The 10U Steelers and Dolphins met in a rematch of the 2015 City Championship Saturday morning at Flowing Wells High School. The Steelers won the 9U championship 25-0 over the Dolphins last November and the result on Saturday was much the same with the Steelers coming away with a 27-0 win.
Jaxson Banhie led the way in November with over 200 yards rushing to go along with four touchdowns and he almost repeated his performance Saturday when he collected 162 yards rushing and three touchdowns.
“We had some good plays and we had some good defense today,” Banhie said. “I think we just need to work hard on the mental aspects because we started out a little intimidated by their big players.”
Both teams struggled in the first quarter but the Steelers broke through after Aaden Haymore came up with a safety on a 7-yard sack in the opening moments of the second quarter to give the Steelers a 2-0 lead. Tre Edminson put the Steelers up 8-0 on a 35-yard dash after the free kick.
Banhie put the Steelers up 14-0 midway through the second on a 17-yard run of his own. The Dolphin defense kept coming and Logan Wertz pounced on a Steeler fumble to stop another drive later in the quarter.
Banhie added a touchdown run of 60 yards (Sergio Pena extra point) and another run of 42 yards to put the Steelers up 27-0 in the third.
Each team struggled in the fourth quarter with the Dolphins forcing two more fumbles with Chance Cassel picking up one and Tyler Cruce falling on another.
Cassel led the Dolphin offense but it was difficult moving the ball against the Steelers. Still, he was happy for the effort his teammates put in and how hard they played to the end.
“We lost to the two hardest teams so far but I love my teammates to death,” Cassel said. “I wouldn’t change them for the world. We just have to keep going.”
Chase Laux, Kayden Luke, Jacob “Bubba” Mustain and Michael “Brody” Jones were just some of the many Dolphins teammates who put in hard work from beginning to end.
Besides the 162 yards from Banhie, Edminson finished with 48 and Joshua Hall added 12. Banhie also threw for 76 yards with Edminson collecting 30 yards receiving and Hall had 19. Haymore and Edminson both recovered an onside kick.
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Andy Morales was recognized by the AIA as the top high school reporter in 2014 and has been a youth, high school and college coach for over 30 years. His own children have won multiple state high school championships and were named to all-state teams. Competing in hockey, basketball, baseball and track & field in high school, his unique perspective can only be found here, on AZPreps365.com and on the pages of the Vail Voice and the Tanque Verde Voice. Contact Andy Morales at AMoralesMyTucson@yahoo.com