Print Panthers shock Mingus
Written by Brian Bergner   
Friday, 07 October 2011 00:00

After Coconino High School scored on its first possession Friday, Sept. 30, Marauders fans figured it was no big deal because of past success over the visiting Panthers.

Head Coach Bob Young puts his hand on his head in frustration while giving instructions before a player takes the field during a home game Friday, Sept. 30. The Marauders were defeated by the Panthers, 47-26.From then on, however, the Mingus Union High School football team couldn’t stop the Panthers’ offensive attack, forcing only three punts all night in a lopsided 47-26 loss.

“Coconino controlled the line of scrimmage and we couldn’t stop them. We didn’t come to play tonight, and they took it to us,” an upset Mingus Head Coach Bob Young said.

The loss to Coconino is the biggest upset of the season for Arizona high school football at the Division IV level since Coconino wasn’t even ranked in the top 25 in Division III before Friday night’s win.

Since 2004, Mingus has outscored the Panthers 307-50 and was a perfect 7-0 in that time span before Friday nights debacle. That’s a 43.8 to 7.2 average score over seven seasons including two 50-plus point victories in 2007 and 2008.

After the clock showed zeros across the board, Coconino players rushed the field jumping and screaming as if they had just won a state title.

They realized it was the first time since 2000 a Panther team had beaten Mingus, and it was the first loss at home for the Marauders since 2008.

“We took a huge step back Friday night, and if we don’t improve on defense we can expect more of the same in the coming weeks,” Young said.

The biggest contributor to Coconino’s amazing victory came from senior tailback Luke Daulton, who had 19 carries for 208 yards and two touchdowns. Daulton had one catch on a 41-yard touchdown strike and had four tackles and 1.5 sacks on defense.

Going back to the first quarter, despite Coconino taking an 8-0 lead after the first drive, Mingus struck back with two touchdowns of its own to go up 13-8.

On Mingus’ first play offensively, junior quarterback Luke Simmons found a seam within the option offense and ran 70 yards for the touchdown.

Mingus forced the Panthers to punt on their next possession, and on the ensuing play, senior Carlos Abrigo ran 55 yards for a touchdown.

On both plays, neither Simmons nor Abrigo were touched by a Coconino defensive player, giving fans reason to believe this was soon to be another blowout victory for the boys in red.

Coconino obviously had other plans in mind with the 46-27 victory, dropping Mingus to 3-3 overall this season.

The Marauders started the 2011 campaign 0-2 but had won three straight coming into the Coconino game.

With the loss, the Marauders are ranked No. 16 in the Division IV Arizona Interscholastic Association power point polls. The Panthers are ranked No. 23 in the Division III polls with a 3-3 record.

Next up, Mingus will try to pick of the pieces as it is set to travel to Payson High School on Friday, Oct. 7.

The Longhorns are 3-3 and are ranked just in front of Mingus at No. 15 in Division IV. Payson has victories over Chino Valley [19-12], Miami [48-11] and Sedona Red Rock [42-7] high schools.

Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.