to what our program is doing in developing our athletes for success, on and off the field."

Pierucci also said that Alex Aguirre being named to the First Team Defense is a special one for the program. "He is the first First Team Defensive Player we have had at Shafter in my tenure as Head Coach."

Pierucci concluded, "I am excited for what the future holds at Shafter and this year is really a testament that small schools can be the best in the area."


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