September 4, 2004
Be careful what you wish for.
While Higley coach Jim Beall has no regrets from changing Friday’s game against relative cake walk Pusch Ridge to defending state champion and second-ranked Show Low, his record did as the Knights did not have enough in the second half in a 19-13 loss.
"We just played the best team in the state," Beall roared to his players on the sidelines as the clock ticked away to the Knights’ first loss of the young season.
However, after the first half, it was hard to tell who the defending state champion was.
Higley (1-1) outrushed the Cougars 133-51 en route to a 6-0 halftime lead after Knights senior quarterback Zach Appenzellar led an eight-play drive that was capped by an 18-yard pass to wide receiver Dan Reber.
Show Low (1-0) started the second half with an 8-yard quarterback keeper by Marc Rova and Cougar running back Daniel Rivera added a 22-yard score in the third.
A 1-yard touchdown run by the Knights’ Ozzie Njoroge made the game a one-possession affair with just over a minute to go, but a failed onside kick ended the Knights’ hopes.