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September 29, 2010

Section Sports Stars of Week Three

Mater Dei wide receiver Victor Blackwell is the Section Sports Athlete of the Week for Coastal Southern California. The 6-foot-1 USC commit caught six passes for 183 yards in the Monarchs' 42-14 win over San Clemente, scoring two touchdowns.

Blackwell opened the game with a 74-yard kickoff return but the Monarchs failed to score on that drive. He caught a 48-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter to give Mater Dei a 28-7 lead and scored the game's final touchdown via a 15-yard catch in the fourth quarter.

The big win may mark a turnaround for Mater Dei, which lost its first two games. They will need all the momentum they can get going into Friday's game against Huntington Beach Edison. The public vs. private matchup is always thrilling but the Chargers have won the last two games.

Northern California

Pleasant Grove running back Mark Jenkins is the Section Sports Athlete of the Week for Northern California. The 5-foot-9, 170-pound junior rushed for 298 yards and eight touchdowns in the Eagles' 55-35 win at Roseville.

The high-scoring game went back and forth early on; Jenkins opened the scoring with a three-yard run in the first quarter but the Tigers took a 21-14 lead into halftime. Jenkins scored two short touchdowns in the third quarter to help the Eagles take the lead, then exploded for four touchdowns in the final period, including a 50-yard run.

Jenkins has rushed for 931 yards and 17 touchdowns through the Eagles' first five games. Friday's was the third 200-yard game of Jenkins' career. He logged 225 yards against Fairfield earlier this season and 231 yards in a win over Jesuit last year. He rushed for 481 yards and seven touchdowns in 2009.

The Eagles moved to 5-0 on the season with the win, marking the best start in the program's history. It was also the Eagles' third consecutive win over Roseville, whom they play annually.
Jenkins and his teammates have a bye this week before opening Delta River League play against Ponderosa on Oct. 8. The Eagles' league slate includes tough matchups against Folsom and Oak Ridge.

Inland Southern California

Valencia running back Steven Manfro scored a mere four touchdowns in the Vikings' 45-7 rout of Palmdale. While that may not compare to the total that Jenkins put up, it was good enough for Manfro to be named the Section Sports Athlete of the Week for Inland Southern California.

The most impressive thing about Manfro's performance is the versatility he displayed. The 5-foot-10, 190-pound senior returned the game's opening kickoff 93 yards for a touchdown. He followed that up with a short rushing touchdown and a 58-yard touchdown reception in the second quarter that gave the Vikings a 31-0 halftime lead. A 47-yard touchdown run early in the third quarter put the game away.

The Falcons have won eight consecutive Golden League titles and crushed Valencia's Foothill League rival Hart 42-7 in Week 1, but they had no answer for Manfro. He finished the night with 153 rushing yards and 127 receiving yards as Valencia moved to 3-0 on the year. The Vikings continue their non-league slate on the road against Santa Monica on Friday.

Small Schools

Faith Baptist of Canoga Park triumphed over Joshua Springs in a battle between two of California's top eight-man football teams, due in large part to the efforts of quarterback Matt Rasmussen. Rasmussen, the Section Sports Small Schools Athlete of the Week, passed for 171 yards and two touchdowns in the Contenders' 28-18 win. He added 109 yards rushing as the three-time Division I finalists made the most of their 300-mile round trip to Yucca Valley.

Follow Sectionsports and Dylan Boggs on Twitter!

Nominate a player for Section Sports Athlete of the Week by emailing dylan@sectionsports.info by 11 a.m. each Monday.


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