Daniel Arrubla missed No. 4-seeded Hamilton's first-round state playoff match earlier in the week due to an illness. The senior scorer made sure Saturday's home quarterfinal pairing with No. 12 seed Carl Hayden was not the last of his high school action.
Arrubla scored the Huskies' second goal to set the school's single-season scoring record as Hamilton advanced to next week's semifinals with a 2-0 victory.
The Huskies will face No. 1 Chaparral on Wednesday at 7 p.m. at Campo Verde H.S.
"More than his goal-scoring, we needed his leadership today," Hamilton coach Nick Markette said. "We play quite a few sophomores who have not been through the playoffs. Dan's been here three times now. He has a calming effect for us."
Arrubla cemented Hamilton's third consecutive trip to the semifinals with a goal in the 67th minute. He headed in a corner kick from Luis Manta for his 35th score of the season which broke the mark set by Tony Cascio.
"The main goal all season has been winning the state championship," said Arrubla, who was a member of the last two Hamilton teams which both lost in the state title match. "We're really hoping the third time is a charm."
The Huskies grabbed control of this one early. Defender Blake Traube headed in a corner kick in the second minute as his shot found its way through traffic and past goalkeeper William Rivera.
Carl Hayden had a few scoring opportunities in the first half. Amado Sanchez fired a vapor-trail shot off the right post in the fourth minute. The shot nearly ricocheted to midfield. Hamilton's best scoring chance in the half was turned away by Rivera following a scramble in front of the goal in the 10th minute.
"We knew they were a quality team," Arrubla said. "We had to play our game. They have some really good players."
Markette said his team had to keep more than one eye on Rivera: "I'm glad he's a senior. He's fantastic."
In the second half, Rivera hurt himself on a goal kick and lay on the ground 40 feet outside the goal as Hamilton gained possession. But a Huskies shot from 30 yards bounced to the right of the goal. Tyler Patel nearly added a third goal for Hamilton but his header sailed just outside an open goal in the final five minutes.
In the second half, Markette said his team settled down and played the way it is capable of playing.
"The first half we were not playing how we can," Markette said. "We did a good job of not giving them life in the first half, and in the second half we really limited them."
Carl Hayden drew a flurry of yellow cards in the last 15 minutes of the second half, including a red card for Rivera. Kiyan Pirgheybi secured the shutout for Hamilton, recording seven saves.