No. 15 Cienega beat No. 6 Ironwood Ridge 17-25, 27-25, 25-13 and 25-21 Thursday night to stay alive in the 5A Southern Region. The loss dropped the Nighthawks to 11-4 in power-ranking matches and 5-1 in region play while the Bobcats moved to one match back at 10-5 and 5-2.
The Nighthawks have two more region matches scheduled with a trip to No. 16 Marana Mountain View (8-5, 2-3) coming on Tuesday, Oct. 17 followed by a trip to No. 18 Sahuaro (7-5, 2-3) on Thursday, Oct. 19. The Bobcats have one region match remaining, a home-match against No. 31 Buena (4-9, 0-5) on Tuesday, Oct. 24.
Assuming Cienega beats Buena, Ironwood Ridge needs to win both matches to take the region title and the automatic playoff berth that comes with it. The 5A Conference has a play-in tournament so it would be advantageous to finish the regular season ranked in the top eight to avoid the play-in tournament (teams 9-24)…
LION’S DEN SCHEDULE
Lion’s Den Invitational
Oct. 13-14: Marana Mountain View
Friday, Oct. 13
Cesar Chavez vs. Rio Rico, 11 a.m.
Canyon del Oro vs. Thatcher, 11 a.m.
Kofa vs. St. David, 11 a.m.
Catalina vs. Catalina Foothills, 11 a.m.
Cesar Chavez vs. Canyon del Oro, Noon
Rio Rico vs. Thatcher, Noon
Kofa vs. Catalina Foothills, Noon
St. David vs. Catalina, Noon
Mountain View vs. Fountain Hills, 1 p.m.
Buena vs. Amphitheater, 1 p.m.
Pueblo vs. Benson, 1 p.m.
Flagstaff vs. Pima 1 p.m.
St. David vs. Catalina Foothills, 2 p.m.
Tucson vs. Walden Grove, 2 p.m.
Fountain Hills vs. Pueblo, 2 p.m.
Kofa vs. Catalina, 2 p.m.
Rio Rico vs. Canyon del Oro, 3 p.m.
Cesar Chavez vs. Thatcher, 3 p.m.
Amphitheater vs. Pima, 3 p.m.
Buena vs. Flagstaff, 3 p.m.
Amphitheater vs. Flagstaff, 4 p.m.
Tucson vs. Buena, 4 p.m.
Walden Grove vs. Mountain View, 4 p.m.
Buena vs. Pima, 4 p.m.
Tucson vs. Fountain Hills, 5 p.m.
Walden Grove vs. Pueblo, 5 p.m.
Mountain View vs. Benson, 5 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 14
Bracket Play: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Andy Morales was recognized by the AIA as the top high school reporter in 2014 and he was awarded the Ray McNally Award in 2017 and he 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. Andy was named a Local Hero by the Tucson Weekly for 2016. Contact Andy Morales at AMoralesMyTucson@yahoo.com