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Benson to play Santa Cruz for 2A State Championship

Rishard Davis (Andy Morales/AllSportsTucson)

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 5

STATE SEMIFINALS
OPEN: No. 2 Hamilton 58, No. 6 Salpointe 14
3A: No. 1 Yuma Catholic 36, No. 4 Pusch Ridge 20
2A: No. 1 Benson 34, No. 4 AZ Lutheran 27
2A: No. 3 Santa Cruz 27, No. 7 St. Johns 20

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 12

2A STATE CHAMPIONSHIP
No. 1 Benson vs. No. 3 Santa Cruz at Coronado, 1 p.m.

The 2A Conference state championship slate is set with No. 2 Eloy Santa Cruz (8-1) taking on the top-seeded Bobcats of Benson (9-0) on Saturday, Dec. 12 scheduled for 1 p.m. at Scottsdale Coronado. This will be the fourth match between the two programs dating back to 1997 with the Dust Devils holding a 3-1 lead including a 49-0 win in 2017 and a 44-8 win in 2016.

The 2016 loss came a year after the Bobcats took second place in the state playoffs for only the third time in school history. Now, head coach Chris Determan (134-81-1) has another shot at a championship that has eluded the Bobcats. Meanwhile, the Dust Devils have seven state titles but none since 1990 and current head coach Rishard Davis (57-21) led the program to a runner-up finish in 2017. It will obviously be the first title for either coach.

The final was set up after a long day of semifinal games held at Higley High School on Saturday with Santa Cruz outlasting No. 7 St. Johns 27-20 in the day game and Benson holding on to beat No. 4 Arizona Lutheran 34-27 in the nightcap…

LINK: GAME RECAPS AT AZPREPS365

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Andy Morales was recognized by the AIA as the top high school reporter in 2014, he was awarded the Ray McNally Award in 2017, a 2019 AZ Education News award winner and he has been a youth, high school and college coach for over 30 years. He was the first in Arizona to write about high school beach volleyball and high school girls wrestling. 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. Andy was named an Honorary Flowing Wells Caballero in 2019 and he was a member of the Amphi COVID-19 Blue Ribbon Committee and was given the Amphi Distinguished Service Award. Contact Andy Morales at amoralesmytucson@yahoo.com

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