Prep football Week 4: rearranging top big-school rankings

We’ve only finished Week 4 of the high school football season, but there was no doubt that at least two of the top-ranked teams in the big-school divisions were about to fall.

That’s because four of the top five teams in Division I were playing against each other.  No. 3 Brophy Prep was the only school not matched up against a Top 5 opponent on Friday – and the results showed it as the Broncos coasted to a 50-0 shutout of Sandra Day O’Connor High School.

At the very top, No. 2 Desert Ridge High School did its best to unseat top-ranked Hamilton High, hoping to avenge its loss to the Huskies in last year’s 5A-I state championship game.

Desert Ridge looked like the team most capable of stopping Hamilton in its annual march to the state title, as the Jaguars had rolled over their first three opponents, piling up a 134-13 point advantage.

But an outstanding defensive effort by Hamilton limited Desert Ridge to just one score – and that was earned by the Jaguars’ defensive unit when Trevor Ramero covered a fumble for a touchdown.

Hamilton’s win streak is now 44 games and counting.

While Desert Ridge didn’t succeed in their effort to derail the Hamilton express, there are other teams waiting in line that might have a chance.  Brophy, which should move up to No. 2 in the Division I rankings, is undefeated and sporting an impressive offense.  No. 4 Basha High School, which is also 4-0 and is averaging over 50 points a game, has beaten some quality teams early in the season.

One of those schools, No. 5 Chandler High, accounts for the other loss by a Top-5 team in Division I last week.  Basha beat the Wolves behind a 400-yard passing performance by its senior quarterback, Kyle Duran.

No one left that game asking for their money back, as both teams marched up and down the Basha football field, eventually combining for 99 points on the night.  Each team combined running and passing in an offensive display that was electrifying.

Chandler’s quarterback, Darell Garretson, put up numbers that rivaled those of Duran.  He threw for 344 yards, but also suffered a couple of interceptions in the 58-41 loss.  One of those killed a potential scoring opportunity, as Bryce Cole picked one off in the end zone.

And there was just as much excitement on the other end of the passes, as Chandler’s Lloyd Mills pulled in four catches for 159 yards and three TDs, and Basha junior receiver, Nate Phillips, ran wild through the Wolves’ secondary, hauling in 12 passes for 213 yards.

The ground game was also hitting on all cylinders.  Paul Perkins accumulated 178 yards rushing for Chandler, including a 65-yard run, while Myles Smith countered with 144 yards for Basha.

Perhaps the most exciting play of the night was the pass from Duran to Keenan Garland that went for 80 yards.

Division III will also have some changes in their Top-5 rankings, as No. 2 Williams Field High School dropped its first game of the season, losing to Canyon del Oro High, 40-21.  And Thunderbird High goes to 2-2 after losing in overtime to Paradise Valley High School, 40-33.

The biggest shocker was probably the Williams Field loss because the Black Hawks had been dominating the opposition to that point, outscoring their first three challengers, 125-9.

But the most impressive win had to belong to Thunderbird since the Chiefs had to claw back from being 26 points in the hole, and then capped the comeback by scoring 10 points in the final minute of regulation to force the overtime.

Upsets are just one reason high school sports are so interesting.  Can’t wait to see what Week 5 brings.