On a chilly Saturday afternoon in Gilbert, Yuma Catholic came into its quarterfinal matchup with Scottsdale Christian expecting a battle.
Instead, the fifth-seeded Shamrocks blew a close game open and handled the fourth seeded Eagles, 79-39, at Williams Field High School.
The defending Division V champions from Yuma trailed SCA 13-0 early in the first quarter. From there is was all Shamrocks as Scottsdale Christian could not figure out a way to stop the potent Yuma Catholic's running game led by Kody Hazlett.
Hazlett finished the first half with 200 yards rushing on 23 carries with five touchdowns as the Shamrocks led 52-19 at the break.
“Their offensive line played great tonight," Scottsdale Christian coach Willie Dudley said. "That was the difference in the game. They made great blocks and Hazlett is a great player.”
The second half was more of the same. The Shamrocks (11-1) scored three more touchdowns in the third quarter including a 30-yard scoring run by Hazlett, which was his sixth of the game.
“The o’line was doing their job tonight. They made it easy for me.” Hazlett said.
Yuma Catholic finished the afternoon with 681 yards of total offense, 364 of which came on the ground.
Hazlett finished his day with 27 carries for 256 yards with six touchdowns. The Shamrocks, despite a nearly four-hour drive from Yuma, looked like the better prepared team. After falling behind early, they never looked back.
“We travel really well. Our coach’s make us come up a night early and it really helps us out I think.” Hazlett said.
For the Eagles (9-2) it was a great season. After losing in the first round of the playoffs last season, an impressive feat after starting 2011 with an 0-3 mark, Scottsdale Christian returned to the quarterfinals and never gave up, even when the outcome was well out of reach.
Quarterback Luke O’Neill finished the afternoon 16-of-31 passing for 237 yards with two touchdown passes. He also rushed the ball 11 times for 78 yards and two touchdowns.
Three interceptions, however, marred his afternoon as Yuma Catholic forced four turnovers.
The Shamrocks will face the winner of the Phoenix Northwest Christian and St. Johns game next Saturday at 7 p.m. at Arcadia High School.
Yuma Catholic 79, Scottsdale Christian 39
SCA 13 6 6 14 -- 39
YC 21 31 21 6 -- 79
First downs: YC 19, SCA 18
Rushes-yards: YC 39-364, SCA 29-221
Passing yards: YC 317, SCA 237
COMP-ATT-INT: YC 9-14-1, SCA 16-31-3
Fumbles-lost: YC 1-0, SCA 2-1
Penalties-yards: YC 8-80, SCA 7-80
SCA - Gatling 12 run (kick blocked)
SCA - Dudley 78 INT return (Dunn kick)
YC - Hazlett 1 run (kick failed)
YC - Hampton 62 pass from Cleary (Determan run)
YC - Hazlett 31 run (O. Rodriguez kick)
SCA - O'Neill 7 run (pass failed)
YC - Hazlett 1 run (O. Rodriguez kick)
YC - Safety
YC - Hazlett 42 run (Determan run)
YC - Hazlett 12 run (O. Rodriguez kick)
YC - Determan 60 pass from Cleary (O. Rodriguez kick)
YC - Cabralles 28 pass from Cleary (O. Rodriguez kick)
YC - Hazlett 30 run (O. Rodriguez kick)
SCA - O'Neill 10 run (pass failed)
YC - C. Rodriguez 54 run (O. Rodriguez kick)
SCA - Kaites 48 pass from O'Neill (run failed)
YC - Moreno 1 run (kick failed)
SCA - Kaites 16 catch from O'Neill (O'Neill run)