Then there was one; Morenci lone football team left after quarterfinal weekend

The Morenci Wildcats warm up prior to their game against Willcox.

It was a tough weekend for Gila Valley football teams as the quarterfinals weren’t kind to Gila Valley teams.

Three of the four area teams dropped their games on Friday. Morenci is the only area team to make it through to the semi-finals.

In the only 3A game, Thatcher took the opening drive of the game on a 9 play scoring drive to open the game and capped it with a Wyatt Larson to Brandon Napier TD strike to take a 6-0 lead on Snowflake. That woke the Lobos up and they took advantage of four Eagle turnovers to take a 28-6 halftime lead. Thatcher would tack on one more score late but fell to Snowflake 44-13. Thatcher finishes the season with an 8-4 record.

Pima took an 8 point lead into the 4th quarter against Arizona Lutheran but a late turnover was costly for the ‘Riders as the Coyotes scored late in the game to take the win 33-27. The ‘Riders finish the season with a 7-5 record.

Willcox made the long trip to Parker to take on the top ranked Broncs. The Cowboys trailed 22-19 at halftime but Parker used their size to outscore Willcox 14-3 in the second half to take the win 36-22. The Cowboys finish with an 8-3 record.

Morenci had another big night from sensational Sophomore Michael Casillas. He rushed for 212 yards and 3 touchdowns to help the Wildcats fend off a late push from Gilbert Christian to move into the semi-finals with a 35-23 win. The Morenci defense pitched a shutout in the first half but had to hang on as the Knights put up all 23 points in the second half.

#4 Morenci will play #1 Parker at 6pm on Saturday at Desert Vista High School. #3 Benson will take on #2 Arizona Lutheran at 2pm in the first game on the 2A double header.