As a sophomore, Dylan Crawford wasn’t afraid to showcase his talents against opponents a year or two older than him.
The St. Francis High football player seemed to fit in comfortably with the Golden Knights, who instantly made the wide receiver one of their primary targets each week. In helping St. Francis go 10-3, 3-2 in the ultra-competitive Mission League this season, Crawford caught 54 passes for 993 yards and 10 touchdowns to play a vital role in the Golden Knights advancing to the CIF Southern Section Western Division semifinals.
For his solid work, Crawford was among those named to the Cal-Hi Sports.com all-state first-team team Thursday in the sophomore class.
Among the factors in considering a player ranged from receiving All-CIF and/or All-Area recognition to overall team success to statistics compiled to strength of schedule.
“It’s just a blessing and all of the hard work paid off throughout the year,” Crawford said. “It will help me get even more focused for next season.
“I had some great teammates and coaches who all believed in me and what I could do. It’s great to be in this with some great athletes from around the state.”
Crawford had earlier been named to the All-Area and all-league first teams following a sensational campaign.
The Golden Knights played arguably the toughest schedule in the area, including a pair of matchups with Gardena Serra. In addition, St. Francis played Chaminade, which won a CIF and state championship, Monrovia, Culver City and Camarillo. St. Francis, which finished third in league behind Serra and Chaminade, posted playoff victories against Culver City and fourth-seeded Camarillo before falling to top-seeded Serra in the semifinals.
Crawford, who had three 100-yard receiving games, credited senior quarterback Ty Gangi, the reigning All-Area Football Player of the Year, for a seamless transition.
“Ty gave me the ball by making some great passes throughout the season,” Crawford said. “I wanted to be able to compete each week.”