No. 6 Salpointe beat No. 4 Greenway, 3-1 (25-23, 20-25, 25-21, 25-16) Wednesday night to win the 4A state championship held at Mountain Pointe High School in Phoenix. As noted here first, the win breaks a 23-year drought from Southern Arizona in the “Big School” category.
Legendary Rincon/University head coach Juanita Kingston led the Rangers to a state championship in 1993 but the Rangers were unable to repeat the following year. Five other teams from Southern Arizona have tried to get over the hump since then:
SOUTHERN ARIZONA RUNNER-UP FINISHES
2014: Ironwood Ridge (Division II)
2008: Amphitheater (4A-II)
2004: Ironwood Ridge (4A)
2001: Catalina Foothills (4A)
1997: Sabino (4A)
1994: Rincon (4A)
Even more remarkable, Salpointe (33-8) had previously played for one state championship in girls’ volleyball and that was in 1970 – 47 years ago under Waldine Cormier. Current head coach Heather-Moore Martin has had a lot of personal success at the “lower divisions” before moving over to Salpointe from Catalina High School in 2014.
WEDNESDAY NOV. 9
4A VOLLEYBALL CHAMPIONSHIP at Mountain Pointe
No. 6 Salpointe beat No. 4 Greenway, 3-1 (25-23, 20-25, 25-21, 25-16)
THURSDAY NOV. 10
4A FOOTBALL QUARTERFINALS
No. 4 Salpointe hosts No. 5 Marcos de Niza, 7 p.m.
No. 6 Catalina Foothills at No. 3 Sunrise Mountain, 7 p.m.
5A FOOTBALL QUARTERFINALS
No. 1 Cienega hosts No. 9 Mesquite, 7 p.m.
No. 3 Ironwood Ridge hosts No. 6 Queen Creek, 7 p.m.
No. 7 Marana at No. 2 Williams Field, 7 p.m.
SATURDAY NOV. 12
2A FOOTBALL QUARTERFINALS
No. 2 Santa Cruz hosts No. 10 Scottsdale Christian, 6 p.m.
No. 3 Thatcher hosts No. 6 Phoenix Christian, 6 p.m.
No. 5 Benson at No. 4 Pima, 6 p.m.
3A FOOTBALL QUARTERFINALS
No. 5 Sabino hosts No. 13 Winslow, 6 p.m.
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 and on AZPreps365.com. Contact Andy Morales at AMoralesMyTucson@yahoo.com