Snowflake registers 3A football repeat

November 28, 2021 by Les Willsey, AZPreps365

Snowflake celebrates back-to-back 3A football crowns after its 10-3 victory over Yuma Catholic. (Azpreps365 photo)

Snowflake apparently likes to win its football championships in bunches.

The Lobos tallied 10 points in the final 13 minutes, enough to subdue title-hungry Yuma Catholic, 10-3, in the 3A championship game at Campo Verde High School. Snowflake's eighth title was secured with its 13th consecutive victory to cap a 13-1 season. Yuma Catholic concluded 2021 with a 12-2 record and finished runner-up for the second straight year. The Shamrocks were seeking their first title since 2014.

Snowflake's first championship came in 1982 - a stand alone. The Lobos won back-to-back-back in 1985*, 1986 and 1987 then strung together another trio in succession 1991, 1992 and 1993. Title No. 9 on Saturday is back-to-back since the Lobos knocked off Yuma Catholic last year as well.

"It was a pretty vanilla, but we got a couple opportunities we were able to take advantage of," Snowflake coach Kay Solomon said. "It was a game with two high-powered defenses."

Snowflake, which trailed 3-0 after Yuma Catholic scored on its first possession (32-yard field goal by Logan Rush), didn't score until late in the third period. Its TD came after it turned back a fourth-down gamble by Yuma Catholic at midfield. The Lobos then marched 49 yards in seven plays for the game's only trip to paydirt with 1:10 left in the quarter. Five consecutive runs totaling 31 yards by running back Camden Brimhall (25 carries, 122 yards), a nifty 16-yard reception by wide out Noah Baum from quarterback Caden Cantrell and a 9-yard run to the end zone by Rhett Wengert (79 yards rushing, 42 yards receiving) put the Lobos up 7-3.

Yuma Catholic didn't seem fazed. It drove from its 26 to Snowflake's 31. On fourth down YC quarterback Richard Stallworth threw to wide open wideout Mario Martinez inside the 20, but a rare drop by Martinez ended the possession.

Yuma Catholic got the ball back again with 6:48 to play. A couple productive runs by Devon Black put the Shamrocks at the Snowflake 40. But the next play the Shamrocks fumbled as Black surged for extra yardage and lost the ball. Snowflake's Lance Christensen recovered at the 40. The Lobos proceeded to take up almost four minutes of clock and put their final points on the board - a 29-yard field goal by Samuel Crockett with 2:17 to go for a 10-3 advantage.

Snowflake's Noah Baum (18) congratulates Rhett Wengert (5) after his 3rd quarter TD on Saturday night. (Azpreps365 photo)

Snowflake needed one more stop. It yielded one first down before stopping Yuma Catholic at the Lobos 42. The Shamrocks faced a fourth-and-10 at their own 49. Stallworth was looking to throw briefly, but took off to run for the first down. He thought he had the yardage needed measured, but stepped out of bounds at the Snowflake 42 - a yard shy of extending the drive. Snowflake took over with a little more than a minute remaining and ran out the clock.

* It should be noted the 1985 title was a tie with Round Valley when ties were not played off. It's still considered a title albeit a shared title.