Under head coach Mike Hastings, the Pointers have established themselves as one of the elite football programs in San Diego. In four of the past five seasons, they have played in Qualcomm Stadium for the Division III CIF title.
In San Diego Section play, only Oceanside, a Division II dynasty, has been to the “Q” more during that time.
Last season’s appearance resulted in a bitter fourth-quarter loss to rival Cathedral Catholic after the Pointers had dominated the Dons for three periods on a rainy afternoon. Hastings, his staff and players would love nothing more than another opportunity to earn a CIF Championship banner.
“It’s our goal every year to win Western League and compete for the CIF championship,” Hastings said.
To do that, Hastings knows his players must avoid serious injuries, a factor he feels played a key role last season when “one of our most talented teams” fell just short of a section title.
“We are a young team this year,” Hastings said. “Each summer we take a retreat to Big Bear. This year I took 46 kids, and 32 of them were new.”
During the retreat, the players learned the importance of the program’s motto —EMAP (Every Man A Pointer), bonded as a team and developed 10 season-long goals on offense, defense and special teams.
“It’s a team that needs to come together early, but a fun team,” Hastings said. “They learn and get along well and I think in the end it’s going to be another very good team to enjoy and come out to watch.”
The Pointers have produced a long line of highly-recruited NCAA Division I prospects, and this year is no exception. In 2010, the distinction goes to 6-foot-3-inch, 280-pound Christian Heyward, jovial off the field but a terror from his defensive line position.
“When you have a preseason All-American like Christian, it’s pretty exciting,” Hastings said. “He’s very humble, but he doesn’t back down from anyone and he’s going to anchor our defense.”
Hastings said Heyward has been offered scholarships from every Pac-10 school except Stanford and 30 other Division I schools.
Besides a strong defensive line, Hastings also is pleased with a group of defensive backs he predicts will make a lot of plays for and help the defense set the tone. On the other side of the ball, the offense is led by senior quarterback Sean McKaveney.
“We have a quarterback who is 6-feet-5-inches-tall with a strong arm and some good young receivers who are learning their assignments,” Hastings said. “I think we’re going to be very successful and balanced on offense. We will continue to run the ball, but we can balance that to keep defenses on their toes.”
Hastings said he is satisfied with the team’s early preparations.
“With a young team, it’s not set who is going to play where,” he said. “A lot of kids got the chance to show us what they can do.”
“Last year, our freshman and junior varsity teams both won Western League,” Hastings said. “Our kids expect to be successful, and when you believe that and work hard, good things are going to happen.”
Hastings recognizes his program’s status and excellent reputation.
“We love the fact we’ve built the program to this level, but we never take it for granted,” he said.
The Pointers begin the season at home on Saturday, Sept. 4 when they host Orange Glen at 3 p.m.
2010 PLHS FOOTBALL SCHEDULE • Sept 4,3 p.m. vs. Orange Glen @Point Loma
• Sept. 11, 6:30 p.m. vs. Patrick Henry @Patrick Henry
• Sept. 17, 7 p.m. vs. El Capitan @El Capitan
• Sept. 24, 3 p.m. vs. Scripps Ranch @Point Loma
• Oct. 1, 3 p.m. vs. Steele Canyon @Point Loma
• Oct. 8 BYE
• Oct. 15, 6:30 p.m. vs. La Jolla* @La Jolla
• Oct. 22, 3 p.m. vs. Mission Bay* @Mission Bay
Oct. 29, 6:30 p.m. vs. Madison* @Point Loma (H)
• Nov. 5, 6:30 p.m. vs. Serra* @Serra
• Nov. 12, 2:30 p.m. vs. Hoover* @Point Loma
* — Western League game (H — Homecoming PLHS VARSITY FOOTBALL ROSTER Seniors:
Jon Denae Bailey