Golden Gate sets sights on playoffs

Golden Gate sets sights on playoffs

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Golden Gate sets sights on playoffs

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Golden Gate wide receiver Patrick Volcy runs a play during a 7-on-7 game last month at Golden Gate High School.

Golden Gate wide receiver Patrick Volcy runs a play during a 7-on-7 game last month at Golden Gate High School.

Mike DiGrigoli’s first two years at Golden Gate produced the first two postseason appearances in school history. He guided the team to back-to-back six-win seasons the last two years, but the Titans were shut out of the state playoffs by finishing third in a three-team district.

With a speedy, talented defense and an improving offense, Golden Gate will look to take the next step in its quest to become a team to beat in Collier County.

“At this point in the program, it’s time to turn the corner and be a consistent playoff team,” DiGrigoli said. “We’ve gotten some stability in the program. We’re able to break the .500 mark, we’ve been in the playoffs. That’s the process and in this point in the process we want to be able to get into the playoffs and be competitive.”

Offense: Former Immokalee head coach Rich Dombroski was brought as offensive coordinator in to open up the Titans spread offense, which averaged 26 points per game in 2014. However, the passing game managed less than 100 yards a game.

Dombroski has plenty of weapons to work with in the receiving core, including 6-foot-4, 285-pound Patrick Volcy, who holds seven Division-I offers. Senior John Dorilus will play opposite Volcy while Tommie Butler, Vladimyr Bouzi and Rayomond Escalera add depth to the position.

Big 15: Golden Gate WR Patrick Volcy not afraid to block

The question marks are at quarterback and on the offensive line.

Golden Gate will need to replace graduated quarterback Jorquel Condomina, who amassed close to 1,300 yards through the air and with his feet. DiGrigoli said traditional pocket passers Ross Zepeda and Naples High transfer Mike Filmore will compete with athletes Nico Schuler and Chris Nazaire for the starting job.

Senior Chris Moricette is the only returning starter on the line. Diego Coronado, Eler Cabrera and Dante Roberts saw significant time on junior varsity last season.

A mix of scatbacks and power runners make up the backfield, which includes Roos Eliodor, Kenow Jacques and Madelain Fortunat.

Defense: DiGrigoli will need his attack-style defense to be at the top of its game early while the offense matures.

The unit is led by a strong group of linebackers highlighted by its leading tackler from a year ago, junior Beautismyth Legrand. He is joined on the second level by Kyle Brady and Claudin Cherrelus.

On the defensive line, 6-foot-4, 230-pound Octavien Peterson, who has three Division-I offers, could create problems on the edge along with fellow defensive end Oscar Shadley.

Meanwhile, junior safety Kelly Dorestil, who had two interceptions last year, brings experience to the secondary.

Golden Gate works out the kinks at 7-on-7

Outlook: After moving up in classification, the Titans appear to be the favorite to grab their district’s second playoff spot behind perennial powerhouse Naples.

The offense will have eight games to hit its stride before crucial back-to-back district tilts at Barron Collier and at home against Palmetto Ridge.

Golden Gate

Coach: Mike DiGrigoli

District: 6A-12

Returning starters offense: 2

Returning starters defense: 4

Key losses: Jorquel Condomina (QB), Isaiah D’haiti (RB), Jesse Zimmerman (DB)

Players to watch: Patrick Volcy (Sr., WR/DB), Peterson Octavien (Sr., DE), John Dorilus (Sr., WR/DB), Claudin Cherrelus (Jr. LB), Beautismyth Legrand (Jr., LB)

Coach’s quote: “This team needs to come together and endure the tough times. It’s how a team a team responds to those tough times that puts it in a position to have more good time.”

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