Before their game against the Rams, the Cardinals honored the 5A and 6A state champions along with the offensive and defensive players of the year.
GLENDALE, Ariz. — History was written in Arizona as the first-ever official season for girls flag football wrapped up earlier this month with Campo Verde (5A) and Mountain View (6A) claiming the inaugural state championships.
On Sunday, the Arizona Cardinals celebrated that historic season before their game against the Los Angeles Rams.
The Cardinals hosted the players and coaches from Mountain View and Campo Verde for a pregame ceremony.
Campo Verde was 8-4 this season and beat Canyon View, 14-13, for the 5A state title.
Mountain View was 9-3 this season and beat Mountain Ridge, 10-7, for the 6A state title.
The Cardinals also honored the Cardinals Offensive Player of the Year, sophomore wide receiver Samaya Taylor-Jenkins from Hamilton High School, and the Cardinals Defensive Player of the Year, senior safety Ryland Douglas from Chandler High School.
Douglas even got to set off the ‘Big Red’ Siren before the game.
Taylor-Jenkins was named the Cardinals Offensive Player of the Year after grabbing 92 catches for 1,625 yards and 23 touchdowns.
Douglas was named the Cardinals Defensive Player of the Year as she had 59 tackles, nine sacks and 15 interceptions this season.
The Cardinals handed out the awards to Taylor-Jenkins and Douglas earlier this month at their schools.
Hamilton head flag football coach Matt Stone told 12News that Chandler’s Douglas will be playing in the first-ever U.S. Army flag football All-Star game. The game will be played in Texas in December.
That game is only for seniors, so Taylor-Jenkins will not be there, but Stone told 12Sports in a social media message that he guarantees Taylor-Jenkins will be there in two years as she is not only a star on offense, but also on defense and special teams.
According to MaxPreps, on defense, Taylor-Jenkins had 25 tackles, 5 interceptions and 5 passes defended. On special teams, she returned 25 punts for 307 yards and punted 38 times, with her longest being 53 yards and six of them were downed inside the 20-yard line.
The city of Phoenix is home to five major professional sports league teams; The NFL’s Arizona Cardinals, NBA’s Phoenix Suns, WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury, MLB’s Arizona Diamondbacks and NHL’s Arizona Coyotes.
The Cardinals have made the State Farm Stadium in Glendale their home turf and the Footprint Center in downtown Phoenix is home to both the Suns and the Mercury. The Indoor Football League’s Arizona Rattlers also play at the Footprint. Phoenix has a soccer team with the USL’s Phoenix Rising FC.
The Valley hosts multiple major sporting events on a yearly basis, including college football’s Fiesta Bowl and Guaranteed Rate Bowl; the PGA Tour’s highest-attended event, the Waste Management Phoenix Open; NASCAR events each spring and fall; and Cactus League Spring Training.
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