The Hamilton football program tends to get opponents out of their comfort zone.
The Huskies are so dominant, so difficult to compete with and rarely have an off game so the team across for them knows it has to be near perfect, while trying some things out of the ordinary in order to have a chance against streaking Hamilton.
Undefeated Desert Vista was the next to work all week toward knocking off the state's best program and entered the game after creating what they thought was the perfect game plan, only to quickly find out it wasn't enough.
It rarely is against Hamilton.
The Huskies thoroughly dominated the host Thunder to the tune of a 35-10 win Thursday night in a Division I non-section game that ended with some fireworks as one of Desert Vista's best players was ejected and the coaching staffs had to be separated.
The frustration of being handled so easily by Hamilton (7-0) might have gotten to Desert Vista (6-1) as junior offensive guard Zach Tamburo was ejected after the Thunder scored a late touchdown for throwing a punch and possibly kicking a Hamilton defender.
It didn't sit well with the Husky coaching staff and while the players were shaking hands it got heated between the two head coaches.
"To be honest with you, it is stuff that shouldn't happen," Hamilton coach Steve Belles said. "They got a guy ejected who is one of their better players. I think it was frustration on their part. I think both teams could have handled things better during the game."
It took away from what was a pretty clean game that was essentially over after the Huskies first drive of the second half.
Hamilton led 14-3 at halftime and Desert Vista opened the third quarter with the ball. The Thunder were forced to punt and a 45-yarder could have changed the field position, only to have Hamilton quarterback Blake Kemp connect with Just'n Thymes on the first play of the drive for a 70-yard touchdown.
It was 21-3 with 8:14 left in third quarter but with the way the Hamilton defense was playing it felt more like 42-3.
"It was huge in terms of what they did last week to Saguaro," Belles said of the Thunder's 31-28 win after trailing 28-6 at the half. "We knew we had to do something on offense and not put our defense in a bad situation. It really set the tone in the second half."
Until Hamilton started to pile on the points late in the second half as Kemp (12 of 19 for 253 yards with four total touchdowns) found his groove, the Thunder didn't play all that bad.
But the Huskies played their finest game of the season.
There wasn't a late fourth-quarter drive needed to seal the win over Mountain Pointe or the Chandler offense didn't have to fumble umpteen times in the final quarter to basically hand Hamilton a comeback victory.
The Huskies played well from the start on both sides of the ball to basically fend off another supposed contender.
The offense didn't have a turnover for the first time while the defense kept an offense that averaged 44.7 points and 373 yards per game out of the end zone until the final minute.
"Oh, yeah, that was by far our best game of the year," said senior defensive end Jaxon Hood, who had two of the team's five sacks. "The offense didn't have a turnover and the defensive front got after them and didn't let them score."
The Thunder came away disappointed in the way they played mainly because they felt like they weren't themselves.
Desert Vista didn't call a fly sweep, its patented offensive play, until the second half, while quarterback Hunter Rodriguez (14 of 24 for 133 yards, three interceptions) struggled with Hamilton's ever-present pressure and Tamburo was ejected after reacting uncharacteristically.
It's part of the problem of facing Hamilton. In trying to beat the best, you can over think things by trying to be too fine or tricky. When it fails the inevitable loss comes to fruition.
"They schemed our fly really well," Desert Vista coach Dan Hinds said. "They loaded up on the fly and were ready for it, but in the second half I didn't care we had to try it."
By then it was too late as Hamilton remains the team to beat in Division I.
"I came in feeling good that we could compete with them," Desert Vista senior Mike Arredondo said. "They just keep the pressure on you and make you pay for every mistake."