Tag Archives: Centennial

high schools

Centennial completely in control vs. Apollo

by Jason Stone

If there was ever a question of whether Peoria Centennial has a complete team in 2012, it answered emphatically Friday night at Glendale Apollo.
Centennial showed why it’s the No.1 team in Division II with a dominating 70-20 win in a battle of top-10 unbeatens.
Centennial (4-0) scored touchdowns rushing, passing, on special teams and on defense and led 35-7 lead before attempting its first pass.
“We were just trying to keep up with the defense,” quarterback Tre’von Grant said. “The defense was scoring more than we (the offense) were.”
Nine players scored touchdowns for Centennial, and twice it scored touchdowns a minute apart. The first came in the first quarter, when it took a 21-7 lead despite having the ball only once offensively.
No.9 Apollo (3-1) never recovered from the early hole, despite having an offense that came in averaging 52 points a game.
Centennial’s Kyle Mack picked off a Jordan Gungl pass and returned it 45 yards for a touchdown, giving Centennial a 14-0 lead midway through the first quarter.
Apollo showed life with a nine-play scoring drive to cut the deficit in half, but Centennial grabbed momentum back immediately as Oche Meyers took the ensuing kickoff back 99 yards for a touchdown.
Apollo got within 22 points with a touchdown right before halftime, but Centennial dominated the second half despite emptying its bench.
Dominique Hodge scooped up a fumble and returned it 67 yards for a TD midway in the third quarter to turn the game into a rout.
A fumble recovery and blocked punt set up two more Centennial touchdowns.
“All phases of the game chipped in,” Centennial coach Richard Taylor said. “There is still work to be done, but the kids played great tonight.”

Published at azcentral.com • Sept. 14, 2012

high schools

Game Notes: Overflow crowd at Apollo

by Jason Stone

Glendale Apollo experienced something unique for the school Friday night: an overflow crowd. Of course, Peoria Centennial, the No.1 team in Division II, was the opponent. Some fans were forced to watch from the end zones and around the fence as anticipation was high for the battle of two Top 10 unbeaten teams.Those who didn’t get there in time missed an early scoring explosion. Centennial had 21 points after having the ball on offense only once. It also scored a touchdown on defense and special teams. Combined the teams had 62 points at halftime.

Published at azcentral.com • Sept. 14, 2012

high schools

Cobras making believers in 4A

by Jason Stone

Of the four times Cactus has made it to the 4A state championship game over the last two decades, Cobras coach Larry Fetkenhier said this one is the most unpredictable.
Only five players who saw significant playing time in last year’s title game returned and two of them are now playing on the other side of the ball.
Throw in the fact that Cactus’ usual star-studded roster has no big names, that the team had to rebound from a 48-point loss to end the regular season, and that support even on its own campus is tepid at best, it’s no wonder the Cobras were a surprise to return to Sun Devil Stadium.
“I think this team has a will to win,” said Fetkenhier, who is taking Cactus to the title game for the fourth time in his 21 years as coach. “They don’t believe the soothsayers. The don’t listen to what people say about them and it’s a real credit to them that they got past that and they’re here.”
It has been said that good teams create their own luck. If that’s true, Cactus must be a great team.
The Cobras have won three games in the final seconds on field goals and rebounded from a 29-0 deficit in the first half against Prescott in Cactus’ homecoming game.
Despite that adversity, the Cobras knocked off Millennium, Cienega and Saguaro to get to this week’s game against high-powered Moon Valley.
The Rockets enter the game undefeated and owners of one of the best offenses in the state.
Led by do-everything wide receiver Chris McGaha, Moon Valley has scored more than 600 points this season and knocked off No. 1 seed Centennial 14-10 in last week’s other semifinal.
Cactus’ defense, which has only allowed 21 points in the three playoff games and none to Saguaro in the semifinals, is hoping to slow down the Rocket attack.
“We’d like to think our offense would do a whole lot better than it did last week,” Moon Valley coach Roger Brinson said. “I see this being a low scoring game if we don’t play well offensively.”
Cactus’ defense has been tough since yielding 54 points against Centennial to end the regular season.
“After the 10th game, we made a couple of changes,” Fetkenhier said. “I think our defense has been coming along pretty good.”
And, like the New York Yankees in baseball, Cactus always finds a way to get it done when it counts.

Published at glendalestar.com • Dec. 3, 2004

high schools

Unbeaten rivals meet; Ridge, Ironwood up for title

by Jason Stone

Most prep football observers expected Cactus and Centennial to battle for the Wells Fargo Region championship on the last week of the regular season.
But probably nobody predicted that both teams would come into the game undefeated.
Cactus made that possible last week when it rallied to win a game on a last-second field goal for the third time.
Cactus’ Ezra Ricks made another game-winning kick to give Cactus a 27-26 win over Pinnacle.
That sets up this week’s big showdown with Centennial, which is one of a handful of teams with a legitimate claim to win the 4A state championship.
The two teams staged two epic battles last year. In the first, Centennial nipped Cactus by three in the regular season finale, before the Cobras rallied for a come-from-behind win in the 4A quarterfinals en route to a state championship appearance.
Mountain Ridge is also playing for a league title. The Mountain Lions play at Maryvale for the 5A Northwest title, which Ridge needs to win to qualify for the postseason.
And Ironwood’s postseason chances hang in the balance when it plays at Peoria for the 5A Desert West Region title this week.

Published at glendalestar.com • Nov. 4, 2004

high schools

Holiday adds night of football for preps

by Jason Stone

‘Tis the holiday season. No, not that holiday season.
The Jewish holy day of Yom Kippur has moved some of Friday’s games to tonight this week.
That gives local high school fans two nights of football action this week.
Independence, fresh off its third shutout of the season, tonight hosts No. 2-ranked Centennial in one of the highlight games of the week.
Meanwhile, Mountain Ridge will look for its first win tonight when it plays at Westview.
Ridge is sporting an 0-3 record after not having lost a regular season game since 2001 prior to this season.
In a game with city significance, Ironwood takes on Deer Valley in North Glendale with both teams trying to reverse losses last week.
In Friday’s regularly scheduled games, Apollo (1-2) makes the jaunt up in elevation to Cottonwood to take on 1-3 Mingus.
The Hawks came a half-yard away from beating Agua Fria last week when they were stopped short on a 2-point conversion attempt with less than a minute to play.
Cactus, which won its second straight game with a last-second field goal, hosts Buckeye, and Glendale makes the trip across state to play in improved San Luis team.

Published at glendalestar.com • Sept. 22, 2004