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Southwest Raiders take on new look in 2011 Phillip Brents | Fri, Sep 02 2011 12:29 AM

The Southwest Raiders finished 5-5 last season, third with a 1-2 showing in the Metro-South Bay League. The Raiders’ .500 mark wasn’t enough to crack the San Diego Section Division III playoff muster, and that’s a shame considering how far the program had come under former head coach Mike Esposito.

James Lewis takes over charge of the team this season and it will be a Southwest squad definitely rebuilding on the offensive side of the football.

Lamar Weston threw for 709 yards and six touchdowns last season while Pierre Davis was the team’s big ground-gainer with 1,155 rushing yards and eight TDs. Marcus Gladden amassed 407 receiving yards and seven scores. All were lost to graduation.

Key personnel being counted on this year include juniors Omar Felix (fullback/middle linebacker) and Oscar Lezcano (tight end/defensive end) and senior Juan Sanchez (offensive line).

Also being counted on are Rjay Rodriguez (receiver/running back/cornerback), Jose Magana (guard/defensive line) and Chris Martinez (receiver/safety).

"We think we can have another .500 season if everyone stays healthy," Lewis said. "Our goal is to keep getting better day in and day out. Our team has been working extremely hard every day."

Southwest defeated Hamilton (Anza), Mountain Empire, the California Military Institute and St. Joseph Academy in non-league play last season and topped San Ysidro in Metro-South Bay League play in 2010.

The Raiders have rematches against Hamilton (Sept. 2 at Southwest) and the CMI (Sept. 23 in another home game) and also play Bakersfield Christian again (Sept. 30 in Bakersfield). The Raiders dropped a 16-13 decision last year to the Bakersfield team while defeating Hamilton, 25-18, and CMI 36-6.  

Southwest adds Holtville (Sept. 9) and Calipatria (Oct. 7) to this year’s schedule — both road contests.

The Raiders defeated Hamilton last year en route to a 3-1 confidence-building start.


Southwest Raiders 2011 Schedule

September
2: Hamlilton at Southwest
9: Southwest at Holtville
16: Bye
23: California Military at Southwest
30: Southwest at Bakersfield Christian
October
7: Southwest at Calipatria
14: Sweetwater at Southwest
21: Southwest at Mater Dei Catholic
28: Southwest at Hilltop
November
4: San Ysidro at Southwest
10: Mar Vista at Southwest

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