Derek Simmons Top 16, Week Nine

Tuesday, October 15th

Things to know.. Following Snowflake's upset loss at Payson, the Lobos remain at No. 4 and Payson moved into the top 16 in the AIA's rankings. Sabino and Safford both got wins and dropped at least two spots. Valley Christian beat previously ranked No. 10 and moved up five, to No. 7. Winslow won and dropped a spot. Yuma beat last week's No. 14 and went from 15 to 10. Show Low lost to No. 6 and dropped three places. A team from the North and Metro East may finish out of top 16 and bump the 15 and 16 seeded teams out of the playoffs. I've spent much of my life confused, but this is a new level stumped for me.

16B. River Valley (5-2) - River Valley was shutout at home by Northwest Christian but still remain well inside the playoff bubble.  AIA - 12

16A. AZ College Prep (6-1) - It has turned into a legit fight for a first round home playoff game. Not sure they'll remain top eight, considering that Safford, Sabino and Yuma are all teams that follow in the rankings. AIA - 8

15. Show Low (3-4) - After a 14-7 lead at Blue Ridge at the half last week, the Cougars lost Cal Fawcett and Quentin Maxwell to injury on the same play and then lost the lead early in the fourth quarter. The Cougars haven't lost hope of making the playoffs yet, but will likely need to win their remaining three games to ensure it.  AIA - 20

14. Odyssey Institute (5-2) - They'll need to beat Bourgade Catholic and Coronado before meeting Yuma Catholic, if they want to remain in the playoff picture. AIA - 13

13. Winslow (7-1) - After their BYE week, they'll host Payson in a game that could determine the playoff lives for both teams. They finish the season at Snowflake, who isn't likely to drop another game against a team they should beat. AIA - 14

12. Payson (6-1) - In the first half last week against Snowflake, the Longhorns trailed 27-7. A missed PAT by Snowflake late in the fourth quarter resulted in one of the biggest comebacks of the year. The final score: 34-33, Payson with the BIG upset win over Snowflake. As a result, the Horns are now top 16 with monumental region games remaining. Winning two of three could get them into the playoffs. This week, at Show Low. Next week, at Winslow. Week 11, home against Blue Ridge. AIA - 10

11. ALA Gilbert (3-4) - They are unlikely to get a win against Yuma Catholic this week but, if they win their remaining two games, could still make the playoffs at 5-5. I predict them finishing out of top 16 and making post season as region winner.  AIA - 15

10. Coolidge (7-1) - Only ALA QC remains, as far as tough games go. This team is going to host a first round playoff game. AIA - 5

9. Valley Christian (5-2) - Another mystery in the rankings.. While ranked No. 12, then beating No. 10, they moved up five spots. None-the-less, don't sleep on them. AIA - 7

8. Safford (5-2) - A 52-0 win at Catalina was met with a drop in the rankings from eight to 11. AIA - 11

7. Blue Ridge (6-2) - The Yellow Jackets dominated in the fourth quarter last week against Show Low, gaining their first lead of the game with eight minutes left in the game. PJ London continues to dominate and the rest of this young team improves, a little at a time. If they win out, they could be hosting in the first round. AIA - 6

6. Snowflake (5-2) - I would love to see the Lobos remain in the top four and host for the first two rounds, but following loss to Payson last week, I cannot see them remaining this high. Still rather unexplainable that they didn't drop, following last week's loss at Payson. AIA - 4

5. Sabino (5-2) - The Sabercats didn't beat a quality team last week (Tanque Verde), but try explaining them dropping two places... AIA - 9

4. Yuma Catholic (4-3) -  In just two games, Jamar Macfarlane has rushed 51 times for 581 yards and seven scores. He averages 290 yd/gm and over 11 per carry. They may not have the complete team to beat ALA QC, but could make a run very deep. Getting Ean Chavez back from injury adds a lot, as well. AIA - 10

