Week 1 Roundup: Baker throws 3 TDs to lead Paradise Honors over Thatcher 35-14

August 19, 2023 by Brian M. Bergner Jr., AZPreps365

SURPRISE — Gage Baker threw three touchdown passes, including a 50-yard strike to Coleman Burkhart and Paradise Honors made a statement in Week 1 with a 35-14 victory over state runner-up Thatcher on Friday night.

The Panthers (1-0, 0-0 3A Metro West) led 14-8 after the first quarter and outscored Thatcher 21-6 in the second half to breeze to victory.

Paradise Honors lost to No. 4 Show Low 77-42 in the second round of the 3A state playoffs in 2022. The Panthers will travel north to Mohave in Week 2.

Thatcher (0-1, 0-0 3A South) is scheduled to travel to Eastern Arizona College and play the Crismon Rattlers, a new program in the 3A South.


COOLIDGE — Cameron Hackworth threw five touchdown passes and Sabino put up 22 unanswered points in the first quarter to cruise to a 55-28 win in Week 1 action Friday night.

Hackworth completed 17 of 25 passes for 386 yards for the Sabercats (1-0, 0-0 3A South), which have high hopes in 2023 for not only a return to the 3A state playoffs, but beyond.

Sabino lost to eventual state champ Eastmark 42-28 in round two last fall.

Hackworth also carried the ball seven times for 45 hard and a touchdown. Running back Mason Cade had three carries for 86 yards and one touchdown.


WINDOW ROCK — Quarterback Gino Quinones completed 5 of 10 passes for a touchdown, Ty DeSpain scored three touchdowns and Winslow scored 26 unanswered points in the third quarter for a 42-0 win over Window Rock on Friday night.

DeSpain had nine carries for 74 yards for the Bulldogs (1-0, 1-0 3A North), which are looking to take the next step toward a playoff spot in 2023 after going 5-5 last fall.


YUMA — Quarterback Mickey Smith threw for three touchdowns, Jayden Plotkin and Michael Saykally each had two scores and River Valley defeated Yuma 56-20 on Friday night.

Smith completed 8 of 12 passes for 241 yards for River Valley, while Saykally had 15 carries for 147 yards.

The Dust Devils (1-0, 0-0 3A West) won four of their last five games in 2022, but failed to make the playoffs despite a 6-3 record.


Week 1, 3A

Week 1, 2A

Week 1, 1A


FLAGSTAFF — With Week 2 getting underway at the Walkup Skydome on the campus of Northern Arizona University on Thursday, teams in the 4A, 5A and 6A open their 2023 campaigns as well.

Here is a schedule at NAU:

Thursday, Aug. 24

Scottsdale Prep. vs. Hopi, 4 p.m.

Chino Valley vs. Kingman Academy, 7 p.m.

Friday, Aug. 25

Greenway vs. Flagstaff, 1 p.m.

Pinnacle vs. Arbor View, 4 p.m.

Pusch Ridge vs. Show Low, 7 p.m.

Saturday, Aug. 26

Slam vs. AZ College Prep. 1 p.m.

Tempe vs. San Tan Foothills, 4 p.m.

Florence vs. Valley Christian, 7 p.m.

For all your stats and scores, follow AzPreps365.com.

Brian M. Bergner Jr. has covered professional, collegiate and high school sports for more than 20 years. Follow him on Twitter @AzPreps365Brian. Have a story idea? Email Brian at bbergner@azpreps365.com.