Campo Verde at Mesquite - East Valley Tribune: Home

Campo Verde at Mesquite

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Campo Verde at Mesquite: An unexpected (especially in Mesquite’s case) but delicious matchup between these Gilbert schools, both sitting in the top 8 in Division II. In many ways they’re identical: They’re going to run the ball, use it to set up the pass, play defense and hit hard. It’s going to be physical and emotional. The key will be whether one team can properly handle those emotions and adrenaline, and which team is able to succeed offensively against the other. Both Mesquite QB Payton Haslam and Campo Verde QB Luke Pineda have been extremely efficient passing and running the ball. Pineda is completing 70 percent of his passes for 19 touchdowns and zero (yes, zero) interceptions this season. Both teams have running backs (Mesquite’s Paul Perry and Campo Verde’s Gabe Ogbonnaya) who’ve been forces most of the season. Mesquite’s offensive line has been excellent. So, too, has Campo Verde’s defensive line. Even common opponents have yielded similar results in those handful of occasions. The back-and-forth here could go on and on. It’s going to be a good, low-scoring, physical night. Mesquite (No. 3 seed) will get two home games in the playoffs if it wins here to secure a top-four seed (not bad after a 2-8 record in 2012). If Campo Verde (No. 7) loses, it puts the Coyotes into the “unknown” whether they can hang on to a No. 8 seed and get one home game. Pick your preference.

Prediction: Mesquite 24, Campo Verde 21

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