Oree Foster
Staff Writer, AZPreps365.com

Chinle earns 3A North Region football victory

October 1, 2018 by Oree Foster, AZPreps365

With four weeks remaining in the regular season, Class 3A North Region and Little Colorado Region Class 2A North schools continue to jockey for post season state football tournament berths.

The state football tournament will be determined on statewide power rankings.

Chinle 43, Ganado 18

First-year Chinle head coach Alan Barwick said the Wildcats refused to quit.

""This is a principle that we have focused on in depth," Barwick said. "We were down 18-7 with 12.1-seconds left in the first half. We took a kickoff back for a touchdown and scored a two-point conversion. Even though we were still down at halftime, we took the momentum going into the second half."

Chinle went on to defeat Ganado, 43-18, as both teams began 3A North Region competition before a large crowd at Wildcat Stadium in Chinle.

Despite the victory, Barwick was concerned about the Wildcats' overall game performance.

"We have to be more disciplined at the line of scrimmage," he said. "Penalties have been killing us all season. Our offense has a lot of talent, but that lack of focus keeps killing all of our drives."

Barwick said it is difficult to put one guy above the rest, while talking about the Wildcats' defensive play.

"We have a true team on defense," Barwick said. "Darren Woody did return a fumble for a touchdown. That was good."

Woody continued his assault on Ganado. He returned a kickoff for a touchdown. In addition, Woody caught a touchdown pass. Wildcat teammate Juan Curley rushed for a touchdown. Curley scored a touchdown on a blocked punt of Chinle's that Ganado failed to recover. Barwick said Curley's play was spectacular.

Ganado's first-year head coach Connor Simmons said the Hornets' downfall was too many mental mistakes and the team did not capitalize when Chinle gave them opportunities.

"We beat ourselves by allowing mistakes," Simmons said. "We dropped two first down touchdowns in the first half. We committed a personal foul on a fourth down that led to a Chinle touchdown. We gave up three special teams touchdowns. Also, we committed a huge penalty on a fake punt that would have resulted in a first down for us. We looked very undisciplined out there. I take the blame for allowing that to happen."

Chinle, 2-4, 1-0, travel to Kayenta to face the Monument Valley Mustangs, 2-4, 1-0, this Friday in a region contest at 7 p.m.

Simmons the Hornets need work on basic fundamentals. He said he and the coaching staff plan to change things this week.

"The coaching staff wants to find kids that have heart and find kis that want to play the full four quarters," he said.

Simmons said Hornet Tony Shirley played well offensively. Shirley threw a touchdown pass and rushed for a touchdown.

"He (Tony Shirley) started and finished the game going 100 per cent," he said. "That's what we are looking for here in Ganado."

Ganado, 3-3, 0-1, host the Tuba City Warriors, 1-5, 0-1) this Friday in the region game at 7 p.m.

Page 66, Tuba City 0

Page head coach Mitch Stephens said the Sand Devils' 66-0 victory was an overall team effort. He said the Sand Devils played well on both sides of the ball.

"We have to eliminate big plays and improve in our kicking game," Stephens explained.

Page's Dainian Sloan picked off two pass interceptions and recorded a quarterback sack to lead his team defensively.

"Dainian (Sloan) was one of many players that played well," Stephens said. "He was one of many players that played well. Hayden Garcia was demanding double or tripled team all night."

Stephens pointed out receiver Justin Salabiye started the game with an amazing catch. He said Salabiye played well throughout the game.

Page's triple threat in the offensive backfield of Kele Meredith, Hayden Gracia, Dillion Anderson and Robert Smith team together to rush for more than 400 yards on the night.

Page, 5-1, 1-0, entertains the Window Rock Fighting Scouts, 3-3, 0-1, this Friday in the region game at 7 p.m.

First-year Tuba City head coach Floyd Haven said the Warriors' youth and inexperience continues to show. He said the opposing teams take the opportunity to exploit the Warriors' weaknesses on both sides of the ball.

