SLO County football players start car detailing business to save money for college

The Bronco football team is eager to launch the season and keep Coast Union High School’s winning tradition alive following three straight nine-win seasons.

The opening game is Thursday, Aug. 31 at home in Cambria versus Riverdale.

As the Broncos gear up for another successful season under head coach Andrew Crosby, two senior players — center Adair Ponce and running back Alex De Alba — are also aiming for business success.

They have launched a mobile car detailing business in Cambria.

After purchasing a pressure washer, a vacuum and a deep-cleaning extractor in early August, the players — both Bronco team captains — washed and detailed their first car, one owned by Sue Atkinson Robinson.

“They did a fantastic job,” Robinson wrote in a Facebook post. “They did such a thorough job that they were able to locate the hearing aid my husband lost a month or so ago.”

Bronco football players Alex De Alba, left, and Adair Ponce have launched an auto detailing service to save money for college.
Bronco football players Alex De Alba, left, and Adair Ponce have launched an auto detailing service to save money for college.

The Robinsons had “torn the car apart and could not find that hearing aid, but Adair and Alex did!” she said.

Now, Sue Atkinson Robinson added, “The car sparkles.”

Robinson described De Alba and Ponce as “two hard-working, pleasant kids.”

“I would definitely recommend them to anyone looking to have their car detailed,” she said.

The student athletes are looking forward to life after high school, Ponce said.

“Most of the money will go towards savings for college, for books and tuition,” he said, as well as “a car that’s a little more efficient on gas.”

Currently Ponce is driving a Toyota Sequoia SUV.

The vehicle is “a little too big for me and it uses a lot of gas,” he said.

Besides detailing cars, attending classes and playing football, Ponce is president of Interact, a Rotary Club of Cambria program.

Students volunteer to promote fundraising projects and donate the proceeds to worthy nonprofit groups.

The senior football player, who was Defensive Most Valuable Bronco and all-league first team on defense last year, isn’t certain where he will attend college.

He’s hoping for Cal Poly, and plans to study aerospace engineering.

“Poly is close to home and it specializes in engineering and hands-on learning, something I really like,” Ponce said.

“Ever since I was little I was interested in theoretical physics, machines and building things,” Ponce said, “and as I got older I learned to love everything about space.”

De Alba plans to attend Cuesta College for two years via the Cuesta College Promise program, which offers free enrollment to local high school graduates.

Following two years at Cuesta, De Alba plans to finish his degree at a four-year university.

Bronco home scrimmage

Coast Union’s offensive performed “very well” with “good execution” in their home scrimmage against San Luis Obispo Classical Academy and Frazier Mountain on Aug. 19, according to offensive coordinator Charlie Casale.

Tony De Alba, Alex’s brother, “was flawless at quarterback and our running backs (Manny Mercado and Alex De Alba) had great performances,” Casale said.

The offensive line – featuring Ponce at center – “was consistent with their blocking assignments,” Casale added. “Overall, a plus for offensive.”