ELFRIDA – The Valley Union Blue Devils will take part in a three-team scrimmage this Friday at Tombstone High School in Tombstone.
The Blue Devils will rotate series with both Tombstone and St. David. The scrimmage, which is open free to the public, will start at 6 p.m.
John Estelle is back for his second year as head coach of Valley Union. Assisting him this year will be Martin Sierras, Dusty Vasquez, Brandon Gilbreth and Ramon Martinez.
Valley Union was 2-6 overall last year, 2-2 in region play with its two wins coming over Baboquivari and St. David.
The coach said when practice kicked off July 29, he was low on numbers but once school started, he went before the student body and asked for students to come out for the team.
“Believe it or not we were able to get five or six more signed up so now we have about 23 players out,” he said. “Now we just have to teach them how to play football because all these new kids have never played football before. We don’t have Pop Warner or Peewee football so we have to start from scratch.”
Since his team began practice, the coach said the players have shown improvement.
“Conditioning has been our biggest issue,” he said. “But that’s coming along.”
Returning this year for VU, will be last year’s quarterback Billy Vansickle, Erubiel Sierras, Jacob Sonke, Pablo Arreola, and Larry (Alex) Stewart. Stewart recently suffered a medical issue and will be out at least three weeks.
The coach announced he had a student transfer from Douglas who is awaiting clearance from the Arizona Interscholastic Association, who once he is cleared, he hopes will be able to contribute to the team.
The Blue Devils, who have three home games and five away games this year, kick off their season Aug. 23 at Cibecue before traveling to Superior and Joseph City, Aug. 23 and 30. Valley Union’s home opener won’t take place until Sept. 13 when Mogollon comes to Elfrida. Homecoming is scheduled for Oct. 11 against Duncan.