The 10th seeded Basha Bears managed to wear down the potent offense of the Horizon Huskies enough to squeeze out a 43-42 win. Horizon’s offense looked unstoppable, scoring 35 in the first half on Basha’s defense, the third most the Bears had allowed in any single game this year. Unfortunately for Horizon, their most talented offensive players like Luke Quinn and Spencer Marciniak play on defense as well, and used most of their energy trying to slow down Rajhan Meriwether. Meriwether’s 4 TD first half helped to tire out Horizon, and the Huskies were only able to muster one touchdown despite two Basha turnovers. Cade Thompson made up for a blocked extra point and missed FG earlier in the game by hitting a 27 yarder with a few seconds remaining to give the Bears a one point victory, putting Basha in line to face the winner of the Skyline/Chandler contest.
Chandler roughed up Skyline, 55-16, getting contributions from each of it’s offensive and defensive weapons along the way. Bryce Perkins ran for two touchdowns, and threw three more to Elijah Sykes, Dionte Sykes and Mitch McCulley. Chase Lucas scored a rushing touchdown, and J.R. Hunt forced a fumble that led to a Tony Nevarez defensive score. Chandler is on a seven game win streak, with an average margin of victory of 30 points since losing back-to-back contests against St John Bosco and Mountain Pointe. One of Chandler’s blowout victories was over Basha, whom they face at home this Friday to see who will meet the Pinnacle/Hamilton winner in the semifinals.
Hamilton continued it’s season long trend of defensive dominance, beating Millennium 35-9, and forcing 3 safeties in the process. The Huskies finished an odd first quarter tied with Millennium at 2-2, but a 63 yard punt return for a TD by Morris Kroma opened the floodgates. Hamilton would get rushing scores from Tyrell Smith and Jerrion Acles, as well as a TD pass from Sam Sasso to Elijah Williams on the way to a decisive win. MHS had a scary moment toward the end of the game when DB and team captain Aaron Diggs seemed to be knocked unconscious, and laid on the field for nearly 30 minutes before being taken away in an ambulance. Fortunately, Diggs had movement in his extremities, and was even able to join the team for breakfast on Saturday. Hamilton now readies for a rematch with 6th seeded Pinnacle, who they beat 24-20 in week 3 of the regular season.
Speaking of rematches, Seton Catholic began its Division IV playoff journey with a rematch against Combs, a team they blew out just 3 weeks ago. Same result this time, as Antonio Campanella had four of the season high seven SCP rushing TDs, and 138 of the Sentinels 294 yards rushing in the 55-17 win. The 2nd seeded Sentinels will host Winslow on Saturday, a team they have yet to play, and who they have only one common opponent with- Snowflake, who accounts for SCP’s only loss of the year back in week 3.