Mingus Union football off to fast start in 7-on-7 play

Mingus Union junior Kendrew Streck intercepts a Sedona Red Rock at the end of the Marauders’ 7-on-7  win over the Scorpions on Wednesday at home. So far this year in 7-on-7 , Mingus Union has beaten 6A power Brophy College Prep, Prescott, Sedona Red Rock, Coconino and won the Monument Valley Tournament. (VVN/James Kelley)

Mingus Union junior Kendrew Streck intercepts a Sedona Red Rock at the end of the Marauders’ 7-on-7 win over the Scorpions on Wednesday at home. So far this year in 7-on-7 , Mingus Union has beaten 6A power Brophy College Prep, Prescott, Sedona Red Rock, Coconino and won the Monument Valley Tournament. (VVN/James Kelley)

Mingus Union football started 7-on-7 play with some impressive results.

After traveling to Tolleson last week, they went to ASU and Monument Valley before hosting 7-on-7 action on Wednesday.

The Marauders didn’t keep score but appeared to do very well in their home 7-on-7 games, against Monument Valley, Sedona Red Rock, Coconino and Prescott.

“We g

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Mingus Union junior Alex Nelson runs around a Scorpion during the Marauders’ 7-on-7 win over Sedona Red Rock on Wednesday at home. Mingus Union head coach Bob Young said Nelson is on the of the Marauders that have impressed so far this year. (VVN/James Kelley)

ot better,” said Mingus Union head coach Bob Young.

The Marauder offense scored early and often, including long touchdowns to junior Kendrew Streck and senior Martin Soria. The Mingus Union defense was stout too, like holding Prescott with out a touchdown.

After starting against teams like Sedona, Mingus Union finished with Coconino and Prescott.

“We started a little slow, we weren’t focused,” said Mingus Union junior quarterback Antoine Zabala. “With a little less talented teams we knew we usually play down to their level and we know we can’t have that anymore, we’ve got to get better every day, every game, every rep. But throughout the rest of the day, we really turned it on with Prescott and Coco, those are teams we know that are better but we need to play lights out 100 percent of the time.”

While Mingus Union went 1-3 at ASU, it was against 6A teams and they beat football power Brophy College Prep.

“That was great for us, it was,” Young said. “We beat Brophy and lost to some other teams by one score. I’m proud of them and we’re continuing to try an get better.”

Then at Monument Valley, Mingus Union shined against schools more their size, going 7-0 and winning the tournament.

“We opened up with Tolleson, we did really well, we were on point defense looked really well,” Zabala said. “The next day at ASU we struggled a little bit more with a little more talent but there are teams we shouldn’t have lost to and we’ll continue to get better. Monument Valley we won the tournament and we were on key, receivers catching the ball, it was amazing to watch, it was a good thing to see.”

Mingus Union beat the hosts and Blue Ridge, plus five teams from New Mexico.

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Mingus Union linemen Ivan Martinez (left) and Claye Griffin run against a Prescott Badger in the 4x100 water-melon relay on June 7 at Mingus Union. (VVN/James Kelley)

Young said on offense Zabala, junior Alex Nelson, Soria and Streck have done well for the Marauders so far.

“Those guys on offense specifically, they’re making some big plays,” Young said. “On defense I think Justin Link, Marcos Valenzuela, some of our seniors are really stepping up.”

Zabala said everyone has been impressive to him, especially their young linemen.

“I’m watching the linemen, linemen especially, they’re looking amazing and I know that our receivers are on point catching the ball and we need to get a little bit better on defense, getting into our stances but overall I think this team is looking good and getting better every week,” Zabala said.

Up next for Mingus Union is the NAU High Mountain Challenge

on Saturday. Then next week they travel to Paradise Valley on Tuesday before hosting another 7-on-7 and Big Man competition on Wednesday at 5 p.m. After that they travel to San Diego June 15-17 and then Prescott on June 21 before closing out the 7-on-7 season at home on June 28. The

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Mingus Union junior Antoine Zabala rolls out to pass against Coconino on Wednesday at home. Mingus Union head coach Bob Young said the Marauders’ starting quarterback has done well in 7-on-7 play. (VVN/James Kelley)

regular season kicks off on August 25 at Higley.

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