In his first season, King City Mustangs’ Adrian Garcia had 28 receptions, 530 receiving yards, four interceptions and five touchdowns. (Contributed)

KING CITY — Last season King City High football player Adrian Garcia was a vital part of the offense, as he was second in receiving yards with 530, and going into his senior year he wants to help elevate his team during his last season.

Most of the time youth see their passion grow for a sport after years of growth and the brotherhood they built over time. For Garcia, his love for football came after one at the Junior Varsity level.

Not all the time do you find a player that enjoys getting hit, but for Garcia, that is what he enjoys about the game.

“I like getting hit and scoring touchdowns,” Garcia said. “Getting hit makes me feel alive.”

After just one year at JV, Garcia moved up to varsity to try to fill out the receiving core that had lost a lot of playmakers. In his first season, he had 28 receptions, 530 receiving yards, four interceptions and five touchdowns.

After his great season, Garcia was named to the first team of the Pacific Coast Athletic League Cypress Division for wide receiver and defensive back. But for as good as he was last season, he still found himself not satisfied.

“I did pretty well,” he said. “I think I could have done better. Last year I dropped a lot of passes in the backfield.”

Other than working construction with his dad during the offseason, Garcia has been lifting and working on his hands.

“I’m going to be forced on hand and get into the weight room to get bigger,” he said.

Another reason that Garcia is confident going into this season is because of the coaching staff. Not for their ability to coach players up, it’s because he knows that they have his best interest when it comes to doing the right thing off the field.

“They always ensure that we are students first,” he said. “They keep me accountable about my grades.”

With the Mustangs losing a couple of key players from last year’s team, Garcia is looking to fill a leadership role. He believes that he could help get the younger guys up to speed.

“My role this year, I want to be a team player,” he said. “I want to help the new players coming up to varsity and show them the standard at the varsity level.”

One way he would help be a leader is to support the new quarterback this year. This upcoming year the Mustangs will have a new quarterback after losing Jjey Martinez. For Garcia, he has confidence in whoever the next quarterback is.

“Right now, we have two good quarterbacks competing for the job,” he said. “Whoever wins the job, I trust them to get the job done.”

As the start of the new season gets closer, Garcia has earned the privilege of not being an unknown player that is not going to sneak up on teams. He has embraced the challenges and hopes his team can take that next step of improvement.

“I expect us to win more games than last year,” he said. “I believe our defense is going to be amazing.”

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Jason Gallardo is the sports reporter for King City Rustler and Salinas Valley Tribune, a unified publication of Greenfield News, Soledad Bee and Gonzales Tribune. He covers high school sports for South Monterey County.


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