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Experienced Mull to lead Eagle offense

By: Matt Long
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Two years ago as a sophomore Anthony Mull was thrown to the wolves as Vista del Lago’s quarterback of their first varsity football team. Last year he quarterbacked Vista’s team playing for the first time with a senior class. This year, the 6-foot, 2-inch senior is looking forward to a breakout season. His biggest strength is his experience and all that he’s learned the last two years. “It’s been a three-year process for Anthony,” Vista coach Chris Jones said. “When he started as a sophomore it was out of necessity rather than him being ready and he took his lumps and bruises and he’s better because of it. Last year as a junior he improved his arm strength and decision making and just grew physically. Now he’s bigger and stronger and understands what has to be done because he’s got so much game experience under his belt.” Mull said last year was OK, but he wasn’t happy with the way the season ended. “Last year went pretty well, but as a team we didn’t finish off the season the right way,” Mull said of the 5-5 season in which the team lost its last three games. “Coming into this year my goal was to just get bigger and stronger and study the game and I’ve put on almost 25 pounds.” Not only has Mull gotten bigger, but also his experience is seemingly beginning to payoff. His numbers last year included completing 44 percent of his passes for 1,587 yards and 13 touchdowns against eight interceptions. While the season hasn’t started yet, Mull did have a good summer. The Eagles won two 7-on-7 passing tournaments, one at Vacaville High School and the other at American River College. “My overall experience level helped me the most,” Mull said. “I’m learning something everyday. Our work ethic and our conditioning were important during those tournaments. We knew the plays and executed them.” Mull has more than just experience going for him and that’s his competitiveness. “I think one of Anthony’s strengths is his competitiveness,” Jones said. “I like guys who want to compete. The best quarterbacks I’ve been around, guys like Chandler Clemons and Shane Steichen at Oak Ridge, they had one thing in common and that’s that they were great competitors. Those guys wanted to win all the time and I love to see that in a quarterback. Anthony’s a talented kid and his competitiveness complements his skill set.” Mull’s top targets this season will be receivers Logan Smith, Caleb Gottschalk and Connor Valencia and tight end Alex McElroy. Jones was pleased with how they worked well together during the summer. “At the passing tournaments they did a good job executing and Anthony was the center of the whole thing,” Jones said. “He did a good job placing the ball where he wanted it.” Mull is looking forward to the season. His only individual goal is to get noticed by a college, as he wishes to play in college. As a team, Mull expects good things. “Our expectations are high,” Mull said. “We went from Division II to Division IV and we’re in a new league. We want to be the top team in the league and I think we’re capable of being that.”