For the second year in a row, athletes from Arizona went to the New Level/Badger Sports 7 on 7 tournament in Las Vegas and had a good showing. Last year's team went depe into the second day of the event and this year's squad made a semi-finals appearence.
The following players took part in the tournament:
Colby Kirkegaard- Arcadia
Devon Villarreal- Notre Dame
Connor McClain- Arcadia
Bryce Scannell- Fountain Hills
Marquis Flowers- Millennium
Deche' Milburn- Buena
Patrick Runsford- Buena
Darius Kelly- Buena
DeAndre Little- Buena
Zach Bauman- Hamilton
Travis Dean- Hamilton
Mike Massey- Millennium
Branden Zavala- Basha
If you watched the first day, you would not have expected this team to do as well as it did. The first day was round robin style for the next day's seeding and Team AZ went just 1-2 for the day.
Their first game saw them lose in a close one to a Chris Badger (Stanford commit) led Utah squad. The two teams battled back and forth but AZ was unable to punch it in with under a minute to go in the game.
They battled back in round two and beat a Nevada squad that was headlined by one of the most recruited players at the event, TE Xavier Grimble from nearby Bishop Gorman High. Hamilton RB Zach Bauman had three TD receptions, two of which where thrown by Acardia's Colby Kirkegaard.
The winning was not contagious as they fell handily to a California team led by Chris Martin who has pledged to Notre Dame.
Expectations were low headed into day two but AZ's coach had the team much more organized and they came out on fire with two straight wins. They opened with Team Idaho/Wyoming and ended up winning by two scores. Bauman had three TDs and the defense played well and had two INTs.
Team AZ turned into giant killers in their next game as the surprised most in attendance with an upset win over Team Washington who had five-star QB Jake Heaps throwing the rock to wideouts Jamaal Kearse and Kasen Williams. All three of the players hold multiple BCS offers.
AZ started the game off right with Travis Dean leading them downfield before finding Bauman for the first score and a lead they would never relinquish. Washington matched but AZ went right back to work, scoring on a long Kirkegaard to Bauman strike. Deche' Milburn added the extra point and this time the defense stepped up, forcing a turnover on downs. Bauman scored a third time and Marquis Flowers had a PBU to end the game.
A bye in the next round may have let some air out of their sails as they had a rematch with Team Utah and were beat soundly. Utah played mistake free football and scored on their first two possesions while AZ did't move the ball. Dean hit Mike Massey for the team's only TD of the game.
The Utah squad ended up losing in the championship to one of several California teams in the event.
Team AZ Fairs Well in Vegas
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