ELOY — According to the Arizona Interscholastic Association, the playoffs officially began on Friday with the quarterfinals in Class 2A.
For Santa Cruz Valley you wouldn’t know that as the Dust Devils haven’t skipped a beat from when the season first started.
The Dust Devils obliterated their opponent, yet again. This time it was a 55-6 win over Scottsdale Prep.
Santa Cruz coach Rishard Davis said the game plan was simple, “Just do what we do. You know, nothing spectacular.”
Davis elaborated and added that his team was just trying to play disciplined and not shoot themselves in the foot.
The Spartans first play of the game was a pass from quarterback Oscar Frias to Carson Boyll for 7 yards.
It seemed like a good game plan for Scottsdale Prep, as that’s the best way to move the ball against Santa Cruz’s defense, but there still has to be some consistency which the Spartans lacked.
Frias ran the ball for a first down on the next play and Boyll added a 5-yard carry but that would be all the positive yardage the Spartans managed to muster on their first drive as they turned the ball over on downs following an incomplete pass from Frias that was tipped by Diego Castillo-Lopez.
The Dust Devils only needed two plays to score as Hunter Ogle rushed for 18 yards on his first carry and then easily found the end zone and a 36-yard score.
Following a Scottsdale Prep punt, Santa Cruz ran the ball five times as Ogle had a big 19-yard carry and David Avilez rushed for 18 yards before crashing through the Spartans’ defense for the 3-yard touchdown.
Scottsdale Prep’s next drive ended on a Dylan Hukill interception, but the Dust Devils did not manage to score on their drive as they settled for the 27-yard field goal attempt which went wide.
“Coach (William) Askew comes up with a great defensive game plan for us every week and the boys, they’re starting to understand what we’re wanting out of them,” Davis said. “Hats off to him, every weekend he’s watching film trying to figure out how to put our boys in great position.”
The Spartans only score of the game came in the second quarter as Boyll ran 44-yards for the touchdown to make it a 14-6 game.
It only took Santa Cruz one play as Ogle exploded for 73 yards and his second touchdown of the night.
Ogle rushed for 289 yards on 18 carries and three touchdowns.
Frias was picked off again on Scottsdale Prep’s next drive, this time by Ricardo Alaniz. The Dust Devils’ drive ended in another Ogle touchdown, this one a 5-yard carry.
Before the half ended Santa Cruz scored for a fifth time as Alaniz rushed for the 22-yard score.
“I’m glad we’re preforming,” Davis said. I’d like for us to perform this way every game. I’m not going to be selfish and say it’s something we’re doing. Honestly, it’s collectively, the boys are taking the game plan and we’re coming out here and actually trying to do what we practiced throughout the week. It’s just all of us coming together and just trying to do what we set out to do that week.”
The second half began in an uncharacteristic way for the Dust Devils as Ogle fumbled on his first carry of the third quarter and the ball was recovered by Connor Hesse.
The Spartans eventually turned the ball over on downs and Avilez scored on a 13-yard carry to extend Santa Cruz’s lead to 40-6.
Avilez and Alaniz had four carries each and combined for 104 yards.
Frias started Scottsdale Prep’s drive with a 12-yard pass to Boyll and then added a 2-yard carry before he was picked off for the third time, as Dylan Hukill ran it back for the 37-yard touchdown.
Frias threw for 90 yards on 8 of 33 passing. Devon Strader caught four passes from 60 yards.
Boyll finished with 74 rushing yards on six carries.
The Dust Devils then called on Mauricio Lopez as he crashed through for the two-point conversion.
Scottsdale Prep attempted a trick play as they were 20-yards away from the goal line. The coaching staff called over Frias as the ball was snapped and was thrown into the end zone for Frias to catch it, but it was caught by Orlando Davis Jr.
The play was called off as both teams were called for penalties.
The Dust Devils’ final scoring drive of the night was a 24-yard run by Joaquin Jimenez.
Santa Cruz will play St. John’s on Dec. 5 at Higley High School in Gilbert.