3. Northwest Christian (6-1) - The Crusaders posted a 35-0 shutout at the new $35 million indoor football stadium in Bullhead City. There isn't much else to tell about the weak schedule remaining. Expect them to stay top four in the rankings. AIA - 3

2. Ben Franklin (7-0) - The big game is here this Friday as the Chargers host ALA QC. QC is the better team but with the style of offense Ben Franklin runs, it could be close. Can't really call for home field advantage as these two schools are just ten minutes apart. Winner will win their region and enter post season as the No. 1 seed. Loser should finish top four in final rankings. AIA - 1

1. ALA QC (7-0) - Predicting a 28-14 win for the Pats as they play at Ben Franklin this week. As stated above, winner will finish No. 1 in the final playoff rankings a few weeks from now and the loser is likely to remain top four, if not stay at No. 2. AIA - 2

Blue Ridge/Show Low Post Game Interviews/Highlights

Oct. 11th, 2019 - Blue Ridge 28, Show Low 14

Jimmy Wallace, Blue Ridge

Dimitri Muncy, Blue Ridge

PJ London, Blue Ridge, Pt. 1

PJ London, Blue Ridge, Pt. 2

Show Low Highights

Snowflake Post Game Following Win Against Blue Ridge

Oct. 4th, 2019 - Snowflake 29, Blue Ridge 17

Brig Turley, Snowflake Lobos

PJ London, Blue Ridge Yellow Jackets

VIDEO - WM Communities Healthcare District Town Hall - Oct. 3rd, 2019

Click the image to watch the White Mountain Communities Special Healthcare District Town Hall meeting, held on October 3, 2019, in Springerville.

2019 FNF Game Broadcast Schedule

Catch the Hatch Toyota Friday Night Football Show every week during the 2019 High School Football Season, only here at Sports Zone Radio. The show gets underway Fridays at 5:00 pm with kickoff of the SZR Game of the Week at 7:00 pm, and wrap it up with the Ace Hardware Scoreboard Show, the show the coaches call, after the game. Watch our live video here at or listen live on the website and the Sports Zone Radio Mobile App!

 fnf game sched 0819 800px

Show Low at Round Valley, Interviews, Highlights (2)

August 23, 2019 - Show Low 36, Round Valley 18

Ridge Lee

Anthony Avila

Keegan Clark

Monte Maxwell

Game Highlights

REPLAY VIDEO: Blue Ridge 28, Show Low 14

FULL GAME REPLAY - Paul Moro Stadium, Lakeside, Oct. 11, 2019 - The No. 6 Blue Ridge Yellow Jackets fought off No. 17 Show Low to pick up their second 3A East Region win of the season, 28-14 on Friday. Quarterback PJ London rushed for two of the Jacket's three 4th quarter touchdowns and earned the SZR Player of the Game for a second time this season. 


FULL GAME REPLAY - Lobo Stadium, Snowflake, Oct. 4, 2019 - Watch the replay of Snowflake vs Blue Ridge.


FULL GAME REPLAY - Round Valley Dome, Eagar, Sep. 27, 2019 - Two of the top 2A teams in Arizona met last Friday at the Round Valley Dome, and it took an interception by Phoenix Christian junior DB Howard Russell at the back of the endzone, with just :08 seconds remaining in the game, to preserve the Cougars' lead and the victory over Round Valley. The Sports Zone Radio Player of the Game, Man-man Freeman of Phx Christian, rushed for 169 yards and two touchdowns, while the Elks got a heroic effort from several players, including quarterback Taylin Bevell (141 yards rushing, 2 TD's) and lineman Trevor Wilson who made huge contributions on both offense and defense. Next up for the now 2-2 Elks, the oldest rivalry in the state - they will go to St. Johns to battle the 4-1 Redskins.


