The 1953 Willows High School football team will be honored at the 49th annual Northern California Sports Association Hall of Fame Awards/Scholarship Dinner. 

It will be inducted into the Northern California Sports Association Hall of Fame during the dinner. The Willows High School football team won 36 consecutive games during the 1951, ’52 and ’53 seasons – players were from the classes of 1953 and ’54. 

According to a media release, Coach Carl Hoberg said before the last game, winning this one meant they will have gone through school undefeated and would remember this for the rest of their lives.

“The longest football winning streak for high schools in the North Section has held up for 63 years,” according to the release. 

The Willows Honkers averaged 28.8 points per game during the streak, while holding opponents to 7.3 points per game. 

The closest game during the streak was the 27th game when the Honkers defeated Gridley 7-6.

Players on the Honkers’ team included Bob Buch, Mel Boggan, Morris Biggs, Bill Kenney, Leonard Lambert, Bernard (Crunch) Taylor, Bill Hopper and Jim Staggs.

Those who were on the team, but are deceased include Douglas Chin, Ralph Falor, John Furtado, Nick (Stewart) Hinkle, Ron Kemp, Ed Owen, Bobby Ponciano, Vic Scalvini, Homer Sears and Dave Singleton.

Honors and awards:

The 1951 team – three players were named to the All-Westside League first team while two players were named to the second team. 

1952 team – Five players were named All-League first team members, one was the league MVP and one was All-League second team. 

Others who will be honored will be Doug Atkinson, Ralph Hendrix, Dave Humphers, Lou LeDuc, Mike Lynch, Kim (Morton) McDougal, Tony Martello, John R. Smith and Hannie Voyles. 

The event will feature a raffle fundraiser, silent auction, no-host bar and buffet dinner at the Veterans Memorial Hall Community Building, 1425 Veterans Memorial Circle, Yuba City. 

A cocktail reception will begin at 4:30 p.m. and tri-tip dinner and program will be at 5:30 p.m. on March 16.

Tickets cost $35 per person and proceeds go to scholarships announced at the dinner – six graduating high school students will receive $2,500 each at the dinner.

For ticket information, call Joel Guthrie at 329-5851; or John Rice at 916-296-1501 or email ricejohna@comcast.net.

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