Wk 8 in prep football: scoring is going through the roof

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                </div>  Didja see the basketball game last week when Higley High School beat Apache Junction High, 95-75? No wait, that was football. The combined 170 points was expected to turn […]<!-- AddThis Sharing Buttons below -->
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Didja see the basketball game last week when Higley High School beat Apache Junction High, 95-75?

No wait, that was football.

The combined 170 points was expected to turn up as a state record, as Apache Junction ran up 1,049 all-purpose yards in a losing effort and Higley piled up 872 total yards to earn one of the craziest victories of all time.  Prior to the game, both yardage totals would have qualified as state records.

It was 47-43 at halftime, the kind of score that would normally be put in the stats book after the entire game has been played.

As would be expected, individual numbers were through the roof.  Higley’s sophomore quarterback, Mason Crossland, threw for 638 yards and nine touchdowns (to tie another state record).  His counterpart on the AJ side, Adam Abbataocola, passed for 565 yards on a 38-for-59 performance.  Higley had three receivers with over 100 yards – Trent Gilbert (235), Bryce Gilbert (167) and Bayley Cook (143) – and James Garcia added another 149 rushing and scored four touchdowns on the ground.

This kind of wild scoring didn’t start just this year.  It’s been building.

Last year, Marcos de Niza High School in Tempe started the season 3-0, but was able to do it despite the fact that their opponents hung 155 points on them during that span.  At the time, Marcos head coach Roy Lopez told Scott Bordow in his Arizona Republic column how frustrating it was to have to put up bigger and bigger numbers to win games.

“But I guess these days they’re going to score – so you better score more,” Lopez told Bordow.

In response, Bordow predicted: “But 50- and 60-point games will soon become so commonplace they won’t shock the senses.”

Apparently, that time has arrived as this year’s schedules are littered with those kinds of scores.

And tonight might be one of the best Fridays of the entire season to be able to catch some of the fireworks, particularly in some critical match-ups in Division I and Division III.

In the key Division I game of the night, unbeaten Boulder Creek High School in Anthem will host Scottsdale’s Horizon High.  Boulder Creek is ranked No. 6 in the division and is unbeaten after seven games and Horizon is No. 8 and has just one loss. Horizon has scored 60 or more points in three games this season, has 350 total points so far, and averages 50 points a game.  Boulder Creek has scored 25 or more points in every one of its games.

In Division III, the game between unbeaten teams finds 7-0 Moon Valley High traveling to 7-0 Alhambra High in west Phoenix – and, despite their records, neither team is listed in The Republic‘s Top 10.  But both can move the football and put scads of points on the board.

Alhambra has scored 50 or more points in five games and 60 or more in two games.  Moon Valley is averaging 44 points and has never scored fewer than 30 points in a game.

And the one to watch in the East Valley is at Queen Creek High School where the No. 2-ranked Bulldogs will host No. 5 Williams Field High School.  Both teams have scored 50 or more points twice this season; the fewest points Williams Field has collected in any game is 31 points, while Queen Creek has put up 34 or more in every one of their games.

All three games could produce the kind of fireworks that fans love.  But likely nothing to compare with last week’s record-setting 170 points.

And this week it doesn’t appear that either Higley or Apache Junction is going to have the opportunity for a repeat of last week.  Higley plays McClintock High, which is 2-5 on the season, averages just over 11 points a game, and has been shut out three times.  AJ has it even easier as the Prospectors host winless South Mountain High School, which has been able get on the scoreboard in just two of the eight games it has played so far – and has allowed its opponents to average 60 points a game.

Of course, surprises can happen in high-school football – in fact, they’re the norm.  After all, Apache Junction went into last week’s barn-burner as a 2-4 team — and came out with a state record.

So you just never know…