The SoCal Coyotes AAA football franchise will be back in action Saturday night at Xavier Prep.
The Coyotes, members of the Southern California Football Alliance, take on the San Diego Thunder at 7 p.m. Tickets are $10 and available at the gate. Parking is $3.
Fans are urged to arrive early as more than 2,000 attended the season opener when SoCal beat South Bay, 44-0.
This will be a showdown between two teams that have not allowed a point this season. Last week, the Thunder beat the Las Vegas Lions, 50-0.
Fans are also encouraged to download the new, free SoCal Coyotes smartphone app to listen to games on their phones with play-by-play provided by Matt McKay. It is also available on KXPS Team 1010.
Here’s some game info provided by the team for the Saturday night showdown:
WHEN THE COYOTES ARE ON OFFENSE: Fans flock to see the Coyotes Silver Stretch offense, a potent Run ‘n’ Shoot attack that floods defenses with a fleet of the nation’s fastest receivers — all sub-4.4. First-time fans immediately notice speed, speed and more speed, with every Coyote receiver a threat to score once they touch the ball.
Make no mistake: The Coyotes love the vertical deep ball. All-American receiver Rashad “The Franchise” Roberts, (College of the Desert) from Atlanta, Ga., holds virtually every Coyote career receiving record. He turned in another stunning performance against the Spartans with 11 catches for 176 yards and two touchdowns. Former Arena Football standouts Kevin Page (Glenville State) had five catches for 90 yards, and A.J. Allen (Central Arkansas) had three catches for 45 yards and a score. Wayne Jacobs (New Mexico Highlands), arguably the fastest Coyote, had 24 yards on four receptions.
Rookie S-back Nigel Simmons (College of Sequoias) showed flashes of brilliance in training camp with a punishing combination of size (6-1, 230) and speed. Pushing Simmons is Deshawn Smith (Eastern Oregon), a situational back with game-breaking speed.
PULLING THE TRIGGER: Former Cathedral City star Nate Lewis (Dixie State) has blossomed into one of the most dominant quarterbacks in AAA football history. Running the Coyotes no-huddle attack from the line of scrimmage, the 6-5, 230-pound gunner was 28 of 38 for 376 yards and four touchdowns against the Spartans, with an NFL passer rating of 117.87. His long-ball accuracy leaves little margin for error, and why the San Jose Sabercats kept him to the final cut this spring in the Arena Football League.
The Coyotes have thrown the ball as many as 61 times in a single game. Lewis’s single-game high is 574 yards and seven TDs (versus Las Vegas Cobras, 2012). Lewis has thrown two touchdowns out of his own end zone; 97 yards to Rashad Roberts (versus San Diego Thundercats, 2012); and 98 yards to former Coyote Mondo Delgado (versus Las Vegas, 2013).
WHEN THE THUNDER HAS THE BALL: The SoCal ‘Darkside Defense’ is loaded with talent. The middle is anchored by veteran nose tackle and Coyote Defensive Player of the Year Cedric Cox (6-1, 325, Florida State), who had three solo tackles against the Spartans. The real fun for the Coyotes, however, starts on the outside with former NCAA Preseason All-American Devin Howard (6-3, 285, New Mexico Highlands), a speed-rusher with tremendous inside strength that has been compared to J.J. Watts. Howard had three solo tackles, five assists and a half sack, and harassed the entire South Bay offense from the opening snap. Big Dan Lopez (6-4, 285, College of the Desert) pinched the other end with four solo tackles.
At linebacker, captain Devin Jones (Southeast Louisiana) had eight solo tackles, three assists and a pass deflection in the impressive home opener, as the former Bayou Bowl MVP dominated with thunderous hits and field leadership. David “The Diesel” Cathcart (Mt. San Jacinto), switched back to his natural position at inside linebacker, answered with a sack, two solo tackles and a blocked field goal.
Former Coyote Man of the Year Jordan Cornell (Cathedral City, 6-3, 265) had two solo tackles, 2 assists, and a sack and a half. Dana Prieto (Palm Springs High) had two solo tackles, two assists, and defensed two passes. Bryan Garcia (Palm Springs High) had two assists.
The Coyotes secondary is the strongest in history. All-American strong safety Bo “Night Train” Bovain had four solo tackles and two assists. NFL prospect Shaine Boyle (Faulkner University) picked off one pass , nearly had another and had two solo tackles. Shutdown corner Chris Kelly (Reedley College) had an interception and two tackles, including a facemask-rattling open-field stop. Newcomer Ryan Pervine (College of the Desert), who had a sack, two tackles and broke up a pass, is a raw sleeper with the ability to take over a game.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Ageless Jason Franek (Hemet High School, 6-3, 220) had one solo tackle, two assists, a punt block, two fumble recoveries and scored the first defensive touchdown in Coyote history, all in spite of being 34 years old. Franek earned the SWAT Fuel Special Teams Player of the Week.
DAN THE ‘ICE’ MAN: The Coyotes, who only have only punted nine times in 20 games, recorded their 11th game without a punt. but proved fearless with the new addition of long-ball kicker Dan Kelly, the fourth all-time leading scorer at the University of Hawaii. Kelly hit from 45, 39, and 48 yards, while barely missing from 51 and 46.