Gilbert schools create a stir in 5A-I football playoffs

November 13, 2010 by Les Willsey, AZPreps365

There hasn't  been much to shout about in Gilbert when it comes to football the last 25 years, but Friday night the town got a little pumped with a trio of  first-round playoff victories in 5A-I. Gilbert football fans should seize the moment and the next couple weeks since  they are guaranteed a school in the semifinals.

No. 15 seed Gilbert High, which was the last Gilbert school to win a state title in football (1985 over Cactus), avenged a 38-13 beating from Basha Friday with a 31-21 triumph over the second-seeded Bears. No. 7 Desert Ridge got its first 5A-I playoff win, rallying to outscore No. 7 Chandler, 38-35. And No. 8 Mesquite had the easier time of the three, dispatching No. 9 North Canyon, 49-7.

There's still a lot of work ahead to keep the good vibes going. Mesquite visits top-seed Hamilton on Nov. 19 in the quarterfinals. Gilbert travels to Desert Ridge for the first meeting between the schools in football since 2006. The teams have met twice and Gilbert won both games handily. Their matchup means at least one Gilbert school will be in the semis for the first time since Highland in 2004 when the Hawks lost to eventual state champ Hamilton.