Week four means forget what you know

Week four of the high school football season means that you have to forget what you think that you know. You may think that because Chandler took a lead into halftime against St. John Bosco, that they’d be highly competitive against Mountain Pointe. Last Friday, that didn’t hold true. You may also think that a Liberty High (Nevada) team that dropped it’s opener to Tucson Salpointe by a score of 48-7 would be no match for the mighty Hamilton Huskies. Also wrong.
Hamilton escaped a massive upset in Nevada with the same formula that helped them beat Pinnacle– keep the other team’s offense off the field. The Husky defense allowed 7 total yards on 10 plays, allowing RB Tyrell Smith to chew up yards, setting up a go-ahead 12 yard TD pass from Sam Sasso to David DeSilva. After the 14-10 win, Hamilton’s Coach Steve Belles addressed a sideline filled with starters and regular contributors in slings and on crutches- “In our current state, we’re going up against a team next week that is playing better than us, but we’re still Hamilton,” he said. The team he was speaking of is Mountain Pointe, who is now 5-0 after their 38-14 victory over Chandler.

Chandler had less than 200 yards of offense, and lost their second consecutive game by 20+ points when they hosted the Pride last Friday. Many are holding off alarm due to the quality of Chandler’s opponents, but the Wolves last 20 point loss in a regular season game was back in week 2 of 2009. Mountain Pointe seemed to rally around star RB/LB Wesley Payne after he dislocated his elbow, and rattled off 38 straight points. Bryce Perkins threw his first interception of the season and Chandler’s special teams had two punts blocked in the loss. The 2-2 Wolves will play 0-4 Cesar Chavez on the road this Friday.

Basha shocked quite a few onlookers when they dominated a talented Pinnacle team, winning 35-21. In Basha’s homecoming game, QB Zach Werlinger threw for 396 yards, with 20 catches and 304 yards shared between Juniors Doc O’Connor and Jared Schmidt. The victory was made even more impressive by standout RB Rajhan Meriwether’s absence due to injury. Meriwether hopes to return to 3-1 Basha for Friday’s matchup with 4-0 Avondale Westview.

Speaking of undefeated, Mesa Mountain View moved to 4-0 after crushing Perry 51-16. Perry’s penalty trouble continued, and the Toros capitalized by scoring 23 in the first quarter alone. Perry’s only touchdowns came as the result of an Austin Nightingale pass to Stanford commit Lane Veach, and later on a 75 yard Nightingale run. The 2-2 Pumas host 1-3 Glendale Mountain Ridge on Thursday night.

Seton Catholic’s 13 game winning streak may have just been snapped by snowflake, but the Sentinels got back on track at Cortez High, winning 47-13 and moving to 3-1. Junior WR George Wolter had a breakout game, catching 8 passes for 197 yards, and Niko Villegas returned two kickoffs for touchdowns in the win. Seton hosts 1-3 Coronado High this Friday.

Valley Christian was able to put a ton of points on the board against Chandler Prep, winning 63-0. The Trojans only completed 3 passes on the night, but all for touchdowns in the blowout, and scored 8 times overall despite running just 22 offensive plays. 6’5″ 230 lb do-everything senior T.J. Widner added two sacks to his season total of 5.5, had a touchdown reception, and upped his already impressive punt yard average to 44.82. The 2-2 Trojans travel to play 1-3 Tempe prep on Friday.

For the fourth straight week, C-Town teams have gone a combined 4-2. While most pundits are picking Mountain Pointe to get revenge for last year’s championship loss, the Huskies haven’t forgotten losing a heartbreaking regular season game in Ahwatukee to open last season. If Perry can handle business at home on Thursday, we’re predicting that this could be the first weekend that C-Town goes undefeated.