The top teams in Northeastern Arizona high school football all notched wins in the first round of Division IV and V AIA playoffs. The next round match-ups should provide for some entertaining football.
In Division IV contests most of the top seeded teams moved on easily. However, there were some upsets.
Top seeded Blue Ridge made quick work in dispatching #16 Globe, 57-7. The Yellow Jackets had eight different players score TD’s with two TD’s coming from the defensive side of the ball and Ben Watson returning two punts for TD’s. The Jackets will face #9 River Valley in the next round at 7 p.m., this Saturday at Washington High School in Phoenix. River Valley thrashed #8 Monument Valley 58-6.
The #2 Show Low Cougars put their first playoff win of the season on the board as they topped #15 Fountain Hills in Show Low 42 – 25. The contest was one marked by big plays. Show Low’s big plays came from Cody Tenney and Colby Maxwell. The Cougar tandem hooked up for two TD’s as Maxwell delivered a 48-yard pass followed by a 12-yard pass to Tenney. Tenney then added a 21-yard run for good measure. Fellow Cougars Bret Van Winkle and Brice Rova cracked off TD runs of 80 and 60 yards respectively.
Fountain Hills had big plays too as Justin Steuber connected for 55 yards with Andrew Caprichio and Taylor Tackett for 29 yards.
Second seeded Show Low will face off against #10 Buckeye, who upset #7 Winslow 28 – 7. That battle will take place Saturday at Apollo High School in Glendale with a 7 p.m. coin toss.
Fourth seeded Snowflake, who has only lost to Blue Ridge and Show Low, ran rough shod over the #13 Payson Longhorns, 43-8. The Lobos were led by Chase Walden once again. Walden ran for four TD’s and passed for another to lead Snowflake to their next round matchup with #12 Empire. Empire knocked off #5 Estrella Foothills 28-21. The Snowflake vs. Empire matchup, to be played at Washington High School in Phoenix, will be one of the must see playoff contests Saturday starting at 3 p.m.
In other Division IV playoff football it was #3 Seton Catholic rolling over #14 Chinle 61 -0. Seton will take on #6 Mingus who barely got by #11 Coolidge 17-14. The Seton-Mingus game will kick off 3 p.m. at Apollo too.
Division V playoff action only saw St Johns move on from the White Mountain region. The Redskins got by a pesky Phoenix Christian team 49-27 in Phoenix. St Johns will tackle top ranked Northwest Christian Saturday at 7 p.m. Northwest Christian stomped Red Rock 36-7.
The Round Valley Elks season came to an end Friday night in Tempe as they fell to Tempe Prep 14-0. Round Valley finishes the season with a 4-7 overall record. Tempe Prep will square off against Thatcher Saturday at 3 p.m. Thatcher easily got by Benson 48-21.
Other Division V action saw Yuma Catholic dispatch Willcox 47-8 as they prepare to meet Scottsdale Christian who blanked Pinon 55-0. The contest will commence at 7 p.m. Saturday. Morenci and Arizona Lutheran Academy will play in the remaining Division V playoff game Saturday at 7 p.m. Morenci got by Bourgade Catholic 53-29 and Arizona Lutheran took down Williams 49-28.
The Division VI title game is set for this Saturday at Sunnyslope High School in Phoenix. With game time at 6 p.m. football fans will watch an exciting 8-man contest. For the first time in over a decade neither Joseph City nor Mogollon will be in the title game as Glendale Joy Christian will take on Pima.
There are few things that are as exciting as Arizona High School Football playoffs. Get out and watch a game and support Arizona High School Sports.