Gonzalez brothers drive Card's offense

By Andrea Camarena

Something is driving brothers Johnny and Anthony Gonzalez into the endzone over and over again.

Perhaps it's Anthony's 405 yards of rushing in five games.

Maybe it's Johnny's 237 yards receiving on the same ticket. Or could it be inspiration?

The two aren't the only family members gracing the field at Frank Skaddan Stadium. Number 11 for the Cardinals might be someone to look up to. In the eyes of the Gonzalez brothers their younger uncle, John Black is someone they can respect.

"He's our inspiration for playing football," Johnny put it simply. Black suffered from childhood illness that led to surgery in infancy. He is now a healthy varsity athlete.

Perhaps modeling themselves after Black is what has gotten Johnny and Anthony into the endzone for a combined total of 12 touchdowns by the midpoint of the season.

The brothers' scoring record is not going unnoticed. After watching his brother complete three touchdowns in McFarland, little brother Anthony followed suit and put three away when the Cardinals hosted the Corcoran Panthers on Oct. 8. After moving the ball 132 yards for three touchdowns, the LHS athletic department named Anthony the Cardinal of the Week.

For Johnny, the final ESL game against Immanuel on Nov. 11 will be his last football game. The three-year starting receiver has the highest scoring record for the Cardinals with seven touchdowns in five games. But the stand-out senior plans to focus his post high school athletic life on a different sport. Johnny plans on attending Bakersfield Community College for two years and hopes to make his way on to the basketball team. He would then like to transfer to a Division I or Division II college where he can continue playing at a higher level.

Junior Anthony still has one more season of football ahead of him but his eyes are already set on Fresno State and like his brother, he dreams of playing collegiate basketball

But for now, the two are focused on finding a few more wins for the Cardinals before Johnny completes this final season.

After last week's loss to Orosi, the Cardinal's season record stands at a disappointing 2-4.

"We have a good team. We have a lot of talent. But we just don't have the players. We are all tired by the fourth quarter because we all go both ways," said Johnny.

Anthony and Johnny both agree, that despite the record, Cardinal football has been something to enjoy this season.

"The coaching staff is great. They aren't too hard on us, so it's like having another player out there. Just like a team leader," said Anthony about about Dieterle and his staff.

Next year, though, will be Anthony's first year playing for the Cardinals without his brother by his side.

It will also mean he will be the oldest Gonzalez in the household. Currently both brothers participate in tutoring local 3-6 year-olds in Spanish including the younger Gonzalez siblings. They participate in the tutoring program because they find the importance in learning another language at a young age. Their other interests outside of football include video games and playing the guitar.

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