FULL GAME REPLAY - Lobo Stadium, Snowflake, Sep. 20, 2019 - Homecoming 2019 was a battle for the Snowflake Lobos, but they put together an impressive second half to beat the Pusch Ridge Lions, 27-6. Brig Turley rushed for 156 yards and a touchdown to pick up the SZR Player of the Game award. Turley's backfield mate Terren Green rushed for 106 and two touchdowns while also playing a great game on defense. Snowflake gets a bye next week before a home matchup with Blue Ridge in the Lobos' first 3A East Region game of the season.


FULL GAME REPLAY - Cougar Stadium, Show Low, Sep. 13, 2019 - The Show Low Cougars needed a bounce back win after last week's loss to Thatcher, and that's just what they got on Homecoming last Friday. The Cougars piled up over 400 yards of offense and scored a 51-7 win over ALA Ironwood. The Maxwell brothers keyed the win with stellar play on defense - Senior Zach Maxwell was in on multiple sacks (Show Low had eight sacks on the night) and Sophomore Quinton Maxwell rushed for 50 yards and 3 TD's. Cal Fawcett picked up SZR Player of the Games honors with over 100 yards rushing and two touchdowns scored. Show Low, now 3-1, has a touch matchup at Safford this Friday.


FULL GAME REPLAY - Cougar Stadium, Show Low, Sep. 6, 2019 - The Show Low Cougars fell to three-time 2A defending champions Thatcher, 29-0 on Friday. The Eagles managed to gain 305 yards of offense, all on the ground. Show Low gained 14 first downs, just one less that Thatcher, and won the turnover battle, 4 to 2, but it wasn't enough. The Cougars also suffered the loss of quarterback Keegan Clark, who left game in the first half with a serious injury that required surgery. The timeframe for a possible return is unclear. Show Low will hots American Leadership Academy-Irowood next Friday at Cougar Stadium.


FULL GAME REPLAY - Paul Moro Stadium, Lakeside, Aug. 29, 2019 - The Blue Ridge Yellow Jackets are officially 2-0 all time in games played at Paul Moro Stadium in Lakeside, after taking down Alchesay 34-0 in Week 2 of the 2019 football season. Jr. QB PJ London was named SZR Player of the Game after two long rushing TD's and a touchdown pass completion as well. Blue Ridge will prepare for St. Johns next Friday while Alchesay gets a bye week before battling the Pima Roughriders next time out.


FULL GAME REPLAY - Round Valley Dome, Friday, Aug. 23, 2019 - The Show Low Cougars opened up the 2019 season with a revenge win on the road, knocking off the Round Valley Elks 36-18. The Elks had beaten the Cougars to start both of the last two seasons, but this time is was all Show Low as they racked up 445 yards of offense including 404 rushing yards. The Sports Zone Radio Player of the Game, Keegan Clark, ran for 209 yards and TD's of 57 and 80 yards. The Cougars host 4A Mingus Union next Friday night. Round Valley has a bye next week. Their next matchup is Friday, Sept. 6th in the Dome versus Santa Cruz Valley.

PJ London 2019 Highlight Video, Wk One, Wk Two, Wk Seven

PJ London, Blue Ridge Junior Quarterback - Highlights from 2019, week seven at rival Snowflake.

Highlights from first two weeks, 2019.

REPLAY VIDEO - 3A Boys State Playoffs, Chinle 67, Show Low 42

February 16, 2019 - The No. 1 Chinle Wildcat boys scored 31 points in the 2nd quarter to pull away from No. 17 Show Low in the 3A State Playoffs, at Ganado on Saturday. Jason John hit three 3-pointers in the 2nd quarter and score 13 of his 16 points in the period. John was named the SZR Player of the Game. Chinle next faces Sabino in the boys quarterfinals on Tuesday, February 19th, at Prescott Valley.


February 15, 2019  - Winslow has defeated Ganado in the 3A Girls State Tournament, 38-32, in a game played at Snowflake High School. Brianna Little hit come clutch free throws, Justine Butterfield won the battle inside, and freshman Kylie Begay hit four 3-pointers, scored 17 points and earned the SZR Player of the Game. Winslow will now face Window Rock in the quarterfinals on Monday in Prescott Valley.


