Was it a sign of things to come?
Chandler Hamilton scored big on Saturday (June 28), winning both the Arizona Football Coaches Association seven-on-seven passing competition and the Big Man strength competition for linemen at the Surprise Stadium complex.
In the title game, Steve Belles-coached Hamilton outlasted fellow Division I team Phoenix Horizon 27-20.
There were 30 teams entered. In addition to Hamilton and Horizon, there were Glendale Cactus, Phoenix St. Mary’s, Surprise Valley Vista, Gilbert Higley, Surprise Shadow Ridge, Avondale La Joya, Phoenix Barry Goldwater, Palo Verde (Calif.), Surprise Paradise Honors, Peoria Centennial, Anthem Boulder Creek, Tolleson, Glendale Joy Christian, Mesa Mountain View, Buckeye Verrado, Peoria Sunrise Mountain, Peoria, Surprise Willow Canyon, Goodyear Desert Edge, Show Low, Buckeye, Phoenix Arcadia, Scottsdale Chaparral, Maricopa, Peoria Liberty, Avondale Westview, Queen Creek and Phoenix Northwest Christian.
Each team had four games plus a bye before bracket play began. Games lasted 30 minutes, with five minutes in between.
Hamilton had two teams in the Big Man competition, which combines several strength and agility drills.
Others in the Big Man were Horizon, Centennial, Westview, Palo Verde (Calif.), St. Mary’s, Paradise Honors, Mountain View, Glendale Mountain Ridge, Maricopa, Buckeye, Barry Goldwater, Queen Creek, Valley Vista, Liberty, Show Low, Sunrise Mountain, Willow Canyon, Verrado, Arcadia, and Cactus.
Hamilton opens the 2014 season with three road games – vs. Phoenix Sandra Day O’Connor, Phoenix Brophy Prep (Phoenix College) and Phoenix Pinnacle. This is the 30th anniversary of Belles leading St. Mary’s to the big-school state championship while taking Player of the Year honors at quarterback. Sandra Day O’Connor also is coached by a former St. Mary’s quarterback, John Rodriguez.