Taking on the likes of the Thunder El Paso all-stars on Saturday in the Sun Bowl will be the El Paso Storm team.
The Storm is made up of a lot of playmakers that were drafted in this year’s unique showcase, where players were drafted to these respective teams. These players will get to showcase their talents throughout the all-star game and will have opportunities for scholarships by the Greater El Paso Showcase.
Here are the players to watch for on the Storm:
Andrew Fernandez – Montwood
Having the senior year anyone wishes to have on the gridiron, Andrew Fernandez emerged as the most elite quarterback in El Paso by leading his Montwood Rams to a district championship, a 10-2 overall record and a bi-district title. He finished his season with 3,664 passing yards, 53 passing touchdowns, 1,020 rushing yards and 13 rushing touchdowns.
Currently, Fernandez has only two offers—one from Army and the other from Fordham—but this quarterback should definitely be sought out for by the likes of UTEP or NMSU. Fernandez is a winner and he will likely do so at the college level.
AJ Briggs – Parkland
This year AJ Briggs broke the city record for passing yards in a single season, recording an impressive 4,077 yards. He was a key player in Parkland’s quest in the Texas State playoffs, where the team won the bi-district round and the area round.
With a running back as sharp as Dieon Hankins on the team, Briggs’ talents are often overshadowed. However, this man can sling the ball and score touchdowns, with 41 passing touchdowns under his belt this year.
Seth Dominguez – Franklin
In the midst of Franklin’s sub-par 4-6 season, missing out on the playoffs and losing to key district rivals, like Coronado, running back Seth Dominguez was truly a diamond for the team. Dominguez carried the ball 131 times this season and rushed for 1,341 yards. He also scored 11 total touchdowns for the Cougars. Dominguez is a special running back and would be a great asset at the next level for any team that needs some extra help with a hefty running back like him.
Matthew Zubiate – Chapin
Another body type like Dominguez, senior Matthew Zubiate has a big stature but can slice defenses with his speed. He finished his three years on varsity with 2,251 total rushing yards and was a big help for Chapin’s offense this season.
There were different instances where Chapin was down in a specific matchup and Zubiate helped get them out of a rut. This season he rushed for 846 yards with six rushing touchdowns. He also was a big help on the halfback screen play that Chapin loved to run with him.
Robert Minjarez – Eastwood
In Eastwood’s up and down season, their offense, no matter the score, always was ready and equipped with deep talent on offense. Wide receiver Robert Minjarez was just another weapon for the Troopers and he had great success with them.
He amassed 1197 receiving yards off 84 catches this year with 12 touchdowns to go along with it. He could also kill teams on the run, with his favorite play coming off the jet sweep.
Ivan Avina – Eastlake
Ivan Avina is an all-around athlete that uses speed to kill defenses as he catches the ball. He finished his senior season with 1,067 receiving yards off 62 catches and totaled nine touchdowns. Avina would also take some handoffs on Eastlake plays, which had him averaging nearly 150 total yards per game.
With Minjarez and Avina on either side receiving, this team could be showing speed scoring and effective pass completions.
Cameron Hill – El Dorado
While Avina and Minjarez will be the speedy receivers, Cameron Hill from El Dorado will be the target that either Fernandez or Briggs will love to toss the ball to. Hill helped the El Dorado offense with 68 catches for 1,065 receivng yards during his senior year. He averaged over 100 yards of receiving each game, with his best game coming against Coronado, where he had 178 yards of receiving and three touchdowns.
Diego Lewis – Andress
The 5-foot-9 multi-talented athlete of Diego Lewis shouldn’t even be an x-factor because of how great this man can play both offense and defense. It will be interesting to see how the Storm uses him offensively, and most likely they will be utilizing him in the slot and motioning him out.
Lewis helped a run-first offense whenever they decided to pass the ball. He had 403 yards off 24 receptions and four touchdowns this season.
Dietrich King – Pebble Hills
Starting each game for the Pebble Hills Spartans for two back-to-back seasons, Dietrich King is a powerhouse lineman that is hard hitting and strong. He helped his team finish at their program-best, 8-3 overall, and helped Pebble Hills average 206.7 rushing yards per game.
Gabriel Villa – Americas
Despite Americas struggling this season, defensive lineman Gabriel Villa kept their defense sound and poise through rough patches by his efforts and talents on the line. Through eight games he picked up 54 tackles on the year, sacked the quarterback six times and had four tackles for losses. This man is a headache for offensive linemen.
Rickie McCoy – El Dorado
Through El Dorado’s resurgence on defense this season, Rickie McCoy emerged himself into a prime defensive lineman. He was able to stop runs, halt quarterbacks and make plays in the backfield. The 6-foot-2 senior averaged 3.1 tackles per game and had four tackles for losses.
Patrick Hernandez – Bel Air
One of the most fun linebackers to watch in the city was Bel Air’s standout defender in Patrick Hernandez. He will be commanding the Storm’s defense with his 137 total tackles coming into this game. Hernandez led the city with 17.0 tackles for losses and also added six sacks this season. Throughout the season, Hernandez forced six fumbles for the Highlanders and was a definite threat to offenses.
Aaron Morales – Del Valle
Standing at just 5-foot-7, Aaron Morales of Del Valle should not be categorized by his features because this guy is a playmaker on defense. He makes open field tackles effectively and quarterbacks cannot pass in his direction due to his good pass defense. Morales has broken up eight passes this year and has 64 total tackles on the season.
Abram Perez – Montwood
Through Montwood’s district championship season, Abraham Perez played a sound role as a defensive back, making sure to not let anything get by him when given the chance. He finished the year with 39 total tackles, three pass deflections, a forced fumble and an interception this year.
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