FOOTBALL: Pusch Ridge & Benson to play for state championships


Benson's Nick Hernandez (Andy Morales/

Benson’s Nick Hernandez (Andy Morales/

Southern Arizona teams competed in five divisions this year. And, of those five, only teams from the “smaller” three divisions have made it or will be playing in a state championship game.

No. 2 Elfrida Valley Union made it to the D-VI championship where the Blue Devils lost to No. 1 Pima on November 14 and No.3 Pusch Ridge is in the D-IV final while No. 1 Benson is playing for the D-V championship.

Valley Union has three titles to its name but Benson (13-0) and Pusch Ridge (12-1) are playing for the first title in school history….


Pusch Ridge will play for first football title in school history. (Andy Morales/

Pusch Ridge will play for first football title in school history. (Andy Morales/

Division IV Championship

Saturday, Nov. 28
Chaparral High School, 6 p.m.
No. 3 Pusch Ridge vs. No. 8 NW Christian
(NFHS Network)

Division V Championship

Saturday, Nov. 28
Chaparral High School, 2 p.m.

No. 1 Benson vs. No. 4 American Leadership
(NFHS Network)

Southern Arizona State Football Championships

Tucson High (13)
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)

Thatcher (6)
1986 : 2A (Ed Hughes)
1988: 2A (Ed Shamey)
1998: 2A (Jim Hughes)
2000: 2A (Don Conrad)
2001: 2A (Don Conrad)
2006: 2A (Don Conrad)

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)

Safford (2)
1969: 4A (Dick Pottle)
1971: 4A (Dick Pottle)

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

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

Flowing Wells (1)
1975: 4A (Larry Hart)

Ironwood Ridge (1)
2012: D-II (Matt Johnson)

Mountain View (1)
1993: 4A (Wayne Jones)

Pueblo (1)
1961: 5A (Lou Farber)

Sahuaro (1)
1994: 4A (Howard Breinig)

Salpointe (1)
2013: D-II (Dennis Bene)

San Manuel (1)
1981: 3A (Damon Becker)

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

Willcox (1)
1982: 2A (Paul Hanley)

Discuss this post in our Talk of Tucson Message Board

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 and on the pages of the Vail Voice and the Tanque Verde Voice. Contact Andy Morales at



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