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PAIGE A. LEECH

Molock Prepares for New Start

July 10, 1998|PAIGE A. LEECH

Recalling his injury-riddled junior season is all running back Bruce Molock of Antelope Valley High needs for motivation.

"Watching my team and not being able to help out was terrible," said Molock, who missed most of seven games last season because of an ankle injury.

Molock, a powerful 5-foot-10, 190-pound tailback, is a model of determination and perseverance, Antelope Valley Coach Brent Newcomb says.

"He works hard, practices hard," Newcomb said. "He's a good kid."

After earning a starting spot last season, Molock barely made it out of the starting gate. He injured his ankle against Barstow in the Antelopes' second game.

Although he never regained form, he returned in the playoffs to rush for 316 yards in three games, helping the Antelopes reach the Southern Section Division II semifinals.

Molock, who said he squats 425 pounds, said he has recovered from his injury and, through weight lifting, has improved his strength and speed.

"If he gets in the open, there's not many who are going to catch him," Newcomb said. "And he's one of those guys who is tough to bring down."

Because Molock is one of three talented running backs on the team, there has been talk that Antelope Valley might switch to a wishbone attack next season.

"Well, we're just kidding about that," Newcomb said.

But Newcomb isn't kidding about the abilities of his running backs. Although Molock tops the depth chart, juniors Jermaine Norman and Jermaine Marshall aren't far behind.

Norman, 5-9 and 200 pounds, is a big-play back who also plays linebacker.

"You always tell your kids there are about four plays that make the difference in a game," Newcomb said. "And [Norman] had four plays that made the difference in our season."

Marshall could make a difference as well, if he remains eligible.

Marshall attended Antelope Valley as a freshman, got into trouble and was placed at Kilpatrick--a high school in Malibu for juvenile offenders--for his sophomore year.

He's back at Antelope Valley and hopes to stay in the football team's plans.

"He's paid his dues, I guess," Newcomb said. "We just hope he's learned his lesson."

Marshall, 5-9 and 192 pounds, rushed for 1,405 yards and 17 touchdowns for Kilpatrick last season.

*

Running back isn't the only talent-laden position at Antelope Valley.

Returning defensive backs Ronnell Tyars and Chasio Gaines are small at 5-8 and 155 pounds, but they make up for it with speed.

"We're the smallest team in the [Golden League] and we don't have the numbers--same as always," Newcomb said. "But I have to admit, we definitely have some team speed on the perimeter."

*

Evan Rosenblum of Calabasas is perhaps the best wide receiver you've never heard of.

Despite his anonymity, he led the region last year for most catches . . . without a touchdown.

Thirty one passes ended up in Rosenblum's hands, but he never ended up in the end zone.

"Basically the story on that is we would get into [scoring] position and every time have [running back] Robby [Coppola] pound it in," Rosenblum said.

With Coppola having graduated--and the passing game showing great promise--Calabasas will have a different look next season, Rosenblum predicts.

Dallas Enoch, who completed 82 of 160 passes for 1,392 yards and nine touchdowns last season, has three experienced receivers, Rosenblum, Matt Lowenstein and John Shaff.

Enoch, a 6-4, 215-pound senior, and Rosenblum appear primed for big seasons after playing together for four years. Rosenblum has caught 20 touchdown passes in nine summer passing-league and tournament games.

"This year I'm prepared to be the leader and take charge," Rosenblum said.

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