Tofi PaoPao eyes third consecutive Division II Section Championship berth
One word seemingly describes Tofi PaoPao — winner.
three seasons directing the Oceanside Pirates offense, the senior has
tallied a 30-7-1 record, claimed a Division II Section Championship,
five playoff victories, two championship appearances, 10 league
victories, an Avocado West League title and secured three first-round
Oh, and the two-time All-Leaguer has thrown for 6,329 yards and 50 touchdowns in his career thus far.
PaoPao isn’t quite finished, though.
the quarterback guides Oceanside (10-1) against regular season section
passing leader Ramsey Romano and the Valhalla Norsemen (9-3) in the
Division II Semifinals. The winner is awarded a berth to play either
Helix or Poway for the championship.
at the end of the season at quarterback, if they’re healthy, you have
to assume they will be better than they were in week 1. That’s just the
experience factor,” Oceanside coach John Carroll said.
Tofi has as much experience as any quarterback can possibly have at
this point because he’s been here before. This is his third year of
starting and third consecutive semifinals appearance.”
year, PaoPao completed only 5-of-16 passes for 54 yards in a semifinals
27-7 victory over La Costa Canyon. The most important stat, however,
came in the turnover column. He made zero mistakes.
This year, with an expanded role and veteran savvy, expect more.
“You approach every game, whether playoffs or not, like it’s the same game. Every game we play is huge,” PaoPao said.
if we win, we go to the championship, but if you dwell on that too
much, you place a great deal more pressure on your shoulders than you
need. No matter if it’s the first game of the season or the last game,
it’s the same game.”
describes PaoPao as the “true field general”, who has complete command
of the offense. While that can be said for any quarterback in the San
Diego section, the difference between him and those other field generals
lies in the responsibilities.
PaoPao has full autonomy in operating the offense.
any quarterback who plays the game at the high school level, Tofi makes
pre-snap reads, redirects coverage, protections, routes and changes
plays at the line of scrimmage for us,” Carroll said.
“That’s unique at the college level, so that’s completely unique at the high school level.”
thirteen games, he threw for 1746 yards, nine touchdowns and five picks
in 2011. Through 11 games this year — seven of those games routes,
which Carroll rested his starters in the fourth quarters — PaoPao
compiled 2,196 yards, 21 touchdowns and just five interceptions
look at me as a leader. Since sophomore year, I haven’t really had that
role because of the experienced guys on the team then,” PaoPao said.
now, it falls on my shoulders. That means putting in the work to be
better. I would come here at 5 o’ clock in the morning, before school
starts, to work on my craft, work on my footwork to improve.”