West Hills College Coalinga offensive lineman Apefai "Junior" Taifane was voted to the 2017 All-America Community College Football Team and joined teammate punt retrurner Andreaz Spencer on the All-State team. The announcement came Friday by the California Community College Football Coaches Association and the JC Athletic Bureau.
Taifane was the only player from California's American Division (non-playoff tier) - among the 30 players on offense and defense - to be selected First Team All-American.
He saw limited action last season as a freshman tight end, and was converted by new head coach Justin Berna to help an inexperienced offensive line. Taifane started every game this season (mostly at center) for the 6-3 Falcons, and played all five positions up front.
Taifane (6-3, 290, Pago Pago,AS) has a 4.0 GPA and was honored with the WHCC Commitment to Excellence Award by his teammates.
He joins Spencer on the Region II All-California First Team. Spencer finished the season with a 28.0 punt return average (1 TD) and a 24.6 kick return average (1 TD) and a blocked kick on special teams. In his primary role as starting cornerback, Spencer finished the season with 21 tackles, one interception, one fumble recovery, and one sack.
Spencer (5-9, 155, Cottanlde, AL) was voted WHCC Special Teams Player of the Year by his Falcon teammates.
Both Taifance and Spencer earned 2017 All-Golden Coast League honors as well.
With 68 football teams, California has the majority of community college/junior college programs in the nation. There are only 65 teams outside of California.