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FOOTBALL: Salpointe vs. Saguaro; Southern Arizona Championship History

Fox Sports Arizona interviewed Dennis Bene along with Salpointe QB Andrew Cota and State Player of the Year Cam Denson after the 2013 state championship (Andy Morales/AllSportsTucson.com)

4A CHAMPIONSHIP at ARIZONA STADIUM: Friday, Nov. 30

No. 1 Salpointe vs. No. 2 Saguaro, 7 p.m.

A Salpointe/Saguaro final this year was almost predetermined. The 4A State Championship game set for Friday, Nov. 30 at the University of Arizona Stadium between the top two programs in the conference was the one consensus prediction made among all the various media outlets and hardcore experts.

The Lancers have a 21-2 record in the 4A Conference dating back to the 2016 season with the two setbacks coming against Saguaro. The Sabercats beat Salpointe 24-3 in the 2016 semifinals and 28-7 in the 2017 championship game.

The two wins over the Lancers are part of a 49-0 run against teams from Arizona dating back to early September of 2015 and it’s all part of a streak of five straight championships and the 11th overall. Jason Mohns is now 85-10 since taking the Saguaro program over in 2010 and Dennis Bene has 173 wins with Salpointe including the 2013 state champion, also played at Arizona Stadium.

SOUTHERN ARIZONA CHAMPIONSHIPS

Tucson High (14)
1912: (James Fred “Pop” McKale)
1929: (Charles McFarland)
1937: (Rollin T. Gridley)
1942: (Rollin T. Gridley)
1943: (Rollin T. Gridley)
1944: (Rollin T. Gridley)
1945: (Rollin T. Gridley)
1951: (Jason Greer)
1952: (Jason Greer)
1965: 5A (John Mallamo)
1966: 5A (John Mallamo)
1970: 5A (Ollie Mayfield)
1971: 5A (Ollie Mayfield)

St. David (8)
1960: 1A (Jim Crawford)
1972: 1A (Jim Crawford)
1977: 1A (Jim Crawford)
1979: 1A (Jim Crawford)
1997: 1A (John Bryant)
1998: 1A (John Bryant)
2000: 1A (John Bryant)
2001: 1A (John Bryant)

Santa Cruz (7)
1965: 3A (Lonnie Foster)
1966: 3A (Lonnie Foster)
1969: 3A (Lonnie Foster)
1978: 3A (Jay Denton)
1979: 3A (Eddie Jones)
1980: 3A (Jim Ewan)
1990: 2A (Jay Denton)

Canyon del Oro (3)
1976: 4A (Bob Smith)
1977: 4A (Bob Smith)
2009: 4A-I (Dusty Peace)

Marana (3)
1964: 2A (Duane Morrison)
1967: 2A (Don Hawkins)
1968: 2A (Don Hawkins)

Patagonia (3)
1987: 1A (Bill House)
1988: 1A (Bill House)
1991: 1A (Bill House)

Sabino (3)
1990: 4A (Jeff Scurran)
1992: 4A (Jeff Scurran)
1998: 4A (Jeff Scurran)

Valley Union (3)
1985: 1A (Gary Mauldin)
1986: 1A (Gary Mauldin)
2007: 1A (Tony Luzania)

Amphitheater (2)
1975: 5A (Jerry Loper)
1979: 5A (Vern Friedli)

Palo Verde (2)
1973: 5A (Van Howe)
2005: 4A-II (Todd Mayfield)

Sunnyside (2)
2001: 4A (Richard Sanchez)
2003: 4A (Richard Sanchez)

ASDB (Tucson Deaf and Blind)
1976: 1A (John Milford)

Flowing Wells
1975: 4A (Larry Hart)

Ironwood Ridge
2012: D-II (Matt Johnson)

Mountain View
1993: 4A (Wayne Jones)

Pueblo
1961: 5A (Lou Farber)

Pusch Ridge
2015: D-IV (Troy Cropp)

Sahuaro
1994: 4A (Howard Breinig)

Salpointe
2013: D-II (Dennis Bene)

San Manuel
1981: 3A (Damon Becker)

Suffolk Hills (Immaculate Heart)
1982: 1A (Steve Sorce)

Willcox
1982: 2A (Paul Hanley)

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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 is the Southern Arizona voting member of the Ed Doherty Award, recognizing the top football player in Arizona, and he was named a Local Hero by the Tucson Weekly for 2016. Contact Andy Morales at AMoralesMyTucson@yahoo.com

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