Chandler, Hamilton top seeds in Open Division The Chandler Arizonan

Chandler, Hamilton top seeds in Open Division

December 1st, 2020 Chandler Arizona Staff
Chandler, Hamilton top seeds in Open Division
Sports
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By Zach Alvira
Arizonan Sports Editor

The 2020 football season is nearing its conclusion – a feat many might deem incredible, given the uncertain circumstances the pandemic created.

Nearly every Chandler program finished their entire schedules without COVID-19 issues, though some teams were forced to play fewer games.

Still, Chandler is once again represented well in the playoffs – especially the Open Division.

Teams were able to schedule a “bowl game” after the regular season concluded. Here’s how each Chandler football team fared in the COVID-shortened 2020 regular season.

Chandler

Chandler squared off against Hamilton in the regular-season finale on ESPN2, winning a close matchup between two of the state’s best programs.

The win solidified the four-time defending champions spot at the top of the Open Division. The No. 5 nationally ranked Wolves were to face No. 8 Desert Edge in the opening round of the Open playoffs Friday.

Hamilton

Hamilton came into the Open Division playoffs as the second-ranked team after the close loss to Chandler in the Battle for Arizona Avenue.

Despite the loss, Hamilton is still ranked in the top-25 nationally. The Huskies made their second consecutive trip to the Open Division and were to face No. 7 Corona del Sol in the opening round.

Basha

Basha, led by freshman quarterback Demond Williams, lost the first two games of the season then went on to win six straight. The Bears are set up to become an Open Division contender next season, but for not will enjoy their No. 6 ranking in the 6A playoffs.

The Bears were to travel to face No. 3 Sandra Day O’Connor in the first round last Friday.

Casteel

Casteel appeared to be on its way to contend for a spot in the Open Division before losing three straight games in the middle of the season.

The Colts managed to bounce back against Desert Ridge and finished the season with a win over Red Mountain to claim the 6A Fiesta Region title. At 5-3, the Colts were placed in the playoffs at No. 5 and slated to play a tough No. 4 Highland team Friday.

Perry

COVID-19 issues forced Perry to cancel two of its games this season. The Pumas struggled all year after losing a large senior class from the 2019 team.

Their loss to Basha Nov. 20 to finish the regular season gave them an 0-6 record. It was the first time in program history the Pumas finished the season winless.

Seton Catholic

Seton Catholic secured its first victory of the season on Friday, Nov. 20 over Coronado. The Sentinels struggled to find a rhythm on both sides of the ball and faced tough 4A competition throughout the season.

It’s the first time Seton Catholic finished the regular season winless since 1987.

Arizona College Prep

Arizona College Prep, which won just one game two seasons ago, finished the 2020 season as the 3A Metro East Region champions and faced off against Thatcher in the conference play-in tournament.

The Knights lost a close battle to the Eagles, cutting their season short of expectations with a 5-3 record. However, coach Myron Blueford has the Knights on the right track as they prepare to move to their new campus.

Valley Christian

Valley Christian has long been one of the premier programs at the 3A level, even when losing large senior classes filled with talented players.

This year was no exception, as the Trojans advanced to the 3A play-in tournament as the No. 8 seed and faced ninth-ranked Round Valley.

The game came down to the wire and it was the Elks who were able to knock off the Trojans, ending their season with a 6-2 record.

Chandler Prep

Chandler Prep figured to make a deep run in this year’s 2A Conference playoffs with father-son coaching duo Josh and Tom Brittain leading the charge.

A talented young core group of athletes helped the Titans advance to the play-in tournament with a 4-1 record after COVID-19 issues forced cancellations.

Chandler Prep took on a tough St. Johns team and fell by a touchdown, ending their season and championship hopes. 

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