Fear the Firebirds.
For the fourth straight football game, the Chaparral offense has been unstoppable.
Friday, in front of a national television crowd, the Firebirds walloped Scottsdale Notre Dame Prep, 59-7 at Scottsdale Community College.
The Firebirds’ offense, in the last four games, has scored 63 points against Phoenix Sunnyslope, 56 points against Scottsdale Desert Mountain, 79 last week against Tempe McClintock and now 59 points against the Saints.
So dominant were the Firebirds that the running clock rule was implemented before the first half was even over.
It was Chaparral quarterback Connor Brewer’s show. In the first half he threw for five touchdown passes as Chaparral (6-1) scored on all seven of its possessions. Brewer, needing one more touchdown pass to tie the school record, didn’t step on the field in the second half. He was 13-of-18 passing for 250 yards.
“We’re getting better each week,” understated Chaparral coach Charlie Ragle. “I’m proud of the kids. With the early start and television it could have been a distraction and it wasn’t.”
The only possession Connor didn’t throw a TD pass in the first half was when Davonte Neal took the snap was the Firebirds’ Wildcat quarterback. Neal ran 37 yards for his own touchdown.
“We’ve really focused on the little things in practice and we’re getting better,” Brewer said.
Everything went so good for Chaparral in the first half that kicker Dylan Audsley ended the half with a perfect 52-yard field goal to give the Firebirds a 45-0 intermission lead.
All-purpose back Davonte Neal scored three times for Chaparral, on runs of 37 and 3 yards and on a 12-yard pass from Brewer. Neal ran several plays from the quarterback position in the Firebirds’ Wildcat formation. And had 94 yards on the ground on just six carries. As a team, Chaparral had 506 yards of total offense to just 136 for Notre Dame.
For all that went right for Chaparral the complete opposite is true for the Saints (2-4). Notre Dame struggled to move the football against the overlooked Chaparral defense. The Saints had only one first down the entire first half as they looked outclassed in every way. Just another it what has been a painful growing experience for Notre Dame as it has moved up Division II football.
The good news. Notre Dame has a lot of room for growth. The bad. A lot of folks saw the Saints on Friday night with the ESPN2 crew on hand to broadcast the game.
Three weeks ago, Notre Dame got thumped pretty good by Hamilton. The Saints responded with two straight wins. Defensive coordinator Gary Gregory hopes the same thing happens after Friday’s game.
“The coaches and the kids need to be better,” Gregory said. “We’ve been in this position before. We’ll see how we respond.”