Cimarron-Memorial High School football coach John Parcells has watched his players mature over the past several weeks, so he was careful not to panic when his squad fell behind by two touchdowns in the first quarter Friday.
Parcells’ faith was rewarded, as his team methodically stormed back to stun visiting Cheyenne 21-14.
Derek Morefield completed 13 of 24 passes for 189 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Spartans, and he gave his team the lead for good with a 4-yard TD pass to Rasaan Mills late in the third quarter.
“The guys pulled themselves out of that hole,” Parcells said. “I don’t think they realized how good they can be. If you deal with adversity well, the sky’s the limit.”
That adversity came as the result of 8-yard TD runs by Jordan Johnson and Zavieh Harrell in the first quarter that gave the Desert Shields a 14-0 lead and all the momentum.
“Cheyenne has a lot of speed,” Parcells explained. “When you face that double-wing offense with that speed, there is always going to be an adjustment period, so we were not worried.”
Cimarron started its first drive of the second quarter with good field position, and a 23-yard pass from Morefield to Joe Tito set up a 14-yard scoring run by Morefield to cut the deficit to 14-6 with 9:44 left in the first half.
The Spartans scored again on their next position when Morefield threw a screen to Mills, who sprinted down the right sideline for a TD. A two-point conversion made it 14-14 at halftime.
Cimarron’s defense allowed the Desert Shields just 36 offensive yards in the second half, and the Spartans completed their rally with Morefield’s second TD pass to Mills with 3:48 left in the third.
“The thing I liked about that play is that it wasn’t there right away,” Parcells said. “Our receivers made some route adjustments, and our quarterback bought some time. We’ve been working on plays like that.”
Cheyenne managed to get into Cimarron-Memorial territory late in the fourth quarter, but the Spartans squelched the drive at their 24-yard line.
Maurice Bennett rushed 21 times for 99 yards for Cimarron-Memorial. Mills caught four passes for 73 yards, and Tito had five receptions for 72 yards.
David Walker carried 17 times for 65 yards to lead Cheyenne.
Liberty 42, Basic 12 — At Basic, Calvin Tubbs and Dhamany Whittle returned interceptions for touchdowns for the Patriots, who forced four turnovers and held the Wolves to 121 yards of offense.
Tubbs grabbed his interception and raced 39 yards for the score with eight seconds left in the first quarter to put Liberty in command 21-0.
Whittle’s pick-six went for 22 yards and extended Liberty’s lead to 35-6 in the third quarter.
Jake DeDeaux also snared an interception for Liberty, which also two sacks.
Receiver Ethan Deadeaux hauled in five receptions for 131 yards, including a 54-yard TD reception in the first quarter for the Patriots.
Ethan Tuilagi led the Patriots on the ground, scoring on a 44-yard run up the middle in the second quarter. He finished with 82 yards on eight carries.
Bryan Roland had a 59-yard punt return for a score for Liberty.
Dallon Ellett had a 56-yard fumble return and an interception for Basic.
— Tim Guesman
Del Sol 14, Valley 12 — At Valley, the Dragons rushed for 271 yards and denied a two-point conversion with fewer than 10 seconds to play to hold on.
Daniel Tyus opened the scoring with a 2-yard run, and Jay Peete added a 1-yard TD plunge as Del Sol took a 14-0 lead into the fourth quarter.
The Vikings’ Iyen Medlock found Kyler Jackson in the end zone for a 5-yard touchdown to cut the lead t0 eight. Valley then forced a fumble while the Dragons were trying to run out the clock with less than two minutes to play.
Medlock scored on a 17-yard run with just eight seconds remaining, but his two-point conversion pass fell incomplete.
— Adam Berchin
Sierra Vista 57, Sunrise Mountain 24 — At Sunrise Mountain, the visiting Mountain Lions ran roughshod over the Miners, rushing for almost 400 total yards. Led by Maliek Broady’s 127 yards and touchdown, Sierra Vista scored three times in the first quarter and never looked back.
The Mountain Lions’ offense was bolstered by touchdown runs from Daniel Godfrey, Andrew Peterson, Quinton Stubbs, Randal Grimes and Brandon Cruz. Broady also ran back an interception 30 yards early in the third quarter.
Sunrise Mountain scored on two short TD passes in the closing minutes.
— Mike Sloan
Desert Pines 48, Desert Oasis 0 — At Desert Oasis, sophomore quarterback Marckell Grayson threw for 344 yards and four touchdowns as the Jaguars (1-0) routed the Diamondbacks (0-1).
