Crusaders prepare for ‘complete’ Huskies team


Ray Hamill/

By Ray Hamill — You get the feeling there’s something special developing at Fortuna this spring.

A senior-heavy Huskies team has set the pace through the opening two weeks of the H-DNL football season and look like they could have been serious North Coast Section contenders but for the pamdemic.

“I feel bad for the Fortuna senior class,” said St. Bernard’s head coach Matt Tomlin, whose team travels to Fortuna on Friday night. “This is one of those dream teams they’ve built and I would really have liked to see them make a run in the playoffs. From that point, it’s kind of sad.”

The Huskies (2-0) still have plenty to play for this spring, including a potential unbeaten season and an unofficial Big 4 title.

They play their three conference rivals over the next three weeks, and Tomlin is expecting a battle.

“They’re very talented, they’re big, they’re fast, they’re strong and they’re very well coached,” the St. Bernard’s coach said. “It’s a complete team.”

A young Crusaders team that features just one starting senior is coming off a big win over the Fortuna B team last week and is now 1-1 on the season.

“We’re so young, and just happy to be playing football,” Tomlin said. “Our guys are putting in the work, but we know Fortuna’s got 17 seniors and we’ve got one senior. But my guys play with a lot of heart.”

The Huskies are led by a deep group of talented seniors, including quarterback Max Hough and receiver Branson Gans who combined for a pair of passing TDs in a big team win over Ferndale last weekend.

For the Crusaders to have any chance they will have to be disciplined.

“We definitely have to play assignment football,” Tomlin said. “Nobody can be a hero when you’re playing a veer option team.

“And we have to establish our running game. We feel that can open up our passing game.”

Game time is set for 7:30 p.m. and there will be no JV game.

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