in that game.
“Cibola’s always been the mindset of, ‘We’re going to run something until you stop it,’” Franz said. “We’ve got to win the battles within tackles.”
Line play on both sides of the ball is where Franz sees much of the game being decided. The Kings returned all of their skill players from the 2016 team but had no returners on the offensive line. Running back David Castaneda, who eclipsed 100 yards five times last year, has not even hit 300 yards on the season.
“We challenged (the offensive line this week in practice), especially our interior three,” Franz said. “We just haven’t been 100 percent happy with how they’ve played, so we’ve tried different things. Our offensive success is going to ride on the interior. If they can’t get it done, we’re not going to be able to move the ball.”
REST OF THE SLATE Youngker at Gila Ridge, 7 p.m.
The Hawks (2-5 overall, 0-1 4A Southwest) were blown out in their seasonopener last week against Buckeye Union. They gave up 47 first-half points, and wound up with a 54-10 loss at home. But Buckeye is the cream of the crop in the 4A Southwest; it won the region with ease a year ago.
Youngker (5-3 overall, 2-0 4A Southwest) looks much improved from a year ago, when the Roughriders went 2-9 — only beating Gila Ridge and Yuma High. But the Hawks played them tough last year, losing by seven points despite being in the midst of an eventual eight-game losing streak to end the season.
If Gila Ridge is going to get back in the win column in a game besides the endof-season meeting against Yuma High, this is the best bet.
Estrella Foothills at Yuma High, 7 p.m.
Of the big public schools’ games this week, this is the least winnable. But Estrella Foothills, which was not too long ago a power in Division IV (known now as 3A), looks to be having somewhat of a down year. The Wolves (4-3 AIA, 0-1 4A Southwest) lost to Youngker two weeks ago, but that is the same Youngker team that the Criminals (2-5 AIA, 0-2 4A Southwest) just lost to by 45 points.
Yuma High is on a fivegame losing streak after starting the season 2-0, and have lost four of those five by 24 or more.
North Pointe Prep at Yuma Catholic, 7 p.m.
There’s really not much to say here as these two are worlds apart in terms of quality. The 3A Metro region has a distinct hierarchy. Yuma Catholic (5-2 AIA, 1-1 3A Metro) is at the top with Casteel, and North Pointe Prep (1-6 AIA, 0-2 3A Metro) is at the bottom with ASU Prep. Last week, against mid-tier Valley Christian, the Falcons lost, 62-6.
WARNER: CIBOLA over Kofa, YOUNGKER over Gila Ridge, ESTRELLA FOOTHILLS over Yuma High, YUMA CATHOLIC over North Pointe Prep, ANTELOPE over Scottsdale Prep
GRADY: CIBOLA over Kofa, YOUNGKER over Gila Ridge, ESTRELLA FOOTHILLS over Yuma High, YUMA CATHOLIC over North Pointe Prep, ANTELOPE over Scottsdale Prep