Friday Night Rewind: Week Four

Welcome to the latest “Friday Night Rewind” and hope your #FridayNight360AZ weekend is off to a good start.

For the second time in three weeks I made the trek to Goodyear, so let’s start there.

Family Ties…On a team filled with bigger, flashier stars no Higley Knight stood out more to me Friday than Cannen Hall. The senior linebacker was everywhere as the HHS defense smothered Millennium 36-7 in the far southwest Valley.

The 5-foot-10, 195-pounder registered 10 tackles, forced a fumble and had an interception as he and his teammates neutralized Millennium senior quarterback Jalan Early.

Head coach Eddy Zubey described Hall as the “heart and soul of our defense.” He certainly put in the work this summer to prepare himself for one final ride as a Knight.

“I knew since we were losing Ty Robinson (Nebraska), Logan Maxwell (Utah State) and all our seniors on defense,” Hall said. “I had to step up. Being the [middle] linebacker, I guess that was my duty.”

What also may be considered Hall’s duty is following the Higley football tradition passed down from older brother Draycen, one of the top players in program history, who will play for Southern Utah after returning from his current LDS Mission in Barcelona, Spain.

“When you’ve got a brother like him, you have to want to follow in his footsteps,” Cannen, who wears his brother’s #5, said with a smile. “He’s the best big brother anybody could have…[but] I want to create my own legacy, too.”  

Perfect PV…Paradise Valley head coach Greg Davis isn’t into excuses. Despite frequently lacking depth, being undersized and, at times, completely overmatched at the 5A level against bigger schools (from an enrollment standpoint), the “blue-collar” Trojans are a direct reflection of their coach. They simply show up and play the game with class and respect.

— David Hines (@DavidHinesAz) September 20, 2019

All the hard work with a core senior group, who have played varsity since their freshmen or sophomore years, are now 4-0 after plastering Tucson Flowing Wells 63-30 at home to improve to 4-0.

“Really just a tribute to our kids hard work,” Davis said Friday night. “Lots of things we need to get better at but really proud at the way these seniors and the rest of the team have found ways to win.”

The Trojans’ offense, paced by senior quarterback and North Carolina State commit Ben Finley, is averaging over 50 points per game this fall. 

I’d expect PV to be 8-0 when they end their regular season slate at home against Horizon and Notre Dame Prep later next month. 

Three and Out…Three scores which caught my eye from Week Four.

1. Gilbert holds off Sunrise Mountain 50-47 at home.

I mean, let’s be honest, have we come to expect anything less from Derek Zellner’s team? The Tigers have been involved in some wild shootouts the past few years and Friday was no different over a suddenly slumping Mustang squad who dropped to 2-2 after opening 2-0.

Senior quarterback and University of Arizona commit Will Plummer is doing it all for the undermanned Tigers, who play in a loaded San Tan Section.

2. Liberty takes out their Nevada namesake 36-33 in Henderson. Mark Smith’s team has bounced back quite nicely from a season-opening loss to Brophy back in Week Zero.

The Liberty Lions (4-1) outscored the Liberty Patriots 10-7 in the fourth quarter to hold on for the out-of-state win.

After managing just six points against BCP, the Lions’ offense has come alive averaging nearly 39 during their four-game win streak. Next week they’re back at home against Doug Madoski’s much-improved Mountain Ridge Mountain Lions who edged Tolleson Friday to improve to 4-1. 

Mountain Ridge went winless (0-10) in 2018.

3. Hamilton blows out Mountain Pointe 42-13 in Chandler.

Look, we all know this has been an extremely difficult week for everyone in and around the Mountain Pointe program but the Pride are now 1-3 with upcoming games against Queen Creek, Highland and then the annual ‘Tukee Bowl against rival Desert Vista.

Rich Wellbrock’s team is having trouble scoring points, which a recipe for distaster playing a schedule loaded with teams who can light up the scoreboard in a hurry.