The Winslow Bulldogs will take a 5-1 record into their Homecoming contest on Friday. Winslow has cruised past all of its opponents except for a one point 20-19 loss to the Snowflake Lobos in the third game of the season. Most local fans believe that the best team did not win on that night.
Friday's opponent figures to be the toughest regular season test for the Bulldogs. Round Valley, ranked number on in 3A, is also 5-1 for the season and the only blemish on the Elks record is a narrow 17-14 loss to a good St. Johns team. Round Valley owns wins over Monument Valley 57-6, Sedona Red Rock 41-34, Show Low 42-12, Alchesay 14-6 and Blue Ridge 15-7. That last win over the top ranked Blue Ridge Yellowjackets leaves the Elks with a perfect 3-0 record in the tough 3A East Region and puts them in the driver's seat for a play-off berth.
The Elks are coached by Russ Semore, who coached the Winslow Bulldogs in the 1990's before moving on to successful stays at Ganado and Hopi before taking the reins at Round Valley.
Round Valley's win over Blue Ridge featured an excellent defensive effort that shut down the powerful Yellowjacket scoring machine. A 27 yard run with a pass interception by Travis Tricky was the key play for the Elks.
The win at Blue Ridge ruined the Yellowjackets Homecoming Game celebrations. The Elks will be eager to dampen another Homecoming celebration at Nasser Stadium on Friday.
For the Winslow Bulldogs, this is probably the team's best chance to prove that they are legitimate Arizona State 3A Championship contenders. Of Winslow's remaining foes, the Elks are unquestionably the most dangerous and a team that could possibly be a future playoff opponent.