February 7-9, 2019 - Relive the 2019 3A North Region Tournament with Sports Zone Radio's unmatched video coverage by clicking below. These games available free for a very limited time!



February 8, 2019 - The Chinle boys defeated Monument Valley in the 3A North Region Semifinals, at Ganado. Peyton Wagner played a tough defensive game to earn the SZR Player of the Game. 


February 7, 2019 - Monument Valley knocked off Tuba City in the opening round of the 3A North Boys Region Tournament. 

REPLAY VIDEO - Sabino 30, Snowflake 14

Friday, Nov. 9, 2018 - The last team standing in the 3A East was eliminated from the playoffs on Friday as the No. 3 ranked Snowflake Lobos fell to No. 6 Sabino, 30-14, at Lobo Stadium, in the 3A state quarterfinals. The Lobos struggled on offense, gaining 150 yards less than the Sabercats, who will next play Yuma Catholic this Saturday in the semifinals. 


Friday, Nov. 2, 2018 - The No. 3 ranked Round Valley Elks opened the playoffs with a home date against the Pima Roughriders - after ending the regular season with a win over Pima last week - and didn't disappoint their legion of fans. They came away with a 45-0 victory over the Roughriders and were led by the Sports Zone Radio's Player of the Game, Tayvin Bevell. Tayvin rushed for 168 yards on just 6 carries with four of those handles going for touchdowns. Round Valley will play Arizona Lutheran Academy next Friday in the quarterfinals at the Round Valley Dome.

NOTE: Video rights owned by the AIA; this game unavailable


Friday, Oct. 26, 2018 - In the final regular season week of football, Blue Ridge errupted for 28 second half points to knock off Payson. The win sewed up the No. 11 seed for the upcoming 3A state playoffs for the Yellow Jackets, and it sealed Payson's fate as they missed the playoffs. Zeke Kessay caught a touchdown pass from QB PJ London, and Zeke also scored on a Pick-Six, returning an interception 28 yards for a touchdown. Kessay was named the Sports Zone Radio Player of the Game.


Friday, Oct. 19, 2018 - The Snowflake Lobos made good on their No. 2 ranking with a convincing 41-6 win over the Show Low Cougars - the first home win in the series for the Lobos since 2011. David Brimhall ran for 105 yards and added great defense to pick up the SZR Player of the Game, which could have gone to a number of different players. Brig Turley scored three TD's. Ethan Rammage didn't throw an incomplete pass all night, while heaving two touchdown passes. Justin White dominated in the trenches. Jake Christensen was a dynamo on both sides of the ball. Watch the video and share with your friends!


Friday, Oct. 12, 2018 - The No. 19 Show Low Cougars came from behind to beat No. 17 Payson in a crucial 3A East matchup between two teams on the playoff bubble. James Turner picked up the SZR Player of the Game Award after rushing for 127 yards with two touchdowns while also returning the opening kickoff 95 yards for a score.


Friday, Oct. 5, 2018 - The Blue Ridge Yellow Jackets went into Cougar Stadium and picked a 3A East region victory over Show Low, 23-12. The story of the game was Yellow Jacket Chase Esparza, who broke the Blue Ridge school record for rushing attempts in a game. The senior running back carried the ball 46 times for 199 yards, breaking the long-time record of 24 held by Jeremy Hathcock. 

Video - Show Low Flag Football Championship

August 29th, 2017 - The Cardinals capture Show Low's 5th-6th Grade Season and Tournament Championships, knocking off the Broncos 61-8 in the final.

Video - Simmons Media gets a thumbs up from Phil Stratton Electric

Watch the video to get a behind the scenes look at our recent TV commercial shoot for Phil Stratton Electric. To find our what Simmons Media/The Sports Zone can do to increase the profile of your business with the White Mountains' highest quality video and radio production, call 928-205-8140 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..