5A Gila Region Preview

This region quietly had two playoffs teams in 2009, can they do it again?

5A Gila Region Preview

Bottomline

Two teams out of this region, Cibola and Yuma, made the playoffs in 2009. They look to be the favorites but watch out for a Lake Havasu team that slipped in '09 after being a playoff team previously in a much stronger 4A1 West Valley Region.

Prediction

1. Cibola
2. Lake Havasu
3. Yuma
4. Gila Ridge
5. Kofa
6. San Luis

Breakdown

Cibola: I would call 2009 a success for Lucky Arvizo's squad. They made the playoffs, beat Yuma, and had both the offensive and defensive players of the year in the region. Unfortunately, they lose a league high 12 all-region performers, including RB Roy Thompson and LB Adrian Lugo. They do get back 9 all-region kids and should challenge for the region title.

Key Losses: RB Roy Thompson, LB Adrian Lugo, OL Robin Acevedo, OL Jeff Bickel, DL Ted Morgan, K Dylan Arviso, LB Cody England, OL Ryan Van Horn, RB Cody Plymale, OL Mike Perales, OL Joe Nielson, LB Blake Brazeel

Key Returners: TE Jacob Gauna, DL Leo Aranda, OL Andre Hernandez, DB Cody Pletsch, DB Braden Easley, WR/DB Jacob Flores, OL Adam Vidal, DB Austin Oliaz, LB Kyle Heredia

Gila Ridge: GR won two close games to close 2009 on the right foot. They finished 4-6 and went 3-2 in region play. Can things get better? They do return 7 all-region players but are going to have to improve on a defense that gave up 35 points per game.

Key Losses: WR L'Jey Younger, DB Nate Pancrazi, OL Esteban Ruenao, OL Angel Marerro, RB/P Javier Bon, DL Justin White, DB Anthony Perez

Key Returners: OL Aaron Bird, QB Mike Pancrazi, LB Andy Meza, WR Corey Semler, DL Luke Eglof, LB Rory Stewart, RB Kevin Harold

Kofa: Replacing Timmy Lee and Lucky Castaneda and their 2,000 + yards of offense is paramount. WR Dominic Castaneda is the only al-region player returning off of this 4-6 squad.

Key Losses: RB Timmy Lee, DL Tyler Masson, RB/DB Tevin Alford, LB Trevor Montgomery, QB Lucky Castaneda, OL Kyle Harper, DB Phuc Cao

Key Returners: WR Dominic Castaneda

Lake Havasu: The Knights were a major disappointment in 2009, going just 1-4 in region play despite having the league's #2 offense. The good news is they had several close games and have 20 players returning. OL Adrian Gonzalez is possibly the biggest player in the league standing 6-3 300+. He will open huge holes for RB Max Delia.

Key Losses: DL Ryan Jordan, OL Jesse Ray, QB/P Doug Green, DL Mike Caso, OL Nic Ewald, TE Jeremy Holtzen, DB Dillon Bracamonte, DL Chad Hertz, K Humero Rueda

Key Returners: OL Adrian Gonzalez, LB Max Dreager, WR Chris Larson, RB Max Delia, LB Paul Lake

San Luis: The Sindwinders are going to have to find a way to get better. They averaged just 4 points per game and gave up over 52 per contest. With only two a-region players returning, 2010 could be rough.

Key Losses: OL/DL Gilbert Dominguez, WR Jose Hernandez, DB Peter Lopez, LB Angel Carrasco, OL Adrian Maranon, OL Jose Lopez, DB Arturo Garcia, LB Abraham Ortiz

Key Returners: RB Daniel Slusher, DL Rudy Valdez, QB David Contreras,

Yuma: The Criminals made the playoffs in 2009 and had the #1 offense. 1,000 yard rusher Travon Clark is the workhorse of this team.

Key Losses: QB/LB Donte Jackson, RB JC Baker, WR/DB Andrew Herrarte, OL Mario Castro, OL Mike McAdams, OL Irving Rodriguez, DL Pete Franks, DL Marquan Williams, LB Juan Chavez

Key Returners: OL Matt Clifton, RB Anthony Jackson, RB Travon Clark

Coach of the Year: Lucy Arviso - Cibola
Offensive Player of the Year: RB Travon Clark - Yuma
Defensive Player of the Year: DL Leo Aranda Cibola

Top 5 Players

1. Travon Clark – RB Yuma
2. Adrian Gonzalez – OL Havasu
3. Leo Aranda – DL Cibola
4. Max Dreager – LB Havasu
5. Dominic Castaneda – WR Kofa


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