Basha must rally to get past No. 5 Blue Devils

Tucson Citizen 

CHANDLER - Chandler Basha coach Tim McBurney has been coaching high school football teams for more than 30 years.

So he wasn't eager to compare his team's 42-28 upset win over Sunnyside to some of the big wins he experienced while at Tempe High School.

"We beat three No. 1 teams while I was at Tempe," he said after last night's game. "What we did this week was try to prepare this team the same way we prepared those Tempe teams."

It worked. Basha (2-1) stormed back from a 14-point, third-quarter deficit and topped the No. 5 team in the state.

Basha could have thrown in the towel at the 6:45 mark of the third quarter. Mike Smith had just scored on a 17-yard run to put Sunnyside in front 21-7, and Basha faced third-and-11 at its own 19.

But quarterback Shane McBurney scrambled and threw a 79-yard pass to Matt Hibbert, then scored two plays later to cut the lead to 21-14.

Sunnyside's Jovan Stevenson returned the ensuing kickoff 59 yards, giving quarterback Sammy Olivas a great opportunity to recapture the momentum.

Olivas stepped up with a 10-yard touchdown run four plays later, putting Sunnyside (1-2) up 28-14.

McBurney responded in a big way. His 83-yard strike to Hibbert for a touchdown on the next play brought Basha within 28-21 and ignited the defense, which would shut down Sunnyside for the rest of the game and set up two scores in the fourth as Basha completed the rally.

Basha's Kodi Otero sacked Olivas twice and forced a fumble that was returned to the Sunnyside 1-yard line in the fourth.

McBurney finished 13 of 21 for 307 yards and three touchdowns.

Olivas threw for one touchdown and rushed for another for Sunnyside. Mike Smith rushed for 105 yards on 18 carries with one touchdown.