10. Highland Hawks - East Valley Tribune: Home

10. Highland Hawks

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The Hawks took a step forward in 2012 with a 6-4 regular season and a berth in the Division I state tournament. They have 14 starters returning, including eight from a stout defense. It’s been a while since Highland has been thought of as a legitimate player, but a special senior class is hoping to prove this team belongs in the top-10 rankings.

Grant Thompson and Grant Gale combined to record 18 sacks last year and will be a handful for opposing offensive linemen. The defense will be solid, but the team’s fate could rest on the performances of quarterback Blake Young (1,100 passing yards, 295 rushing yards, 16 TD) and running back Ryan McCord (293 rush yards, 3 TD, team-best 7.92 yards-per-carry), who was injured last season but is expected to have a big year.

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