4A GILA — EMPIRE RAVENS
2022 record: 3-7 overall, 0-5 in 5A Southern (sixth)
2023 record: 1-3
Head coach: George Kelly, 10-26, fifth season at Empire and overall as a head coach.
- QB Bryce Duncan, Jr., 5-9, 155
- RB/LB Jordan Naveunxay, Sr., 5-5, 130
- WR/SS Jared Ahuero, Sr., 6-0, 200
- QB/SS Ethan Goodall, Sr., 6-0, 170
- RB/DE Ngonkra Fuangunyi, Jr., 5-10, 190
- LB/TE Luke Lambert, Sr., 6-2, 200
- LB/RB Auri Flores, Sr., 5-7, 170
- WR/FS Ben Mazzei, Sr., 5-8, 150
EMPIRE COACH GEORGE KELLY
EMPIRE RB/LB JORDAN NAVEUNXAY
EMPIRE LB/TE LUKE LAMBERT
Notes: George Kelly earned a Master’s Degree at Arizona in Counselor Education/School Counseling and Guidance Services after achieving a bachelor’s degree in Multi-Disciplinary Studies while playing football at UTEP in 2007 and 2008. He played at Pima College before that from 2005 to 2006 after graduating from Robert Service High School in Anchorage, Alaska. He was an assistant coach at Pima for four seasons before his hire at Empire in 2019. … LB/TE Luke Lambert, a senior with size at 6-foot-2 and 200 pounds, is the younger brother of former Empire standout Jake Lambert, who had similar size when he played for the Ravens. Jake Lambert rushed for 1,042 yards on 213 carries and producing an amazing 158 tackles, 16 for loss (five of them sacks), when he was a senior in 2021. Jake Lambert is a sophomore at Hastings (Neb.) College. … Jordan Naveunxay, one of the top seniors in Southern Arizona, stands at 5-foot-5 and 130 pounds but he is huge when it comes to contributing at multiple positions. He has played quarterback, running back, slot receiver, linebacker, safety and cornerback. … Empire is in the wide-open 4A Gila region that includes Rio Rico, Douglas, Sahuarita, Amphi, Cholla and Rincon/University. Not one of the teams is clear favorite to win the region. The Vail school has neighboring Mica Mountain and Cienega as fellow district schools. That makes it challenging for the Ravens to maintain a sufficient number of players to sustain a contending program.
Keep an eye out for: RB/LB Ngonkra Fuangunyi (5-foot-10 and 190 pounds) is a junior who is also an accomplished soccer player and sprinter in track. He leads the Ravens in rushing (104 yards) and he has 20 tackles with two sacks through the first four games.
39. EMPIRE (3-4, 2-1)Head coach: George Kelly
Ravens compete in the 4A Gila. *Region game. Games are at 7 p.m.
|8/25||at Sierra Linda||L, 13-7||0-1||0-0|
|9/1||La Joya||W, 20-14||1-1||0-0|
|9/8||Ironwood Ridge||L, 28-0||1-2||0-0|
|9/15||at Pueblo||L, 31-6||1-3||0-0|
|9/29||at Sahuarita*||W, 33-14||2-4||1-1|
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ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for CollegeAD.com, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports, TucsonCitizen.com, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon. He became an educator five years ago and is presently a special education teacher at Sunnyside High School in the Sunnyside Unified School District