Matt Rodriguez scored three rushing touchdowns for #4 Centennial and also recovered a fumble on defense as the Coyotes cruised to a 38-10 opening round victory over 13th-seeded Tucson Magnet School in the first round of the Division II playoffs in Peoria Friday night.
Rodriguez, a senior, scored on runs of two and five yards in the first half and added a four-yarder early in the fourth quarter to propel the Coyotes (10-1) to their tenth consecutive win. Centennial senior quarterback Jordan Suydam found senior wideout Kesean Green on a 40 yard fly pattern with nine seconds left on the first half clock to give the Coyotes a 21-3 halftime lead. Junior kicker booted a 32 yard field goal to open the scoring for Centennial in the second half, and junior running back Davonte Smith scampered 55 yards to cap off the scoring for Centennial in the final stanza.
The only scores for the Badgers (7-4) came on a first-half 29-yard field goal by senior placekicker Robin Thomas and a 25-yard touchdown pass from sophomore quarterback DeShaun Flannigan to senior athlete Donovan Moore in the fourth quarter. Centennial's special teams also contributed to the win, blocking a punt to set up the Coyotes' first score, recovering a muffed punt with 31 seconds left in the first half ahead of their TD pass, and thwarting a fake punt attempt by Tucson early in the second half.
Centenntial, the 2012 Division II state runner-up, will advance to the quarterfinals and host 12th-seeded Deer Valley next week.