Clearing chaos left behind by lightning - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Sports

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Clearing chaos left behind by lightning

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Posted: Saturday, September 10, 2011 11:11 pm

Chaos came, and now comes the attempt to restore order.

There hasn't been a widespread weather wipeout around these parts in at least a few years (and even those weren't so widespread). Umbrellas and parkas were flying out faster than people could run to their cars. The startling lightning shows were a sight to see from afar, and miserable for those trying to get a football game completed in timely fashion.

As weather always does here, no matter how severe or significant it affects the grand scheme, it causes logistical messes to times, schedules, transportation and logistics. Probably because Friday night scenes happen so rarely.

Trying to sort out doppler radars, logistics and the letter of the law led to mass confusion, so, bleary-eyed and equally lost in the head, The Flashback called Chuck Schmidt, Chief Operating Officer at the Arizona Interscholastic Association, for some clarifications based on the National Federation of State High School Associations rules.

There are three options for situations such as Friday night: (1) The game is resumed at a later date from the exact point in which it was suspended (which is what Higley-Poston Butte and Apache Junction-Shadow Ridge did Saturday and what Paradise Valley-Peoria Liberty is trying to figure out going forward). (2) One team forfeits the game to the other team. (3) The game is cancelled and each teams counting power ranked games is reduced by one (for most teams that would be nine games instead of 10).

The most important one is this: All games which didn't complete four quarters of action, and were agreed upon between both teams and the referees to be called Friday night and not be finished at a later date, is a forfeit. That means, the team that was leading at the time of the decision officially wins 1-0.

The "winning" team in a forfeit receives the same number of power points and will receive future power points from that school's opponents (and opponent's opponents) exactly the same as if it were a normal, completed game.

The "losing" team in the forfeit will also receive opponents (and opponent's opponents) victory points as usual.

The difference being official stats in the game don't count since it wasn't a completed game, and while that will no doubt ruffle feathers, the win/loss and power points should be far more pressing an issue from a competitive standpoint.

A few games, such as Higley-Poston Butte and Apache Junction-Shadow Ridge, were completed Saturday. Those games, and any others completed this season at a later date TBD, are wins and losses like any other game, with all records and stats counting as usual.

So everyone will either receive a win, a loss or will try and make up its games at a later date (speaking of logistical nightmares). If none of those happened or will happen, each team can have their power point games reduced by one game.

Now that that's settled, let's never have to deal with Mother Nature's wrath again.


A juicy lineup awaits, so this better go off without a hitch (we're looking at you Mother Nature).

What better way to kickstart Week 4 than with Chandler matching up with school-district neighbor Basha. These two uber-successful programs have somehow never met in the regular season, and it should be a dandy with both sides fielding plenty of big-time athletes and skill on both sides of the ball. Oh, and they both happen to be undefeated.

It'd be hard to call that game an appetizer to anything in the state, but it's true thanks to Friday's rematch of last year's 5A Division I state championship game between Hamilton and Desert Ridge (and possible preview for this year's Divison I title tilt). Most figure the Jaguars have the best chance of snapping the Huskies' 43-game winning streak, at least until Hamilton plays Basha and Chandler down the road.

Those two games will easily be the biggest of the season to date, but if you want to avoid the massive crowds, you're in luck.

More intra-city bragging rights and a big leg up go to the winner between Gilbert and Mesquite, one that's pretty even if Steven Bevan can return to action for Mesquite after a concussion two weeks ago. Sagging Mesa and sagging Red Mountain renew its rivalry.

Seton Catholic is rolling in its new home in Division IV but San Tan Foothills will be the Sentinels best competition so far. Williams Field travels to Tucson and go against Oro Valley Canyon del Oro. Even Gilbert Christian gets a big test in Div. VI against Valley Lutheran.

Thumbs Up

Chandler defense: Technically the stats from Friday night's game against Mesquite don't officially count, yada, yada, yada. And it was Mesquite playing with its backup quarterback (followed by no quarterback). And two of these games were against weak competition. And the Wolves still haven't had anyone play more than two full quarters in game. But they haven't given up a point this season through three weeks. That's probably going to change next week against Basha, but stop with the 15-yard penalties and the sky's the limit.

Poston Butte: It took two days, a big night from the special teams and a whole series of strange plays and decisions during Higley's furious rally when the game resumed Saturday morning, but Poston Butte still beat a good Knights team on the road, through piles of adversity. More to come, however, for Mike De La Torre's Broncos, who have to finish their Week 1 game against Flagstaff on Sept. 19 after it was halted when an electrical transformer blew. At least the Broncos now know they can overcome themselves and the elements.

Thumbs Down

Common Sense: Several from the Desert Vista and Mountain Pointe student sections showed they have none with their adolescent embarrassments displayed multiple times during the Ahwatukee Bowl. Push, shove and fight who you want, but it only leaves you as an idiot by unanimous decision.

Mountain Pointe offense: When there wasn't lightning or morons-gone-wild, give it up for Desert Vista for its convincing performance and sticking it to The Pride. Mountain Pointe mirrored Red Mountain in terms of one-dimensional nothingness on offense. There's lots of talent on Knox Road, but if Mountain Pointe can't find an effective run/pass ratio (and that's not easy to find when your original-returning quarterback Kyle Faunce doesn't return), it's a rough road ahead.


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Jason P. Skoda
  • Jason P. Skoda
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  • Resident sports writer at the Ahwatukee Foothills News

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