WAC: 5 players to watch

08/28/2013 8:44 PM

08/28/2013 8:45 PM

1. Quian Newson, Livingston. Newson, a junior, hasn't done anything on the varsity level yet, but anybody built like he's built (6-2, 230), who can run an 11-flat 100-meter dash well, you should keep an eye on him.

2. Kenny Smart, Central Catholic. The senior kicker, the leading scorer in the state last year, made 80 consecutive PATs during one stretch. Has made a 60-yard FG in practice so you know he has plenty of leg, though it seldom is needed with the Raiders' vaunted offense.

3. Spencer Stark, Central Catholic. There's a reason the Raiders won a state title last season and there's a reason the Raiders RB tandem of Ray Lomas and Rey Vega rushed for more than 3,700 combined yards last season: The offensive line. Spencer (6-3, 325) is back and he'll most likely lead the District in pancake blocks.

4. Ja'Quan Gardner, Central Valley. Gardner, a senior running back, needs 1,594 yards to become the Stanislaus District's all-time leading rusher. But Gardner, who amassed 1,985 as a sophomore, also could break the single-season mark of 2,195 set by Hughson's Homer Garza in 1997.

5. Frank Ginda, Pacheco. Ginda (ILB/RB) started at outside linebacker as a sophomore. He's back for his second varsity campaign and will play a key role on both sides of the ball.

— Joe Cortez

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