Oceanside, Ca – If you’re not familiar with the Oceanside Pirates football program, you either don’t follow high school football or have not lived in San Diego that long? And if you’re a Pirate fan – you may have lost all sense of hope after their dismal 2022 season (0-10) – for this once dominant San Diego football program.
After all, this is a program synonymous with longevity and success with an astonishing 17 CIF Section and 2 State Championships. With the first two titles won by the late legendary Herb Meyers, it was not until 1989 when Pirate great, head coach John Carroll, began his takeover of San Diego football. For 26 seasons, he produced numerous Division-1 and NFL players and collected 13 of the 17 championships and both State titles during his legacy.
As Coach Carroll walked off into the sunset in 2015, the Pirate program stepped into the David Rodriquez era. With heavy expectations and scrutiny from the Pirate faithful, Coach Rod earned 2 CIF Championships during his solid 8 season tenure. And with a disappointing 0-10 record during the recent 2022 season, the Pirate community placed the call to start the process to search for their new commander.
During the early months of 2023 with over 70 enthusiastic applicants – many from out of the county and state – the Pirates decided to reunite hometown hero Fale Poumele to his storied alma mater once again – and he is not looking back.
The young Oceanside Pirate legend has established his credits as a player and coach. As a player, Poumele was a prominent force on Coach Carroll’s 1999 and 97 Pirate CIF Championship teams – and a four-year running back at San Diego State. With a recent position as a running back coach for Palomar College, Poumele’s development as a coach also includes tenures at San Marcos, El Camino, and Oceanside.
And to say that there was a major shift in the culture of Pirates football – may be more than a simple understatement. With the entrance of new head coach Fale Poumele, the foundation of discipline and a winning mindset has been implemented since day-1. “The goal is to win and help prove that these kids belong in the history books with the best of previous Pirate teams that won league championships and CIF championships,” noted Poumele.
It starts with the new daily Pirate schedule, which includes the early morning strength and discipline building “Breakfast Club” and study hall. “We started our breakfast club workouts. It’s an opportunity for our team to grind together, create strong bonds and relationships with one another and know that this brotherhood will last a lifetime, said Poumele. We also implemented our study hall after breakfast club workouts, to help our kids prepare for school that day, by finishing any last minute assignments or helping them with any subjects that they are struggling with.”
The Pirates enter their new home in the Valley League with a new coaching staff that includes a who’s who of Oceanside football featuring former Pirate legends Jacob Mageo, Josh Bernard, Se’e Poumele, Darrius Pickett, Absolom Fesili, Christian Cronk and Anthony “Ant” Mount.
With 9 returning starters, they also have some potential highlight film makers in the mix. Starting with top signal caller Andrew Miller, who is a 6’1,170 Lb scholar in the classroom ( 4.0 GPA ) and warrior on the gridiron. He continues to improve with his skill set and knowledge of the playbook and works to be one of the top quarterbacks in the Valley League in 2023.
Pirates have a handful of skilled athletes on the offensive side of the ball, beginning with senior standout running back and team leader Georgie Nua. “He got hurt last year and lost his Jr. season, but has been working extremely hard to get back. Moves well, has great vision and balance and can score from anywhere on the field,” said Poumele.
Receiver Isaac Hernandez, who saw the field plenty in 2022, will have the opportunity to expand upon his solid 21 reception season. As well, Joseph Vinup and two underclassmen stars in the making that both recently received offers from Washington State, Ayden Goodwin and Kymanu Nua, will have opportunities to spread the offense.
The wall in the trenches will be led by Division-1 level player OT David Porotesano (6’5 275 Lb). After suffering a season ending injury last season, the quick footed prototypical tackle will help open up the offense for the Pirates in 2023.
On the defensive side of the ball, the defensive line will be its main force in preventing yards and TDs from the opposition. “Our strongest group! This group is loaded with size, speed and strength,” said Poumele. Creating pressure on opposing quarterbacks and stopping the run is in no better hands, led by David Porotesano, along with Julian Amador, Aaron Loaiza, Omar Bello and Geordan Beamon who garnered 53 tackles last season.
The linebacking core and defensive backfield will include linebacker Esias Juarez, safety Carter Pettorini and two-way stalwarts Georgie Nua at linebacker, and Ayden Goodwin and Kymanu Nua covering the defensive backfield.
With the Pirate football community, it is more than the game of football. It is a way of life – with a priority that Fale Poumele has refocused as the new head coach of the Oceanside Pirates – and it is simple: “ To not only make them great student athletes but to be great men of society.”
If you want to watch the Oceanside Pirates as they start their new journey in the Valley League, they will open up their season at home with a non-conference match up Aug.18 against Santa Fe Christian High School.