Barnes is on a mission

Gilroy runningback Joe Barnes takes a handoff from quarterback Jon Jon Castro during practice. Barnes will be the tip of the spear for Gilroy in the 2017 season.

Running back Joseph Barnes was left with a bitter taste after losing to Soledad in last year’s CCS semis game by a single point.
“I have high expectations from my team, especially the outcome last year,” Barnes said. “I just want to grow on from last year and do better than last year.”
Barnes rushed for 1,633 yards last season averaging over 130 per game and scored 26 touchdowns, according to his Maxpreps stats.
Barnes, a multi-sport athlete, hopes the skills obtained last year on the Mustangs’ CCS football run and as a wrestler, where he reached the state finals, can help him lead the team on another CCS run.
Barnes believes wrestling helped him become a better leader and gave him more body control and balance, which will make it harder for the opponents to bring him down on the field.
“It would probably take a couple of guys to take me down because of wrestling, because my good balance and awareness of my feet and body weight,” Barnes said.
In addition to physical skills, Barnes said that the most important thing that helps him be successful in both sports is his poise under pressure. He tries to stay calm if things don’t go his way and have a short-term memory in order to move on to what’s next.
Barnes has also been able to take advantage of the skills he displays on the football field and transfer them to the mat.
“I feel like since we hit so much in football and we become more mean throughout the year, aggression builds up a lot so I bring it into the mat and my opponent,” Barnes said.
When you add a more mature, skilled, and motivated Barnes into a team which only lost a few senior players, you get a confident team that knows it is within their reach to surpass last season.
In order to do that, Barnes needs to display all of the skills he learned last season, which he said include being a better leader, to help Gilroy get back to CCS.
Barnes also knows he can’t do it alone and feels the team has more offensive weapons that will help the Mustangs win games.
“We have a full team and then we have more than three weapons on the field that will score and have a high potential to score,” Barnes said. “We can go anywhere from running, passing. We have more than two weapons on each.”