DV's Hinds, players will always be known as state champions - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Sports

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DV's Hinds, players will always be known as state champions

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Posted: Monday, December 19, 2011 12:00 pm

In this world, where social media websites are at everyone's finger tips, status changes happen all of the time.

It's a little harder to change someone's status in the real world.

Even so, Dan Hinds managed to do just that. All it took was a perfect game by his players in the Division I state championship game. But it happened.

He went from a good coach who won 63 percent (81-47) of his games in 11 seasons to one who is being fitted for a ring.

It led to Hinds being named the Tribune Coach of the Year after guiding the Thunder to one of the state's biggest upsets when third-seeded Desert Vista whipped No. 1 Hamilton, which entered the game on a 53-game winning streak that included the last three big-school state titles, 45-19.

"It was all about timing and they put it all together when it mattered most," Hinds said. "We played some really good games, but never put together a game for all four quarters until the Hamilton game."

The Thunder have been on a pretty good run since 2007, making three semifinal appearances, twice making the finals but nothing compares to a Gatorade bath, raising the golden ball championship trophy above your head and being carried on top of his players' shoulders toward the Thunder's fans while they are going ballistic.

"It is still hard to put into words," Hinds said. "For all of the hard work to pay off, and see the kids and coaches so happy, will be unforgettable. It was incredible."

Hinds wasn't the only one honored by the Tribune as Thunder offensive lineman J.J. Dielman, linebacker Mike Arredondo, and punter Eric Camarillo were named first team.

Mountain Pointe punt returner Dillan Johnson, who had took two back to the house this season, was a first-team pick.

The Thunder's Nick Farina, a junior safety, was the area's lone second-team honoree.

The 6-foot-5, 260-pound Dielman was a mainstay on the Thunder's offensive line as a tackle and helped Desert Vista run for 3,044 yards, the second most in school history.

"I had some pretty high expectations as the only starting senior lineman," said Dielman who, according to Hinds, has decided on Utah as his college of choice, and is the cousin of NFL lineman Kris Dielman. "I wanted to set an example and make sure we were always ready to play."

Hinds said having Dielman up front made the offense what it was.

"He was the heart and soul of our line and the OLine was the heart and soul of the offense," Hinds said. "He showed incredible leadership. He's a super nice kid, but when he puts a helmet on he switches over and loves knocking people down."

Arredondo was one of the team's emotional leaders. His style of play and his toughness epitomized what the Thunder was about.

The 6-foot-2, 218-pound middle linebacker averaged 11.1 tackles a game with three sacks.

"It was so rewarding to see how this group finished as seniors and Mike led the whole show," Hinds said. "He took charge of everything, including making sure kids made good decisions on Saturday nights. He was a coach's dream."

Camarillo came into his own this season averaging a state-best 41.43 yards per attempt, including a season best of 55 yards, and placed six inside the opponent's 20-yard line.

"He is a three-year starter that really put it together," Hinds said. "He might have been the happiest kid when we won the championship and he never punted. It's just the type of kid he is."

Contact writer: (480) 898-7915 or jskoda@ahwatukee.com. Follow him on Twitter @JSkodaAFN.

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Jason P. Skoda
  • Jason P. Skoda
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