Grayson, who was making his first varsity start at quarterback, also rushed for 42 yards and scored a touchdown.
Desert Pines lost four key skill-position players from last season’s team that lost to eventual state champion Faith Lutheran in the 1A quarterfinals, but the Jaguars quickly served notice they have reloaded.
After the Jaguars’ first drive ended with an interception, Desert Pines’ defense forced a three-and-out. Seven plays later, the Jaguars got on the scoreboard when sophomore running back Isaiah Morris scored on a 27-yard run. Morris finished with 54 yards and two touchdowns on five carries. He also caught two passes for 75 yards and a score.
Grayson hit senior receiver Jon McCoy for a 34-yard score one play after a fumble recovery to make it 14-0. After the Diamondbacks put together a 15-play drive that stalled on the Jaguars’ 24-yard line, Desert Pines drove 76 yards on 11 plays, increasing its lead to 21-0 on a 3-yard run by Morris.
The Diamondbacks fumbled the ensuing kickoff, and the Jaguars put away the game when Grayson hit Morris on a 50-yard touchdown pass.
— Robert Horne
Virgin Valley 41, Western 13 — Senior tailback Junior Paongo rushed for 106 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Bulldogs.
Paongo scored on runs of 16, 19 and 4 yards as Virgin Valley shut out Western 19-0 in the second half to pull away.
Kenric Davis raced down the right sideline for a 71-yard score on the first play from scrimmage for the Warriors. Paongo’s 16-yard score tied it at 7-7, and that was followed by a recovery of a high snap on a punt attempt in the end zone by Virgin Valley’s Chase Henderson.
The Warriors responded with a 92-yard TD reception by Miles Snyder from quarterback Wyatt Rozea to cut the deficit to 15-13.
Virgin Valley quarterback Jarron Linge plunged in from 2 yards out to push the lead to 22-13 at half.
After Paongo scored twice for the Bulldogs in the second half, Josh Bishop added an 8-yard TD run around the right end to cap the scoring.
Virgin Valley’s defense tallied four fumble recoveries, 10 sacks and an interception.
Davis finished with 132 yards on 18 carries and two fumble recoveries on defense for Western, while Rozea threw for 162 yards and supplied an interception on defense.
— Brennan Karle
Desert Hills (Utah) 41, Foothill 0 — At Foothill, Desert Hills turned three second-quarter Foothill turnovers into 20 points and never looked back.
Already leading, 7-0, the Thunder (2-0) recovered a Justice Jackson fumble at the Desert Hills 40. Four plays later, quarterback Nick Warmsley found Mason Palmer for an 18-yard score and a 13-0 Desert Hills lead.
On the next offensive play, Foothill quarterback Devon Mueller was intercepted by Nephi Sewell, who raced 36 yards untouched for the touchdown. Hunter Spray tacked on the PAT, and in a 17-second span, the Thunder lead grew from seven to 20-0.
Late in the half, Jackson would fumble again following a 17-yard run, and Desert Hills took over at the Falcons’ 19. Two plays later, Cowdin Bridger scored from 3 yards out, and the Thunder led 27-0 at halftime.
In the opening 12 minutes, Desert Hills held Foothill to only three first downs and 48 total yards.
Warmsley finished with 132 yards passing and three touchdowns and rushed for 57 yards and a score.
Bridger rushed for 148 yards, 99 in the first half. Bridger also caught a 40-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter.
Foothill (0-1) finished with 104 yards of offense, 37 on the ground. Nick Gardner came on in the second half and completed 6 of 15 passes for 56 yards.
— Sam Leeper
Pahrump Valley 40, Bonanza 7 — At Pahrump, Jeremiah England caught a touchdown pass and rushed for two more as Pahrump Valley cruised to a season-opening win.
England had a 17-yard touchdown reception in the second quarter and rushed for 25- and 18-yard touchdowns during the third quarter to put the Trojans up 28-0.
Keenan Harris added 111 yards on seven carries, including a 53-yard touchdown run in the first quarter. TJ Milk threw for 66 yards on 5-of-9 passing.
Tommy Gascoigne and Devlin Dillion each added TD runs for Pahrump Valley.
Clark 26, Boulder City 22 — At Boulder City, Nick Kinnard’s 8-yard touchdown pass to Andre Turner midway through the fourth quarter lifted the Chargers by the Eagles.
Ty’Rek Wells rushed for two touchdowns, and Amir Boone hauled in a TD pass from Kinnard for Clark.