"Tuba City's homecoming week didn't help matters," he said. "The reality of all this is that Page has a good football team with a huge offensively line and running back we could not contain. We have no team speed, so we try a variety defensive fronts and try to blitz."

Haven pointed out that the Warriors need to work on fundamentals.

"We need to tackle better," he said. "We need to get rid of the blocker better by using a variety defensive techniques. We need to run to the ball and get better pursuit angles."

Haven said sophomore middle linebacker Seth Brown is the Warriors defensive leader and team captain.

"He (Seth Brown) always seems to be around the football," Haven said. "Seth Dugi who is normally a linebacker, but we put him on the defensive line position. He was in a lot of tackles in the fourth quarter. Seniors Dylan Johnson and Brandon Bia ran and hustled to the ball. They are always very consistent on defense."

Haven praised the work of senior quarterback Ty Engle and running back Brown on offense.

Tuba City, 1-5, 0-1, travels to Burnside Junction this Friday to face the Ganado Hornets, 3-3, 0-1, in the region ball game at 7 p.m.

Rock Point 42, Greyhills Academy 30

The Rock Point Cougars chalked up its first victory of the season, knocking off the Greyhills Academy Knights, 42-30, in the Little Colorado Class 2A North Region game.

"Our key was to start off the offense with three plays, it worked out," said Rock Point head coach Brandon Jones. "Two minutes into the start of the game, we scored a touchdown. The kids were disciplined. Our offensive line was perfect on the night."

Jones said the Cougars still need work on catching the football. He said the Cougars dropped passes in the end zone for sure touchdowns.

Jones said linebacker Chris Bahe did a good job on defense. Jones said Bahe kept the defensive backs on their toes. He said Bahe made key tackles when Greyhills rushed up the middle.

Offensively, Jones said Wiyaka Holiday played outstanding in the backfield. Holiday rushed for 150 yards for the game.

Greyhills Academy, 0-5, 0-3, entertains the Many Farms Lobos, 0-6, 0-3, this Friday in a Little Colorado Class 2A North Region game at 7 p.m.

Rock Point, 1-5, 1-2, host the Alchesay Falcons, 5-1, 3-0) in a Little Colorado Class 2A North Region contes this Friday at 7 p.m.

Alchesay 50, Pinon 6

The Alchesay Falcons continue to roll in prep football action.

Alchesay posted a 50-6 victory over the Pinon Eagles in a Little Colorado Class 2A North Region contest.

Alchesay head coach Brandon Newcomb said the Falcons were ready to play and were focused.

"A big point in the game, we scored 22 points in less than a minute of the game," Newcomb said. "We scored a touchdown with one minute left in the first half. Pinon had trouble fielding a squib kick that we recovered and was able to score another touchdown with seven seconds left in the half. Pinon kicked off to us to start the third quarter and we returned the kickoff for a touchdown. That was a big factpr in the outcome of the game."

Newcomb said the Falcons need to have a better week of preparation for its upcoming ball games.

"We need to continue to work hard in our drill periods that will make us better football players," he said.

Newcomb praised defensive ends Nick Kitcheyan and Jeremiah Kessay for their performance.

"Nick (Kitcheyan) and Jeremiah (Kessay) have played well at defensive end all season," he said. "Isaac Lupe filled in well for an absent player."

Newcomb said Ryan Quintero did a great job subbing for senior running back standout Tyreck Cosay, who suffered a sprain knee early in the game. Quintero rushed for 100 yards and scored four touchdowns.

Alchesay, 5-1, 3-0, faces Rock Point, 1-5, 1-2, on the Cougars' home field this Friday in a Little Colorado Class 2A North Region contest at 7 p.m.

Pinon, 2-5, 2-1, travels to Red Mesa, 6-0, 3-0, in this Friday at 7 p.m. for a Little Colorado Class 2A North Region game.