Carlos Melendez' 25-yard touchdown run and subsequent two-point conversion propelled San Tan Foothills to a thrilling 52-50 comeback victory over host-Coolidge on Friday night.
Melendez’s final run saved the Sabercats, who blew a 44-14 halftime lead and found themselves trailing in the fourth quarter after Bears’running back Seth Ellis scored his fourth touchdown of the second half from 62 yards out. Coolidge quarterback Michael Felix scored on a two-point conversion to give the Bears a 50-44 lead.
The Bears had no answer for Melendez, though, who broke loose for his fifth touchdown of the game to tie the score at 50-50, then punched in the two-point conversion to finish the game with 41 carries for 324 yards.
Melendez scored four of his five touchdowns in the second quarter on runs of 23, 9, 13 and 4 yards as San Tan outscored the Bears 32-7 to open up a 30-point lead at the half.
Coolidge then scored 42 consecutive points to take the lead before Melendez put the game to bed. On the night, the Sabercats rushed for 512 yards on 61 carries.
San Tan Foothills’ next game will be Oct. 21 at home versus Tempe Prep.
Campo Verde 17, Florence 14: After trailing 14-0 in the third quarter, Campo Verde (5-3) rallied for 17 points in the final 20 minutes of play to pull off the comeback victory. Campo Verde rushed for 222 yards as a team, with 123 of those yards and a touchdown from Lorenzo Sanchez. Following a safety on defense, a 36-yard touchdown pass from Rand Hawk to Alex Buppert, followed by a 2-point conversion run by Tyler Mills completed the comeback. Campo faces a tough test next week when Coyotes host Queen Creek.
Saguaro 56, Coronado 0: DJ Foster ran wild on Coronado with 215 yards and five touchdowns (plus a TD reception) on just 11 carries as top-ranked Saguaro (Division III) ran away with a the win. Foster wasted no time getting going as he scored from 75 yards out on the first play of the game, helping the Sabercats jump out to a 28-0 first quarter lead they would only build upon as the game went on. Overall, Saguaro rushed for 319 yards on 17 attempts compared to 34 yards on 31 attempts for the Dons. Coronado quarterback Reid Blakey was 10-for-14 passing for 78 yards. The Sabercats host Arcadia next Friday, while Coronado looks to rebound at home versus Payson.
Higley 57, Combs 0: Higley running back Zach Rock rushed for two touchdowns, while quarterback Jacob Gonzales passed for one and and rushed one in himself in the Knights' shutout. Higley rushed for 199 yards while holding the Coyotes to zero yards on 16 attempts. The Knights made big plays in all facets of the game with a 58-yard fumble return by Hector Sarmiento in the first quarter and a 67-yard punt return in the second quarter by Tristan DaCosta. Higley will stay home to play Casa Grande on Oct. 21, with Combs traveling to Apache Junction.
Scottsdale Prep 82, Rancho Solano 31: Scottsdale Prep quarterback Aidan Wright had a record breaking night, racking up 440 yards passing and throwing eight touchdowns to lead the Spartans to an 82-31 win over visiting Rancho Solano. With his fourth touchdown pass, an 80-yard strike to Nick Smith, Wright broke the all-time 8-man state touchdown record of touchdown passes in a season, finishing the game with 40. The old record was 35 set by Brian Chason (Tucson Christian) in 1985. Wright also rushed for 75 yards and a touchdown, while finishing the game without throwing an interception. Scottsdale Prep wide receiver Grayson Boyll, led the team with six receptions for 128 yards and three touchdowns. The Spartans look to keep their momentum going as the first round of the Division VI playoffs begin next week.
Gilbert Christian 61, Ash Fork 2: Nolan Cook’s five rushing touchdowns paced visiting Gilbert Christian in the rout. Next up for the Knights are the Division VI playoffs that get underway next week.