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Christian Kirk, Jr., WR, Saguaro
An injury suffered in a car accident forced Kirk to miss the first two games of last season, but he came on strong, finishing the year with 43 catches for 1,003 yards and 12 touchdowns. Kirk is expected to play a hybrid role this season, getting carries in the backfield and getting split out wide. He’s an electric athlete who will likely be the top recruit in the class of 2015, and already has scholarship offers from several prominent colleges. The Sabercats fell short of a state championship last season, but with Kirk and quarterback Luke Rubenzer leading the way, they should be in the mix to get back on top in 2013.
Explosive first half plays highlighted Saguaro’s dominant 55-13 victory over Arcadia.
Kirk lined up everywhere on offense, and was basically never chased down from behind once he reached the back end of a defense. He ran for 825 yards and 13 touchdowns (10 yards per carry). Using quick screen passes to go with slants and the occasional deep ball, caught 65 passes for 1,164 yards and 17 touchdowns. Quick math says 2,000 yards and 30 touchdowns. Speaking of back end defenses, he also made 50 tackles with two interceptions and five passes defended at safety. Some believe he’ll be every bit as good next year and beyond than D.J. Foster was for Saguaro. Far worse comparisons have been made.
In this file photo, former House Speaker Kirk Adams of Mesa, right, says members of a special screening panel purposely refused to support an applicant for the Independent Redistricting Commission because he disclosed his involvement in a Tucson Christian organization. Adams is in the news again because he heads up Americans for Responsible Leadership, a group that is trying to affect ballot measures in Arizona and California. A judge ruled Wednesday that the group must disclose names of donors.
Perhaps in the only moment that Saguaro offense looked vulnerable was on a punt return.
Christian Kirk scored touchdowns on both sides of the ball as he led Saguaro to a 49-21 rout over Queen Creek in the D-III semifinals Friday night at Arcadia High School.
TUCSON — In the (shortened) week leading up to the Division III state finals, Queen Creek's players and coaches spoke at length about needing to avoid getting in a shootout with Saguaro if the Bulldogs wanted to repeat as champions.
Christian Kirk (right) and his Saguaro teammates celebrate a 56-0 win over McClintock on Sept. 27, 2013.
Saguaro wide receiver Christian Kirk stretches before a spring practice at the school, Thursday, May 17, 2012 in Scottsdale. [Tim Hacker/ Tribune]
Saguaro wide receiver Christian Kirk catches a ball during spring practice at the school, Thursday, May 17, 2012 in Scottsdale. [Tim Hacker/ Tribune]
Defensive tackle Alex Bell (37) tackles Saguaro's Christian Kirk (2) during the DIII State Championship game between Saguaro and Williams Field at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, November 29, 2014.
Running back Christian Kirk (2) makes a move during the DIII State Championship game between Saguaro and Williams Field at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, November 29, 2014.
Senior Christian Kirk (2) hurdles a Williams Field defender during the DIII State Championship game between Saguaro and Williams Field at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, November 29, 2014.
Saguaro’s Michael Rice tackles Chaparral’s Christian Kirk on Friday, Aug. 30, 2013 in Scottsdale. [Ana Ramirez/ Tribune]
Saguaro kick returner Christian Kirk ,center, is tackled by Chaparral defenders Cody Ippolito, right, and Hector Comacho, left, in the second quarter of a football game at Chaparral High School in Scottsdale. [Paul Connors/For the Tribune]
When it comes to Saguaro’s football team, there is one question everyone has that nobody has seemed to be able to solve: How in the world do you stop Christian Kirk.
Running back Christian Kirk (2) stiff-arms a Williams Field defender during the DIII State Championship game between Saguaro and Williams Field at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe on Saturday, November 29, 2014.
Christian Kirk, Saguaro (pictured): 70 yards, 2 TD passing; 5 catches, 76 yards
Marcus Maldonado, Marcos de Niza: 65- and 74-yard kickoff return TDs
Brophy special teams: Two field goal blocks, punt block, TD
1. Saguaro — QB Luke Rubenzer and WR Christian Kirk again will lead an explosive offense, and potential RB issues are overblown. The addition of out-of-state WR/DB transfer J.T. Nettleton is key. However, the question remains: Can the defense stop people?
Chaparral tight end Dylan Cozens, right, makes a reception for a two-point conversion over Saguaro defensive back Christian Kirk, left, in the second quarter of a football game at Chaparral High School. Cozens helped Chaparral win football and baseball state championships, and is currently in the Philadelphia Phillies' minor league system.
Chaparral tight end Dylan Cozens, right, makes a reception for a two-point conversion over Saguaro defensive back Christian Kirk, left, in the second quarter of a football game at Chaparral High School in Scottsdale. [Paul Connors/For the Tribune]
Mark Andrews, Desert Mountain (pictured): 201 yards, 3 TD
Christian Kirk, Saguaro: 142 yards, TD
Cules Rose, Pinnacle: 136 yards, 2 TD
TJ Widner, Valley Christian: 131 yards, TD
Nick Colson, Higley: 130 yards, TD
Cole Lenderink, Scottsdale Christian: 120 yards, 2 TD
Cole Forsgren, Williams Field: 118 yards, 3 TD
Brandon Garcia, Seton Catholic: 109 yards, 2 TD
Izzy Simpson, Chaparral: 107 yards
Trevor Wood, Chaparral: 106 yards, TD
Jordan Sims, Campo Verde: 81 yards, 2 TD
The Desert Storm, a 12U basketball team, recently captured the Excel Gold league’s regular season and tournament championships.
Williams Field kept pace with Saguaro for one half, but the Black Hawks couldn’t stop the Sabercats or star halfback Christian Kirk in the second in their 45-21 defeat in the Division III State Championship Game on Saturday.