Dorados ready to prove critics wrong - The Explorer: Sports

Dorados ready to prove critics wrong

Coaches, team confident without Carey

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Posted: Wednesday, August 17, 2011 3:00 am

Can Canyon Del Oro be the powerhouse it’s grown accustom to being without the running talent of Ka’Deem Carey? Coaches and players preparing for the new season think so.

Carey is now in the high school history books as he prepares for his college career at the University of Arizona. Seniors on CDO’s 2011-12 squad say they are ready to prove they are still a top contender.

In his final year as a Dorado, Carey rushed for 1,754 yards on 198 carries.

Now, the tailback position will be filled by senior Jason Vartanian, who agrees CDO has a lot of skeptics.

“We have a chance to be pretty good if we follow assignments and execute plays,” Vartanian said. “We have to perfect our plays a little more, and come together on the field.”

With big shoes to fill, Vartanian says he has talked to Carey, and can take steps to fill a huge hole in the backfield.

Coach Dustin Peace said Vartanian has waited and learned over the last year. He adds now that Vartanian has the chance to carry the ball, he will have a big impact on offense.

The Dorados were state runners-up last season, finishing 13-1. In 2009, they were state champions, capping off a perfect 14-0 season.

“We consider last year to be a successful season even though we were not state champions,” said Peace. “So, our goal is to maintain the level of success we have had over the last four years. We are very talented in our skilled positions.”

Stepping behind center on offense will be Cooper Smith, who played backup quarterback and free safety last year.

“I think we look good,” said Smith. “A lot of teams don’t think we’ll be much without Ka’Deem, but I think we’ll be pretty good. For now, we’re just working to block out the pressure. We know we aren’t going to be able to rely solely on one position. We’re going to have to play as a team.”

Peace said Smith, “is one of the smartest and best leaders we have had at the quarterback position over the last few years.”

Smith will be throwing to senior wide receivers Josh Brown and Clint Cochrane.

Peace describes Brown as one of the most “dominant, skilled players in the city,” and Cochrane as the player with the “best hands” on the team.

Cochrane says the players feel a lot of pressure, not because of what critics or other teams are saying, but because they know they have to perform at the high level of standard required within the CDO program.

Some concerns for the Dorados, as they continue preparing for the Aug. 26 season opener against rival Ironwood Ridge, is the offensive line.

Peace describes a young group that must work hard to improve and learn from last season’s experiences.

Some new prospects will also give the team a boost heading into the new season.

Max Anae is coming to CDO from Utah. Anae, the son of new UA offensive line coach Robert Anae, will play linebacker and offensive guard.

Dillon Davidson transferred to CDO from Mountain View.

Davidson, who Peace describes as one of the fastest players on the team, will play corner and be a weapon in the running game on offense.

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HS Schedule

Tuesday, September 30

Boys Golf (3 p.m.)

Mountain View at Haven Golf Course

Ironwood Ridge, Buena, Catalina at Rincon (Dell Urich)

Girls Volleyball (4, 5, 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Marana at CDO

Maricopa at Mountain View

Ironwood Ridge at Vista Grande

Poston Butte at Catalina Foothills

San Miguel at Pusch Ridge

Freshman Football (6 p.m.)

Maricopa at Marana

Wednesday, October 1

Girls Golf (3 p.m.)

Mountain View vs. Ironwood Ridge (Omnu Tucson National)

CDO, Sunnyside at Flowing Wells (Silverbell)

Sabino at Catalina Foothills

Cross Country (4:30 p.m.)

Ironwood Ridge, Sahuarita at Flowing Wells (Columbus Park)

Marana, St. Gregory at Catalina Foothills

Girls Volleyball (4, 5, 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

CDO at Ironwood Ridge

Freshman Football (6 p.m.)

Mountain View at Salpointe

Catalina Foothills at CDO

JV Football (6.p.m.)

Marana at Maricopa

Salpointe at Mountain View

CDO at Catalina Foothills

Thursday, October 2

Swimming (4 p.m.)

Mountain View, St. Gregory’s, Pusch Ridge at Marana

Girls Volleyball (4, 5, 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Mountain View at Poston Butte

Catalina Foothills at Flowing Wells

Pusch Ridge at Willcox

Varsity Football (7p.m.)

Maricopa at Marana

Mountain View at Salpointe

Catalina Foothills @ CDO

Ironwood Ridge at Rincon

Friday, October 3

Boys Golf (all day)

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Santa Rita/Flowing Wells Invitational

Girls Vollyeball (all day)

CDO, Catalina Foothills at Falcon Invitational

Cross Country

Catalina Foothills, CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Desert Twilight Festival

Varsity Footbal (7 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at San Tan Valley

Saturday, October 4

Boys Golf (all day)

CDO at Santa Rita/Flowing Wells Invitational

Swimming (all day)

Catalina Foothills, CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Brophy/Xavier Swim Invitational

Girls Volleyball (4 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at Desert Christian

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