Oree Foster
Staff Writer, AZPreps365.com

3A North, Little Colorado 2A North football previews

October 17, 2018 by Oree Foster, AZPreps365

Post-season state football playoff berths will become more clearer this Friday, in 3A North and Little Colorado 2A North ball games.

Many of the schools have two important games remaining on their regular season schedule. The first round of the state tournament begins at the high seed on November 2.

3A North preview

Page (7-1, 3-0) at Chinle (4-4, 3-0) - 7 p.m.

The Page Sand Devils travels to Wildcat Stadium to face Chinle in an important 3A North Region ball game on Friday at 7 p.m.

Page, ranked No. 4 in statewide power rankings, and No. 25 ranked Chinle enter the game with undefeated region records at 3-0.

Since losing to the Snowflake Lobos, 50-28, last month, Page has won four in a row, handily.

When Page head coach Mitchell Stephens was asked who the Sand Devils' next opponent, he said in humble statement. "Chinle .... They're also 3-0 in region."

Chinle struggled at the beginning of the season, losing to Holbrook, 14-12; Red Mesa, 44-27; Winslow, 26-0; and Payson, 16-0.

The Wildcats made a turn-about, winning its last three games.

Chinle head coach Alan Barwick said Page is strong on both sides of the ball.

"Page is easily the best team we have faced all season," Barwick said. "With stud athletes at every position. It will be  tough challenge for us. We had better come ready to play."

Ganado (4-4, 1-2) at Kayenta Monument Valley (3-5, 2-1) - 7 p.m.

It is a must-win for 3A North Region teams. Ganado, ranked No. 23 in the latest statewide power rankings, and No. 27 ranked Kayenta Monument Valley meet on the Mustangs' home field in a region game on Friday at 7 p.m.

Kayenta Monument Valley couldn't buy a win at the beginning of the season, losing four Freedom games. The Mustangs turned its season around, winning three of its last four games, capping its streak with a 34-6 win over the Tuba City Warriors.

"The biggest thing is to play one game at a time and work on improvement," said Kayenta Monument Valley head coach Bryan Begay. "The road does not get easy. It gets more difficult. You've got to be good with your eyes and full speed to the ball ... get the tackle and force the turnover."

Begay said the Ganado is a big game for the Mustangs.

"Obviously, we are playing a good football team," Begay said. "I think the atmosphere will be great. We're excited for that. We need to stay focused. Hopefully the game we've played and competition we've played will help us. We'll see improvement from last week to this Friday."

First-year Ganado head coach Connor Simmons is preparing his Hornets for its big game against Kayenta Monument Valley.

"We know they (Kayenta Monument Valley) are coming off a good win over Tuba City," Simmons said. "They played well on defense and offense."

Tuba City (1-7, 0-3) at Window Rock (3-5, 0-3) - 7 p.m.

The Tuba City Warriors and Window Rock Fighting Scouts enter the game winless in 3A North Region.

The Warriors, ranked No. 35 in the statewide power rankings, and No. 34 ranked Fighting Scouts renew their series at Judd Avey Memorial Stadium in Fort Defiance on Friday at 7 p.m.

The Tuba City / Window Rock loser will occupy the cellar in the region.

The Tuba City / Window Rock game marks the return of Warriors' head coach Floyd Haven, a former three-sport athlete for the Fighting Scouts during the early 1970's.

The Warriors defeated the Hopi Bruins, 38-8, early last month. Due to lack of varsity experience and young players, Tuba City has struggled, losing five games in a row.

Haven said, "Window Rock .... they are young like we are. It should be a good game."

Window Rock are 1-win and 3-losses during its last four games, including a three game losing streak.

Window Rock head coach Wilbur Begay Jr. said the Fighting Scouts are looking forward to the game.

"They (Tuba City) have a solid quarterback (Ty Engle) and a good rush defense," Begay said. "We respect them. We will give them our full attention, just like any other opponent."

Little Colorado 2A North preview

Many Farms (0-8, 0-5) at Red Mesa (8-0, 5-0) - 7 p.m.

Red Mesa head coach Pita Olomua said he respects all opponents. Red Mesa hosts the Many Farms Lobos, ranked No. 41 in the latest statewide power rankings, in a Little Colorado 2A North game on Friday at 7 p.m.

"We have to play Red Mesa football," Olomua said. "We can't look past anyone. The kids have been playing well all season."

Red Mesa is unbeaten at 8-0 and ranked No. 7 in the latest statewide power rankings, which includes wins over 3A North Region teams, Tuba City, Chinle and Kayenta Monument Valley.

Many Farms head coach Jonathan Begay is aware of Red Mesa's explosive offense and stingy defense.

"They (Red Mesa) are a solid team," Begay said. "They like to run the ball. They are well-coached. They have beaten everyone in our region."

Alchesay (7-1, 5-0) at Hopi (4-4, 4-1) - 7 p.m.

The Alchesay Falcons, ranked No. 14 in the latest statewide power rankings, travels to No. 28 Hopi Bruins on Friday at 7 p.m. in a Little Colorado 2A North Region game.

Alchesay head coach Brandon Newcomb said he is aware of Hopi's offense and defense.

"Hopi will be the best team we have played since Pima," Newcomb said. "They run a Wing T. They have some quick athletes we'll have to contain."

Alchesay has won five of its last six games this season. Earlier last month, Alchesay dropped a 38-0 decision to the Pima Roughriders in a Freedom game.

Pinon (3-6, 3-2) at Greyhills Academy (1-6, 1-4) - 7 p.m.

The Pinon Eagles, No. 31 in the latest statewide power rankings, are on the road in Tuba City to play No. 40 ranked Greyhills Academy Knights in a Little Colorado 2A North Region contest on Friday at 7 p.m.

Pinon has lost four of its last six games. The Eagles ended its four game losing streak with a win over Rock Point last Friday.

Greyhills Academy lost its first five games of the year, before beating the Many Farms Lobos. The Knights dropped a 60-8 decision to the Alchesay Falcons last Friday.

Valley Sanders (1-6, 1-4) at Rock Point (1-7, 1-4) - 7 p.m.

The Valley Sanders Pirates face the Rock Point Cougars on Friday at 7 p.m. in a Little Colorado 2A North Region game.

Valley Sanders and Rock Point are hoping to break its losing streak.

Valley Sanders last win was last month, a win over the Many Farms Lobos, 26-18.

Rock Point lost its first five games of the season. Then the Cougars defated Greyhills Academy, before dropping two more games.

Valley Sanders head coach Patrick Boone said Rock Point head coach Brandon Jones will have his team ready to play.

"They (Rock Point) have a sound offense and defense," Boone said. "It will be a dog fight for both teams. They have fast players and throw the ball well. We have to contain their rushing. We must make plays. We must catch the ball and give our quarterback time to make plays."