'Focused' Chandler rolls over Basha into semifinals

'Focused' Chandler rolls over Basha into semifinals


'Focused' Chandler rolls over Basha into semifinals


Looking briefly ahead to next week’s semifinal matchup with defending Division I state champion Chandler Hamilton, Chandler coach Shaun Aguano’s analysis of the pairing was short and sweet.

Vote: Which teams advance to the state finals?

“We like our chances,” he said.

If second-seeded Chandler plays even remotely close to how it did Friday night in a 49-21 quarterfinal drubbing of Chandler Basha, that’s exactly how he should feel.

Chandler faces No. 3 seed Hamilton next Friday at Gilbert Highland in the Division I state semifinals.

Chandler jumped out to leads of 35-0 after one quarter and 49-0 at halftime.

“We were focused the whole week,” Aguano said. “Our practice has been crisp, and we just knew if we came out and executed and our defense gives a short field, we knew what we did to them earlier. We had a lot of people say that, ‘Well, that was a fluke,’ but we’re just a good football team.”

Chandler defeated Basha 49-7 on Oct. 25.

In Friday’s game, Chandler quarterback Bryce Perkins had six touchdowns — four rushing and two through the air — in three quarters before being replaced by backup Kyle Yeargain. Perkins was 9 of 11 pass for 190 yards and had 12 carries for 133 yards.

Elijah Sykes added a touchdown on a 15-yard carry to close out the first quarter. Dionte Sykes tallied four catches for 102 yards and a touchdown.

If there is one objective Chandler (10-2) could take away from the win, it would be to eliminate unnecessary penalties. It was charged with nine penalties totaling 115 yards.

No. 10 seed Basha (6-6) scored three times in the fourth quarter after Chandler manned its defense with second-string players. Quarterback Zach Werlinger had a touchdown with seven minutes remaining on a 2-yard keeper. Werlinger 10 of 18 pass for 107 yards.

Running back Rajhan Meriwether scored twice and ended with 18 carries for 85 yards.


More USA TODAY High School Sports
'Focused' Chandler rolls over Basha into semifinals
I found this story on USA TODAY High School Sports and wanted to share it with you: %link% For more high school stories, stats and videos, visit http://usatodayhss.com.