From one program to the next, recent transfer Zack Chevalier brings a new-found confidence to the Golden Valley Football team. With an uncanny ability to avoid blitzes and sacks, Chevalier can make plays with his feet as well as his arm, which helped him earn his well-deserved spot as starting quarterback.
According to Coach Dan Kelly, Chevalier is a student of the game and has strong leadership skills which are important to successfully play in his position. His eagerness to learn and to get better every day makes him easy to coach.
Despite living in Santa Clarita his whole life, Chevalier attended Village Christian School until his junior year when Village shut down the football program for the 2017 season due to money issues. After seeing how far the Golden Valley team excelled last season, making it to the semifinals of the Division 7 playoffs, he knew it would be a mistake to not join the team.
Unfortunately, he missed spring ball and did not attend summer practices until the end of July because of his late transition. This put him behind compared to the other quarterbacks, but he took this as motivation to work extra hard in learning the new system and playbook.
Through the tight brothership of the team, he was able to show off old skills as well as develop new ones. Chevalier brings forth his natural strength of improvising plays out on the field, when necessary.
In the five non-conference games, he has a total of 719 passing yards, along with four touchdowns. With league play starting this week, Chevalier has been improving every day at practice and strives to raise those numbers exponentially.
The Foothill League is more competitive and it inspires him to continue to develop mentally and physically as a quarterback to become the best in league.
When asked what he was looking forward to the most for this season, his response was, “The biggest thing is because Village is such a small school, a school like this has more talent and a higher level of football. I enjoyed playing at both schools, but this is more of the level I like playing at with better competition in the Foothill league.”
While striving for his personal goals, he also has goals for the team as a whole.
“As a team, we need to make sure we start every game fast. We need to score first and allow our defense to do its job,” he added.
In blow-out games starters traditionally don’t play the entire game allowing back-up players to get some valuable experience.
“No matter who’s on the field we have to play a full four quarters of football,” said Chevalier.
In order to achieve this, he must use his position as quarterback and his strong leadership skills to unite the team. Coach Kelly believes this is possible because of how well he works with both the coaches and the rest of the players.
“It was cool to finally be able have confidence in yourself and know you get to play full games, just make mistakes and learn from them. Be the guy for the team,” said Chevalier.
For his first year on varsity, it was an honor to be named starting quarterback. Chevalier’s positive outlook assists him in learning from both good and bad plays; this keeps his motivation up.
Keep an eye out for Chevalier as he tries to help this team improve on their semifinal berth from last year. With his desire to improve both his team and individual performance, there’s no reason this team can’t play deep into November and possibly hoist a trophy.