Milan Dixon racked up 124 yards on 14 carries for the Chargers.
Trenton Carmell rushed for one touchdown and threw for another for Boulder City.
Moapa Valley 19, Spring Valley 6 — At Overton, Zach Hymas completed 18 of 29 passes for 270 yards and two TDs to lead the Pirates over the Grizzlies.
Hymas had a 20-yard TD pass to R.J. Hubert to open the scoring and added a 14-yard TD pass to Jay Mortensen in the fourth quarter to seal it.
Hubert finished with seven catches for 109 yards. Kaleb Bodily rushed for 84 yards, including a 4-yard TD run, for Moapa Valley.
Cole Mulcock added three catches for 71 yards for the Pirates.
Christian Tasi had a 4-yard scoring pass to Drazen Tojic in the fourth quarter to account for Spring Valley’s scoring.
Pine View (Utah) 42, Agassi Prep 7 — At Rancho, senior quarterback Kody Wilstead threw for 166 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Panthers.
The Panthers (1-0) took control early, scoring on their second possession when Wilstead connected with junior receiver Steve Bangerter for a 6-0 lead.
The Panthers also ran the ball effectively led by running back Pano Tiatia, who rushed for 56 yards in the first half including a 14-yard touchdown run that gave the Panthers a 14-0 lead at halftime. Tiatia finished with 106 rushing yards.
The Panthers padded their lead in the third quarter, scoring on Wilstead touchdown passes of 43 and 13 yards to wide receiver Blake Ence and Tiatia’s second touchdown run, a 23-yarder. Both of Wilstead scoring passes followed interceptions, and the Panthers led 35-0 after three quarters.
Reserve quarterback Riley Livingston completed a 3-yard touchdown pass to running back Jaden Peterson to give the Panthers a 42-0 lead in the middle of the fourth quarter.
The Stars avoided the shutout on an 11-yard touchdown run by Stephan Laushaul, who finished with 58 yards rushing. Kobe Williams led Agassi Prep (0-1) with 98 yards rushing, most during the fourth quarter.
— Ron Harris
Viewpoint School (Calif.) 48, The Meadows 28 — Senior Bryson Navallo had 21 carries for 117 yards and two touchdowns and threw a 30-yard TD pass, but The Meadows fell to host Viewpoint School (Calif.).
Navallo scored on a 3-yard plunge in the first quarter and added a 24-yarder early in the third to give the Mustangs their only lead at 20-14.
Viewpoint School then scored three consecutive touchdowns on passes by Zach Chulak to take a 35-20 lead entering the fourth quarter. Chulak finished with four TD passes for the Patriots.
The Meadows trimmed the lead to 35-28 in the fourth, on a 30-yard halfback option TD pass by Navallo to Adam Martinez, but never got closer.
Martinez finished with two receptions for 60 yards, and Michael Jin added five catches for 67 yards and a score.
Quarterback Jacob Gleason was 10-for-21 for 180 yards and a TD for The Meadows.
Viewpoint School’s Dominick Brown had nine carries for 135 yards and a TD and added two receiving scores. Devin Douglas and Chandler Gee each had kickoff returns for the Patriots.
Mountain View 36, Mohave Accelerated (Ariz.) 6 — In Arizona, Ian Locke was 6-for-13 passing for 127 yards and three touchdowns and rushed 14 times for 182 yards to lead the Saints.
Locke connected with Connor LeBoeuf on three touchdown passes. LeBoeuf finished with five receptions for 125 yards.
Senior running back Bernard Williams broke a 75-yard run and finished with six carries for 103 yards.
Paul Muehleisen led Mountain View with nine tackles.
Sandy Valley 62, Victor Valley Christian (Calif.) 6 — At California, senior James Rau had four total touchdowns to lead the Sidewinders by the Royals.
Brothers Lane and Brandon Eastham threw for two TDs apiece. Lane Eastham also added an interception for Sandy Valley, which got 121 yards rushing from Garrett Sellers.
Logan Shelton, Nick Dresden and Zachery Miller all had receiving touchdowns, and Alexis Fajardo had 12 tackles and a sack on defense for the Sidewinders.
Sandy Valley led 24-0 after the first quarter and 40-6 at halftime.
Kingman Academy (Ariz.) 35, Laughlin 6 — At Kingman, Ariz., the Tigers rolled past the Cougars in the opener for both schools.
Robert Osuna’s touchdown run accounted for Laughlin’s scoring.