The Ganado Hornets virtually clinched the Enchantment Region football championship with a 48-3 crushing of the Winslow Bulldogs in Winslow on Friday. Ganado is 6-1 for the season and a perfect 4-0 in the region. The Hornets need only a victory over Pinon or Monument Valley to wrap up the title. Ganado will be heavily favored in both games. Winslow remained solidly in second place and can clinch that position and the right to host a state play-off game with a victory over Greyhills on Friday.
Ganado opened the game with a 76-yard scoring drive. Almon Nelson carried for the bulk of the yardage and scored on a one-yard plunge with just under seven minutes left in the opening period. He also booted the conversion for a 7-0 Hornet lead.
Winslow struck back with the toe of its sensational junior kicker Brandon Nazario who split the up-rights from 45 yards out for three points to cut the deficit to 7-3 with 1:07 left in the quarter.
The Hornets took most of the wind out of Winslow's sails when Jason Semore broke several tackles and raced 80 yards on Ganado's next play from scrimmage. The score gave the Hornets a 13-3 lead at the end of the first period.
Semore scored again on a 16-yard run following his brother Chris Semore's interception of a Winslow pass. The conversion failed and Ganado led 19-3 with 4:53 left until intermission.
A third straight Semore touchdown on an 11-yard run and Nelson's conversion increased the lead to 26-3 with only 44 seconds left in the period.
Winslow couldn't handle a squib kick-off and Nelson scored his second touchdown on a two-yard run with just seconds remaining to give Ganado a 32-3 half-time lead.
The Hornets scored on their first play from scrimmage of the second half as Ty Lynch passed 42 yards to Travis Johnson. The score increased the lead to 38-3.
Nelson booted a 27-yard field goal near the end of the third quarter to give the Hornets a most comfortable 41-3 lead.
Sterling Cornfield ran nine yards for Ganado's final touchdown with 2:57 remaining. Nelson's conversion put the 48-3 final score on the board.
Winslow had one last chance as Shawn Mead returned the kick-off 77 yards to the Ganado eight-yard-line. The Hornet defense stiffened and took over on downs at the one-yard-line with time for only one play left in the contest.